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Airport Planning

Staff Contacts
Linsey Callaghan, Supervising Planner
(401) 222-6479

Rhode Island Airport Planning

The Rhode Island State Airport system is composed of six airports currently owned by the Rhode Island Department of Transportation (RIDOT) with the Rhode Island Airport Corporation (RIAC) assuming all management and operating responsibilities. RIAC was created in 1992 as a quasi-public corporation of the State of Rhode Island to develop the state aviation system in an efficient and effective manner. In addition to operating and maintaining the State owned airports, RIAC is responsible for the planning, design, and construction of airport improvements.

Rhode Island’s airport system consists of the following six airports, and their National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems (NPIAS) roles and service levels:

  • T. F. Green Airport, Warwick, Primary Service Level Airport, Medium Hub
  • North Central Airport, Smithfield and Lincoln, General Aviation Service Airport, Reliever
  • Quonset Airport, North Kingstown, General Aviation Service Airport, Reliever
  • Block Island Airport, New Shoreham, Primary Service Level Airport, Non-Hub
  • Westerly Airport, Westerly Primary Service Level Airport, Non-Hub
  • Robert F. Wood Airpark (also called Newport Airport), Middletown, General Aviation Service Airport

The Division of Planning, together with the Rhode Island Airport Corporations, completed the Airport System Plan, which was adopted by the State Planning Council on September 15, 2011. This plan is a strategic plan for the six state-owned airports looking forward to the year 2021. It identifies goals, policies, and strategies needed to ensure that Rhode Island maintains an airport system that is capable of meeting the state’s long-term transportation and economic needs. It also recognizes that airport operations in some cases will be carried out in densely populated and environmentally sensitive areas. Aviation is a mode of transportation that is critical to a well-balanced transportation network that allows Rhode Island travelers the ease of travel to connect to the country and the world.

Quonset Airport Master Plan


The Rhode Island Airport Corporation (RIAC) is currently updating the 2006 Quonset State Airport Master Plan. As part of the update to the Quonset State Airport Master Plan, RIAC intends to build on the information and strategies in the State of Rhode Island Airport System Plan completed in 2011. An Airport Advisory Committee (AAC) has been established to guide RIAC with the development of the update. The objectives of the AAC are to provide a forum to discuss and respect other members’ views, to mediate differences and develop better alternatives, to review and comment on reports, and to ensure the planning practices utilized to shape the airport plan. The AAC is scheduled to meet four times over the 18-month study period. Statewide Planning is one of the AAC members that will participate in the AAC activities.