People

Peter J. Kirsch

Partner

Denver Office
303.825.7000 C 303.898.1665
Washington, DC Office
202.596.1112

Education and Clerkships

J.D., University of Chicago, 1984
Law Clerk, Judge Alfred T. Goodwin, United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 1984–1985
B.A., with highest honors, Oberlin College, 1979

Bar Admissions

Washington
District of Columbia
Maryland
Colorado
Many Federal District Courts, Courts of Appeals
United States Supreme Court

Resources
 



P3 Airport Projects: An Introduction for Airport Lawyers


SMS_Briefing_Paper_for_SNPRM_Cover.jpg

FAA Proposals for Safety Management Systems Discussion Paper


Guide-to-Airport-Noise-Rules-Thumb.jpg

Guide to Airport Noise Rules and Use Restrictions

Peter J. Kirsch

Peter Kirsch’s practice focuses on transportation, infrastructure, and other public sector projects.  Peter represents clients ranging from municipalities and local governments to corporations and public interest groups in negotiations and litigation over land use entitlements, the environmental impacts of infrastructure projects, and compliance with federal transportation law and regulations.  He litigates cases before administrative agencies, numerous state and federal trial and appellate courts, and the U.S. Supreme Court.  He represents many airport sponsors before Congress and federal administrative agencies.

For nearly 30 years, Peter has been involved in the development of airport infrastructure – including most of the new commercial airports in the United States as well as dozens of airport expansions, redevelopment projects, and development of airport lands for non-aeronautical projects.  He advises airports on financial matters, regulatory compliance, leasing, development, land use issues, environmental impacts, and relations with their host communities.  He has litigated all of these issues in federal and state courts, courts of appeals, and in Part 16 proceedings before the FAA.  Increasingly, Peter provides counsel to airports on creative and precedent-setting revenue-generating projects in the development of land and in concession arrangements.

For highways, dams, and other infrastructure projects, Peter advises clients on compliance with federal environmental laws, with a particular focus on the National Environmental Policy Act, the National Historic Preservation Act, the Endangered Species Act, and other federal statutes that affect projects on federal lands or requiring federal approvals.

Representative Experience

Paine Field, Everett (Seattle area), Washington
Represented the airport sponsor in a first-of-its-kind public-private partnership to accommodate commercial airline service for the first time to a large industrial airport in suburban Seattle, including federal environmental review, negotiations with the private terminal developer, and work on relations with nearby communities

Dallas Love Field, Dallas, Texas
Assisted the sponsor in creation and defense of complex gate allocation methodology at an airport whose terminal capacity is capped by federal law; including drafting allocation procedures and assisting with defense of state and federal litigation among carriers, the FAA, and the sponsor over that allocation approach

Friedman Memorial Airport, Hailey (Sun Valley), Idaho
Represented the proprietor of one of Idaho’s largest commercial airports in the planning, environmental review, and development of a replacement airport and in federal compliance, noise, and environmental problems at the existing airport

Naples Ban on Stage 2 Aircraft, Naples, Florida
Represented the airport proprietor in the proceedings leading to the nation’s first-and-only ban on noisy stage 2 aircraft under the Airport Noise and Capacity Act; successfully represented proprietor in multiple litigation challenges to noise rule

Hollywood Burbank Airport, Burbank, California
Represented City in decades-long effort (including more than a dozen lawsuits) to secure noise relief and to control growth at Southern California airport; successfully represented client in negotiation of development agreements to share control and authority over future development of airport and the development of a new passenger terminal for the first time in more than 80 years

Westchester County Airport, White Plains, New York
Successfully negotiated a terminal use agreement to provide for controlled growth of passenger service in a politically contentious environment; secured federal approvals for unique arrangement by which proprietor retained control over commercial operations

Houston Hobby Airport, Houston, Texas
Assisted proprietor in negotiations of a new use-and-lease agreement by which dominant carrier funded, designed and built new terminal for initiation of international service

Cincinnati-Blue Ash Airport, Blue Ash, Ohio
Successfully navigated federal and local approvals for the closure of an outdated and underused general aviation airport and the conversion of the airfield into a new regional park; defended litigation challenging those approvals

Professional and Civic Activities

  • Board of Trustees, Denver Botanic Gardens (2012–Present)
  • Colorado Advisory Board, Trust for Public Land (2012–Present; Vice Chair 2016–Present)
  • Board of Directors, Conservation Colorado (2004–2006, 2010–Present; Chair 2012–2016)
  • Denver Cultural Council (2014–2016)
  • Board of Trustees, Museum of Contemporary Art - Denver (2005–2012)
  • Board of Trustees, Volunteers for Outdoor Colorado (2004–2010; Chair 2006–2008)
  • Board of Trustees, Oberlin College (2000–2007; Executive Committee 2003–2006)
  • Bromwell School CDM [Governance] Committee, Chair (2002–2004)
  • Board of Trustees, River Network (1993–2002; Chair 1999–2001)
  • Transportation Section, International Municipal Lawyers Association (Chair 1996–1997)

News & Publications

Presentations

ACI-NA Legal Affairs Spring Conference
05.05.17
ACI-NA/AAAE Airport Board and Commissioners Conference
04.03.17
Annual AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop and Legal Update
2005–Present
32nd Annual AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop and 2016 Legal Update
11.15.16
32nd Annual AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop and 2016 Legal Update
11.15.16
32nd Annual AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop and 2016 Legal Update
11.14.16
32nd Annual AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop and 2016 Legal Update
11.13.16
AAAE Rates and Charges Workshop
11.03.16
AAAE Rates and Charges Workshop
11.03.16
NASAO Annual Convention
09.13.16
Annual AAAE General Aviation Issues and Security Conference
08.22.16
Annual AAAE General Aviation Issues and Security Conference
08.22.16
ACI-NA Legal Affairs Spring Conference
05.07.16
ACI-NA/AAAE Airport Board and Commissioners Conference
04.11.16
ABA Forum on Air & Space Law Update Conference
02.26.16
Regulatory and Legislative Update; and Next Gen – Coming Soon to a Community Near You
SWAAAE Airport Management Short Course
01.30.16
31st Annual AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop and 2015 Legal Update
11.03.15
31st Annual AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop and 2015 Legal Update
11.03.15
31st Annual AAAE Basics of Airport Law Workshop and 2015 Legal Update
11.01.15
15th Annual Airport Noise Mitigation Symposium
10.08.15
Annual Worldwide Airports Lawyers Association Conference (Athens, Greece)
09.10.15
Annual Worldwide Airports Lawyers Association Conference (Buenos Aires, Argentina)
09.19.14
National CLE (Real Estate and Environmental Law)
2000–2002, 2008, 2011–2014
31st Annual Aviation Law Association of Australia and New Zealand Conference (New Zealand)
04.03.12
ACI-NA/AAAE Implementing SMS at Your Airport Workshop
03.21.11
ACC/AAAE Airport Planning, Design and Construction Symposium
02.24.11
AAAE/ACI-NA Washington Legislative Conference
02.01.11
Understanding Airports’ Responsibilities Under the Proposed SMS Requirements
Annual AAAE General Aviation Issues and Security Conference
01.11.11
A Brief Review of Developments in Federal Environmental Law, Policy & Regulation 2010
28th Annual National CLE Conference
01.07.11
Frequent speaker at, and program committee member for, Annual University of California Airport Noise and Air Quality Symposium
1990–2011
48th Annual TRB Workshop on Transportation Law
07.21.09
ACI-NA/AAAE Airport Board and Commissioners Conference
04.29.07
American Association of Airport Executives: Airport Planning Conference
2003–2007
American Association of Airport Executives: Resort Airports Conference 
2003–2005, 2007
Annual AAAE General Aviation Issues and Security Conference
09.19.06
University of California Aviation Noise and Air Quality Symposium
03.05.06
ACC Institute's Airport NEPA Essentials Course
06.06.05
Annual AAAE National Aviation Environmental Management Conference
04.05.05
AAAE Resort Airports Conference
10.18.04
Administrative and Judicial Jurisdiction for Challenging Airport Actions
ABA Forum on Air & Space Law Update Conference
11.08.01
Frequent speaker at Florida Airports Council annual conference and environmental/noise specialty conferences
Frequent speaker at Airports Council International-North America conferences and Legal Affairs Committee meetings
Frequent speaker at American Association of Airport Executives annual and regional conferences

Publications

Airport Law Desk Reference (annual editions)
Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell
2005–Present
Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell
07.27.16
Transportation Research Board's Airport Cooperative Research Program
07.11.13
Kaplan Kirsch & Rockwell and Harris Miller Miller & Hanson Inc.
June 2004
16 The Air & Space Lawyer 14
Spring 2002
Chapter 3.4 in ICMA Base Reuse Handbook:  A Navigational Guide for Local Governments
1997
Airports '95 (Institution of Engineers-Australia Pub. No. 95/07) 
October 1995

News

Education and Clerkships

J.D., University of Chicago, 1984
Law Clerk, Judge Alfred T. Goodwin, United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, 1984–1985
B.A., with highest honors, Oberlin College, 1979

Bar Admissions

Washington
District of Columbia
Maryland
Colorado
Many Federal District Courts, Courts of Appeals
United States Supreme Court

Resources
 



P3 Airport Projects: An Introduction for Airport Lawyers


SMS_Briefing_Paper_for_SNPRM_Cover.jpg

FAA Proposals for Safety Management Systems Discussion Paper


Guide-to-Airport-Noise-Rules-Thumb.jpg

Guide to Airport Noise Rules and Use Restrictions