Handicapping the various airport scenarios

Okay, here’s where I’m thinking things stand regarding an airport anywhere in Orange County, and just for a chuckle, I’ve handicapped the scenarios as I see them. Note: I do not have insider information from anyone in any form, just conjecture based on history and a large dollop of cynicism.

1. Horace Williams Airport remains open, where it is, for at least another 7-10 years and likely beyond. REVISED 3/24/11: Odds 95 in 100.

How this will happen: General aviation powers [edited Dec. 2008 to add "and the economy"]  ["successfully finesse" edited Mar. 2011 to read:] "take no notice of" actual construction of an AHEC facility at RDU.  [Delete: " Unexplained delays in beginning the Innovation Center continue."  Add:]  "Plans for the Innovation Center are tabled,"  permitting operations at HWA to continue uninterrupted. Anti-OC-airport efforts are successful in delaying or even stopping land-acquisition for a siting in rural Orange County. Carolina North proceeds on paper but founders on economic uncertainties; a few buildings are actually ["built"] planned in the next 10-15 years, but all [delete:" including the Innovation Center"]  at some distance from airport grounds.

Odds: 3 in 5  Revised 12/19/08  to 4 in 5  Revised, see above.

Longer-range side bet: Declaring that its jurisdiction always included Chapel Hill, the Airport Authority appropriates lands – owned either privately or by the University – for airport improvement and expansion. Town Council objects but fails to find legal means to stop the expansion, particularly since the Authority cites “safety” as the primary reason for the land appropriation. Odds: 1 in 5

2. Horace Williams remains open while construction of the new OC jetport proceeds.

How this will happen: General aviation powers [edited Dec. 2008 to add "and the economy"] successfully finesse actual construction of an AHEC facility at RDU, either within the UNC hierarchy or by recourse to the legislature. Having already been chosen by UNC planners in collaboration with private and corporate plane-owners, a final site for an OC airport is announced. Designs and plans, subsidized and supervised by the same private interests, surface in nearly complete form for use in negotiations for federal funding. The Airport Authority functions largely to focus on such concerns as operating hours, drainage controls, access road routes, parking lot specifications, and the nature of buildings to be constructed on the premises. Citizen opposition is either conquered by area-based division or outright neutralized by characterization as extremist NIMBY self-indulgence. A number of former airport opponents become prominent in Airport Authority debates about logistics and arrangements.

Odds: 4 in 10 Revised Jan 09 to 1 in 5    REVISED 3/24/11  Odds: zero

3. AHEC facilities are relocated to RDU, Horace Williams is closed, plans for an OC jetport proceed.

How this will happen: Once AHEC facilities at RDU are completed, Horace Williams airport is closed, and general aviation advocates agree without further objection to use RDU, Sanford, or other nearby airports while the new airport they’ve been promised is constructed in Orange County, waiting patiently until its completion and working in above-board concert with community, local government, and the University.

Odds: 1 in 25 Revised 12/19/08  to 1 in 50  REVISED 3/24/11  Odds: zero

4. AHEC facilities are moved to RDU; Horace Williams is closed by 2010; no new airport is constructed.

How this will happen: Construction of AHEC facilities at RDU begin in 2009 without further delay. Economic realities make clear that an airport is an unacceptable extravagance for University and taxpayers, and anti-airport efforts lead local elected officials and University bean-counters to join forces to advocate abandoning the project, resisting pressure from plane-owner alumni and local businessmen. The NC legislature concurs with the University’s decision despite heavy lobbying from those who were promised a general aviation airport in Orange County.

Odds: 1 in 100  REVISED 3/24/11  with change of date for closure to 2018  Odds: 5 in 100

Other handicappers welcome to reassign odds!

Issues: 

Total votes: 185

Comments

Given the economy we now have I think you're number 1 scenario, Priscilla, is the most likely to occur. AHEC is a smoke screen for the wealthy who fly in to and out of Horace Williams and don't want the airport closed. If Carolina North can't float and there are no funds to build a general avaiaton airport (which I believe to be the case), Horace Williams will not be closed, and the western Orange County folks can relax.

If you're opposed to Carolina North and a new airport, that's the good news. The bad news, of course, is that this is just a prelude to more drastic times for the University and our community. It's going to be a very long and painful road back from the depression we are now just entering and we haven't gotten close to bottom yet.

Maybe we'll have far fewer rich folks to fly planes, if you'll excuse my whistling past the grave yard, and Horace Williams will fold from lack of customers. If good times return you can bet the first thing they'll do is push for an extended runway for larger jets.....at Horace Williams, of course.  

I still don't believe the University or the town would permit HWA to stay where it is with five public schools (and hundreds of private residences) within a one-mile radius. The only reason the school board agreed to build new schools in these locations was that they were assured by UNC that the airport would be moved. The removal of Horace Williams airport should be the first priority of EVERYONE, including the CH Town Council, CHCC Schools, and Orange County citizens. Nine aviation deaths have occured in the last thirty years as a direct result of HWA. Let's do everything in our power not to increase that number.

Clearly you're not a Chapel Hill native! I was born here in 1969 and live within spitting distance of Horace Williams Airport. I've never been hit by an airplane! I say, those who built or bought houses nearby obviously knew the airport was there when they did it. So...the noise is bugging you? Don't pretend like it's a safety issue. Don't make those in rural Orange County pay for your home purchasing mistake!

Roscoe, you'll note I gave highest odds to #1. One reason is that it involves the least mobilization, the least conflict among titans, and the least actual activity.

In light of that, two overarching impressions:

1. The phenomenal amount of resources - time, "conferencing," money, political currency, angst, etc. - devoted to plans that will never happen is really dismaying.

2. The phenomenal degree of inexorability on the part of private aviation advocates has been, time after time, the final determinant, irrespective of any other interests - public, University, community, whatever. Why would it be any different in the future? "The rich ye always have with you." Also dismaying.

Priscilla wrote:

 Unexplained delays in beginning the Innovation Center continue, permitting operations at HWA to continue uninterrupted.

 The CHH wrote this morning:

CHAPEL HILL -- Alexandria Real Estate Equities, Inc., the California-based company that designed and will lease the first building planned for Carolina North, is concerned about its ability to fill the space with tenants during bad economic times, UNC Chancellor Holden Thorp acknowledged Tuesday.

Representatives from the university asked the Town of Chapel Hill to delay consideration of a Special Use Permit application for the Innovation Center because there are still details that need to be ironed out in the lease agreement between UNC and Alexandria.

"We're working with Alexandria on this project, and we anticipated having a lease signed by now," Thorp said. "We don't have a lease yet and we don't think it's appropriate to ask the town to do more work on that until we're there. I'd say there are a number of reasons [for the delay], and the economy is definitely a factor."

AHEC has purchased two (perhaps 3) new "Diamond D" jets that cannot land at IGX. Unless, of course they follow the 2005 T&B plan that expanded Horace Williams.

TB, a comment and question (and note my sidebet to scenario 1 re: expansion):

1. Comment: HWA's fate only became so tightly hitched to AHEC's when it became expedient and compelling to present it that way to the legislature. Previously, HWA was described generically as being intended for flights having to do with "University business." Of course, as long as there are a couple of AHEC aircraft that still use HWA, that would be considered enough reason to keep HWA open. But that doesn't mean that -- the University's stated intent notwithstanding -- HWA would necessarily close the day the last AHEC flight leaves. I can imagine some sub-scenarios wherein HWA would remain open to "University related business" as a supposedly temporary measure.  

2. Question: How was it determined, by whom, that the Diamond D jets can't land there? Not quibbling at all - I know it's a relatively short runway and reportedly not in great shape; and it seems hazardous on the face of it for jets beyond a certain size/type to try to use it. However, last I checked, there weren't any official prohibitions linking type of jet to length of runways -- just common sense calculations and the pilots' best judgment. Just wondered at what point (and by whom) it was actually and publically stated that AHEC now has new Diamond D jets and that they can't use IGX. A matter of curiosity for me, I guess.

The HWA Manual gives the three governing requirements for jets: runway length, weight and noise. The jets you refer to need less than 4,,000. The 12,000 weight limiit and noise level are well within the specs. If you Google the Double D jet specifications, you can get them and compare them to the manual.

The place I got the incapable of landing at IGX statement from is the T&B 2008 "working Paper #1" page 5.

"Consistant with FAA's recomendations. AHEC reports that they need precision instrument approachs with low approach minimums for maximun utility and to minimize the requirements for diversions. These types of approaches are currently not avaialble at Horace Williams."

BTW I think these new jets are still awaiting FAA certification, so it may be another red herring. 

Here is some of the marketing collateral, it says a 2000ft runway, but I wouldn't want to do it.

 

Diamond D-Jet Easy to operate, convenient and affordable. Diamond D-Jet is a product of the Austria-based Diamond Aircraft Industries. It is among the few aircrafts that utilizes composite-airframe technology that are present in planes like DA40 Star, DA20 Katana, and D442 TwinStar. Costing only about $1.38 million, Diamond D-Jet provides exemplary value and performance. It is thus far one of the cheapest Ultra-Light Jets. It is able to reach altitudes measuring about 25,000 feet in just about 15 minutes. Its maximum cruise speed is 315 knots and maximum range is 1,350 nautical miles.

Diamond D-Jet is also comparable easier to maneuver if pressurization is falling. Statistics of D-Jet revealed that it is a length of 35 feet, height of 11 feet, and wing span of 37 feet and cabin altitude of 8,000’ at FL250. The first flight of D-Jet was on April 18, 2006. The Federal Aviation Administration certification of the D-Jet is expected to be awarded to the aircraft early this 2008. With its small size, D-Jet is able to handle runways as short as 2,000 feet. Its total seating capacity is five with three people on the rear seat bench and two on the Executive Comfort Class.

The passenger seats are also made from the most exquisite leather and materials to ensure comfort for the weary travelers. The cabin reaches to about of 4.6 feet in height, 4.9 feet in width and 2.97 meters in length. Your baggage wouldn’t be a concern in the D-Jet. It has three large baggage areas that could surely accommodate all the stuff that you will be bringing.

I'm hearing jets in the HWA pattern recently.  We live right on the periphery.  These are unmistakably corporate-sized (relatively little) jets, not Cessnas. We no longer hear the AHEC run-ups and take-offs precisely between 7:50 and 8:00 every morning. 

 

 

 

 

 

From the AOPA: 

UNC moving toward new airport for Orange County

The University of North Carolina (UNC) is in the process of creating a new airport authority—the first step in building a new airport in Orange County—and AOPA has offered its active support.

AOPA has worked diligently for years to preserve the embattled Horace Williams Airport in Chapel Hill, N.C., or develop a replacement airport in Orange County. Recently, the state legislature granted the University of North Carolina system the right to create an airport authority, a necessary first step in developing a replacement airport, should Horace Williams ultimately be closed.

At a recent meeting with state aviation and UNC officials, AOPA Vice President of Regional Affairs Greg Pecoraro offered the association’s assistance.

“Having an airport in or near Chapel Hill is vital to the state’s air transportation system, and we are pleased to see the process moving forward,” Pecoraro said. “AOPA has been actively involved in this issue for many years. While we continue to encourage UNC to preserve Horace Williams, we want area residents to understand the importance and value of a keeping a general aviation airport in the Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill area.”

"“Having an airport in or near Chapel Hill is vital to the state’s air transportation system . . . " -- sez who? How d'ye figure?

I notice no one is offering to take any of my bets.

Catherine, I noticed heavy jet activity last week, too - it actually sounded like at least one twin-jet had to go around and try again.

Friday afternoon, there was a pair of F18 fighter planes practicing over Chapel Hill/ Carrboro.  The purposes of their maneuvers were to prepare for a flyover the following day at the UNC BC football game.  Apparently weather grounded the planned flight because I did not hear them on Saturday. I cannot imagine the planes took off or landed at HW.  My guess is they flew in from Cherry Point. Here is a photo of one of them.

 

 

John Rees

Man, I guess I'd go around too if my plane was too big to land on a postage stamp!  Then brake all the way to Argentina... please nobody correct my geography.  This is jet traffic for sure.  Not upsettingly loud, but definitely jets. 

UNC did acknowledge some years back that some jets do come into HW airport.  Not many, and not often, and not big ones.

 The issue of airport safety merits some response.  I like the one some years ago by the person who pointed out that the actuaries have come up with zero reason for people living near airports (or siting schools near airports, or on flight paths, etc.) to pay higher insurance rates than those who are not near an airport.The safety argument just won't wash, although there are those who will never get that into their heads.

 One brilliance of the Wright brothers was that they realized that flight could be possible by using a system that is inherently unstable.  They looked at it in a new way, and got it to work.  That's a good lesson!

"UNC did acknowledge ... " ? Let's be clear and honest here, it was quite a bit more than "acknowledging."

History: At the end of CD Spangler's era at UNC, he abruptly abrogated the existing agreement with the town that jets would not land at HWA, and did so unilaterally and stealthily. With no public notice, he extended the runway and installedJet A fuel storage. Then, when residents noticed jets landing and taking off, they called police and Town Hall, which in turn prompted inquiries at UNC -- and, surprise, the University (Spangler) said, in effect, "oh yes, the agreement is terminated and we're now having jets at HWA. Have a nice day."

Since then, jets do land at HWA with some regularity (no, it's not at all infrequent), although the runway is maybe a bit short for them by some standards -- but it's a pilot's decision and no one else's whether to deem a runway long enough to land.

About safety: This issue is something with which aviation advocates routinely play fast and loose using convenient statistics, choosing which set to use depending on whether they're trying to keep people from building near an airport or trying to keep an airport open near existing buildings. (They love to compare car-crash statistics with plane-crash statistics, despite huge problems of comparability, logic, scope, and consequences.)

Once again I will cite the Washington DOT Airport Land-Use Guidelines study

http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/NR/rdonlyres/5983B7EF-5061-48FF-8829-1359F783CD10/0/AirportsLandUse.pdf

which is based on statistics involving plane crash frequencies -- which are demonstrably higher in the vicinity of airports, logically enough, and which cluster in identifiable zones around the runway. Based on that clustering, probabilities were assigned, and based on the probabilities, recommendations are made regarding land use in each of the various zones.

Whether or not an insurance company sees any point to assigning differential rates has less to do with actual LOCAL probabilities and more with distribution of risk. We do not have a different auto insurance rate based on the block we happen to live on - which may NEVER have seen any accidents or thefts - because it's more reasonable to calculate rates based on accident frequency or theft over an entire city or state.

Liability, moreover, does not hinge on whether you can demonstrate that insurance companies have decided something about insurability - partly because (as we've learned with Wall Street) "past performance does not guarantee future results." Liability is incurred when there is documentation as well as common sense saying that a risk is present, and even more emphatically when history ("past performance") shows that the hazard did actually result in an accident and damage.

Planes do crash near airports. Planes have crashed near Horace Williams.

Perhaps the insurance companies figure that if damage results from a future crash, the liability would lie with the University, the plane owner, the pilot, and the Town.

John, the F18s practiced for a good hour last Friday in preparation for the planned fly-over at noon on Saturday.  They returned on Saturday without flying over the football stadium because of low visibility.  Otherwise everything happened on schedule, and the F18 pilots logged a little more flying time. It probably  takes them five minutes to get back to Cherry Point.  

The jet traffic I perceive is corporate-size jets flying into HWA, typically between 5 and 6 in the evening.  Hey, maybe it's those Carolina North developers from California here to court possible tenants. 

 

 

 

Odds are holding. From Dan Goldberg's report this morning in the CH Herald: http://heraldsun.southernheadlines.com/orange/10-1082046.cfm :
According to the terms of the resolution, construction on the Innovation Center must begin by 2011. Runberg said Horace Williams Airport can remain open while the Innovation Center is being built, but will have to close when construction on the new law school starts.In Jesse James DeConto's report in the N&O, he reports a project 2013 opening date for the IC: http://www.newsobserver.com/264/story/1384523.html
So now what's the ETA on the law school and the AHEC facility at RDU?  I'm guessing no time soon, especially given the economy.  
(Edited for corrections:  Duplicate posting at http://www.orangepolitics.org/eta-on-the-innovation-center#comment-6591 )  

Ever the cynic, I can't help noting the difference between keeping HWA "open" and simply leaving it where it is for a while.  Does open mean operating?  UNC gave AHEC the boot at least five years ago as a preliminary step toward closing the airport for good, presumably to make way for Carolina North.  Maybe soon HWA will serve as the designated parking/staging area for CN construction vehicles...? 

Confused.  To my knowledge, the Medical Air flights are still coming and going.  Perhaps you're thinking of the CH Flying Club?   Otherwise, there could well be a time gap between relocation of AHEC to RDU and tearing up the runway - but I'd expect some pressure to keep lights on and buildings heated as long as a runway is still there, until and unless the law school buildings are actually under construction.  So far in the future, so many dollars to collect and hurdles to navigate ...

I'm not confusing this with the previous eviction of the Flying Club.  The two events occurred not too far apart.  The AHEC eviction was announced in connection with the airport's imminent closing.  We no longer hear the AHEC planes run up at 7:50 every morning, but other HWA traffic hasn't ceased (yet). 

AHEC has planes departing every morning, usually starting anytime after 6 AM, unless the run requires an earlier departure.  This week's departure report shows seven AHEC departures and eight arrivals since Monday.

Have we spent the last two years discussing AHEC for no reason?  Now that the program is safe until 2012, I guess we can drop the subject. 

First the AHEC program has more going on than just the air operations.  Remember too that the AHEC planes also fly UNC administrative missions as well as those in support of the AHEC educational component.The program will continue irrespective of where the planes take off and land.  What is unclear is how long that will take place at HWA. If you go to http://flightaware.com/live/airport/KIGX/ you can see the variety of traffic on a daily basis.

I just did some poking around on the flightaware website; it's unbelievable how many flights into and out of Horace Willams airport have absolutely nothing to do with the University. It seems that AHEC flights are relatively few and far between.

That's exactly what Thorp and everyone else came to understand. The AHEC program was the entity that the Airline Owners & Pilots Association and the buisness special interests were using as a Trojan horse.

IDs

Just to add information for those not familiar with the flightaware site, you can roll your cursor over the "ident" number (N-number) to see who the owner of record is - but shortcut re: AHEC is to know that any ID number ending in CH is a Medical Air plane.

Two-plus years later, airport advocates may no longer even need the striident, melodramatic, and often wildly distorting rhetoric about "life-saving AHEC flights" being the reason the university and the state legislature should keep HWA in operation.   Recent rumors -- concerning which I'd welcome fact-based confirmation or refutation --  indicate that although the AHEC planes will be moving into new facilities at RDU during the summer, the University plans to keep Horace Williams Airport open and operating.   Justification for that may entail hopes of attracting CN development (however ill-advised that may be for legal/liability/safety or logistical reasons).  Or the justification may be what it always has been - to keep general aviation advocates, wealthy alumni and/or college sports fans, or private-sector corporate contractors happy.  Is it time to revise my estimate of the odds, to include "AHEC leaves but airport remains open indefinitely," odds at about 9.8 in 10?  

At UNC's semi-annual report to the CH Town Council on Monday Anna Wu and Bruce Rundberg reported that the airport will stay open until construction on the 1st building at Carolina North begins. And since there is currently no building plan in the works...

Thank you so much, George. Sorry if this was reported in local news and I missed it.OK, revised the odds, probably for the last time. (Apologies for messy editing.)Hearing echoes of my cynical self three years ago: "They'll never close that airport, not in my lifetime."  Thinking Carolina North probably may not get far in my lifetime, either, not while the Great Recession refuses to pack up and leave. Of course,  if/when it does pack up and leave, air traffic will increase; and the whole debate about the worth and value of keeping the airport will start over again, complete with renewed thoughts of building CN around it.  Also seeing another victory for heavily endowed special-interest politics, backroom deals, expert public-relations spindocs, and taxpayer support for the well-to-do -- as always, well-played via sequential strategies of extravagant public bluster, behind-the-scenes gotchas, and creative, patient use of delay.  Oh, but by the way, it still is a terrible place for an active airport.  There are still schools, churches, a Y, heavy ground traffic, and many homes in the area.  There's still a history of and potential for accidents, and therefore still a matter of liability, if not conscience.

"terrible place for an active airport.  There are still schools, churches, a Y, heavy ground traffic, and many homes in the area".  Of which one of the schools, a couple of the expansions, and many of the homes were built LONG after Horace Williams was opened.   Don't really agree or disagree with you, just pointing out that your posting seems to disparage the airport as being in the wrong place, when, by your logic, CHCCS should have never built Smith Middle or expanded on to CHHS, and there are several neighborhoods and MANY redevelopments that should have never passed planning if the airport was an issue.  Just sayin'; . . . let's try to be fair to everyone.

OK, let's try to be fair, indeed:  You're offering a variation on the basic "airport was there first" argument, which sidesteps the history involved.  Yes, the airport was "there first" although not originally conceived of as a general aviation facility, let alone one serving University sports and related interests.  However, at one time roughly the end of the 70s - early 80s, the University announced - nay, declared - that they were unequivocally closing and moving the airport to an undisclosed but "firm" location in northern Orange County; all details ostensibly were in place.  The plans were so definite that construction of the schools, houses, etc. went forth in that era, with nary a question.  The reversal of the plan was abrupt and unexplained, and so there it is.  Now we can come up to more recent history, in which density of the town's growth has thickened in the area, while the University again has announced, renounced, announced, and renounced plans to close and/or move the airport.  And in the meantime, we have had a string of accidents and some - shall we say - unfortunate behavior on the part of members of the now-departed Flying Club, as well as increasingly heavy-handed tactics to ensure that airport/general aviation interests maintain clear priority over community interests - the reality of life "on the ground" notwithstanding.  

UNC keeping the Horace Williams facility up and running undoubtedly isn't cheap and, now that AHEC is moving to RDU, it seems like a huge waste of tax payer money. Whatever happened to the notion of the university cutting unnecessary expenses?

Interesting timing for this book launch UNC professor’s ‘aerotropolis’ vision goes worldwide

In his new book, “Aerotropolis: The Way We’ll Live Next,” professor John
Kasarda purports that cities should be built around airports, which he
calls the “physical Internet.

I agree that the UNC backroom deal playbook will continue to be further refined here.

"Aerotrpolis"  (saw review in NYT book review) dovetails nicely with Jim Heavner's prediction that in some future year everyone will be "driving" their own private plane.  Do these people even think about what I-40 - nevermind the Jersey Pike or the DC Beltway - looks like at rush hour?  What if all those people were in planes?  But that's another thread.

In image format:

Is that critique meant to convey the following:  It's bad to build towns around airports because airports won't exist much longer since oil is running out.  If so then I have to disagree.  Do we really think that the time is going to come when large numbers of people just don't fly anymore?  Is nature such that there is one specific technology (flying) depends entirely on one specific substance (oil) and after we're out of the latter we won't be able to do the former?  Here is the best critique IMO, in the short term at least, against the idea of an aerotropolis.  It's a two pronged critique.  1. People hate living hear airports. 2. You can't make people live where they don't want to live.Then again I haven't read the book and I don't know specifically what it entails.   If the author is referring to an airport of the future where things are different than today then maybe there's some validity to it.

Does anyone out there know how to find out how much it will cost UNC to keep the airport up and running for private, non-university use?

A few weeks ago I received the book Aerotropolis: The Way We'll Live Next as a gift in the mail from Amazon. Probably via airmail.... Here was my response to the person who sent it to me:

This one seems particularly interesting to me for a few reasons. 1) I'm not a huge fan of flying. It makes me ill. 2) One of the Authors is a prof at the UNC Business School here in Chapel Hill 3) i'm highly skeptical of the merits of globalization and think that its not sustainable. There are many reasons but not the least of which is fuel for airplanes. The global Oil supply has peaked. Planes use a lot of it. Then there is terrorism and the increasing inefficiency of airports.

BUT I'm looking forward to the points and arguments in the book. Always looking for ideas to transform my thinking. Especially when I have my entrepreneur's hat on.

I haven't finished the book and I try to stay open minded.

For Municipal Internet and High-Speed Rail.

Neighborhoodopolis.

The authorizing legislation for an airport authority that would enable UNC to build an airport in OC is now gone.http://www.carrborocitizen.com/main/2011/06/30/airport-authority-legisla... As quoted in the article*, the repeal came as part of "elimination of certain state boards and commissions that have not met recently,
are duplicative or are not deemed critical." With due respect to activist opponents of the once-proposed OC airport:  the repeal has largely to do with housekeeping and the fact that HWA will remain open, in effect indefinitely -- despite the departure of the AHEC flights that were once invoked as the urgent, heart-rending justification for keeping HWA.There may be some nod to public opinion in going to the trouble of actually repealing the bill for public notice.  However, in the (unlikely?) event that the economy in general and the fortunes of UNC in particular recover to their pre-2007 levels -- or at least enough to start building that glorious "City Upon a Hill" called Carolina North -- the same issues and a similar authority could reappear.  Meanwhile, no need; HW airport isn't going anywhere, despite its costs to university, taxpayers, and community.*(Note: a similar article by Mark Schultz appeared in the N&O.  It ran with an odd final paragraph that spun the story to the effect that compared to HWA the new airport would have made OC millions of dollars, but it failed to note opposition, objections, or costs.) 

I agree with the reality that you describe, Priscilla. However, it was worth the effort put in by a couple of my neighbors to pursue this with legislators and put a stake in its heart. Reality has not prven to be much of an obstacle when it comes to tunnel-visioned power wielders trying to get what they feel they are entitled to, so I am grateful for the effort that formalized this. It is a real achievement. 

I think the repeal has a lot of significance.  It says that this was never the right process to begin with.  Hopefully this stake is made of silver so this monster will not come back from the dead.

 

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