Mayoral Candidate Richard Alcaron is introducing a bill this week to create a countywide authority to create a new international aiport in North Los Angeles County in order to relieve congestion at LAX. The Daily News reports that Alarcon states this could include an expansion of the current airport in Palmdale owned by the City of Los Angeles (my idea by the way when I was Mayor) . Alarcon's feeling is that other regional airports such as Burbank, John Wayne, Long Beach and Ontario are not sufficient enough to carry the ever expanding air traffic in Southern California.
The airport in Palmdale was purchased by the city during my administration in1971 and saw on again and off again traffic, however it has been shuttered since 1998. Recent efforts to revive use of the airport include the development of a new airline "Air Palmdale" by Westchester area businessman and anti-LAX expansion activist, Robert Acherman, and the coming this month of regional service to Las Vegas by tour operator Scenic Airlines.
When you consider that the City already owns much of the land in Palmdale and has the facilities necessary - the option of Palmdale makes so much more sense than LAX expansion. To top it off, the residents in Palmdale are looking to the airport to service them and provide much needed economic development. Of the $11 billion to spent on LAX, you could build out Palmdale, build a rail line from there to LAX and still have a good chunk of change left over.
But lets not leave it politicians to do what makes sense. That plan doesn't compensate the unions and the special interests as well as Hahn's $11 billion boondoggle.