Westchester County Airport Expansion- March 18, 2016
Westchester County Airport (WCA) was built during the 1940s as a small airport for National Guard use. By the early 1980s it had grown so much - as a mostly general aviation airport with some commercial flights - that the noise impact from the flights was affecting residents for miles around the airport. A voluntary legal agreement between the County and the airlines was reached to put limits on the commercial flights and the size of the terminal, which has been in effect since that time. It has been responsible for limiting the uncontrolled growth of WCA, and has been a crucial tool in protecting Westchester's environmental quality by preventing - or mitigating- the significant (often overwhelming) air pollution, water pollution and noise impacts caused by large airports all across the country.
This Conversation on Conservation discussed the proposed changes to the airport passenger limitations, the history of the work that has gone into keeping the size of Westchester County Airport under control, and the concerns surrounding the environmental impacts of any changes to the current law.