By Mike Dunn
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — It’s a big thumbs-down from at least one Delaware County official after the Nutter administration offers an alternate plan for the expansion of Philadelphia International Airport.
The original airport expansion plan, already approved by the FAA (see related story), would move United Parcel Service’s airport facility to a location in Tinicum Township, and would necessitate the removal of 72 homes and ten businesses (see related story).
Rina Cutler, Philadelphia’s deputy mayor for transportation, says the alternate plan would have UPS in a different location, saving the homes and lessening the noise.
“One, it preserves the 72 houses. And two, it really moves the overnight UPS noise much further away from the community. It would take the vast majority of the overnight airline flights away from the neighborhood,” she tells KYW Newsradio.
But Pennsylvania state representative Nick Miccarelli of Delaware County doesn’t care for the new plan, since smaller freight carriers like Fedex would end up closer to the neighborhood.
“Their homes would not be demolished, but nobody would want to live in them, with these loud cargo jets taking off and arriving in the middle of the night,” Miccarelli says.
But Cutler says the smaller carriers have far fewer overnight flights than UPS — — she estimated a half-dozen nightly versus dozens for UPS.
The Nutter administration will present its alternate to the FAA for approval. Miccarelli, meantime, hopes the state legislature will move toward creating a regional authority to run the airport.
“So far we have not seen a plan from the city that would help anyone but the city,” he says.