U.S. fast-tracks Phila. runway plan

DCAflyer

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Aug 27, 2002
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Posted on Fri, Nov. 01, 2002 -- Philadelphia Inquirer

U.S. fast-tracks Phila. runway plan
The airport made a federal list to get a quicker environmental review. Still, the soonest new runways will be ready is 2010.
By Marcia Gelbart
Inquirer Staff Writer
A billion-dollar plan for new runways at Philadelphia International Airport was flagged yesterday by the U.S. Transportation Department as a high-priority project to receive speedier environmental reviews.
The agency included the runway proposal on an initial list of seven federal transportation projects singled out to receive similar expedited reviews under an executive order issued in September by President Bush.
Average environmental reviews of airport runways generally take at least three years; federal officials could not say yesterday how much less time would be needed now that Philadelphia was prioritized.
So far, Philadelphia is the only airport to be fast-tracked, which means it will get special attention from at least three federal agencies that must conduct the environmental reviews.
An FAA spokeswoman, Marcia Adams, said Philadelphia''s airport was chosen because resolving issues here would help with [air] congestion in the Mid-Atlantic region.
But it is too soon to say whether the speedier review will result in an earlier start of runway construction. The soonest new runways would become operational is still 2010, according to the consultant in charge of the project for Philadelphia''s airport.
It is something that will hopefully allow for the environmental process to move along more quickly, Allan R. A''Hara of DMJM Aviation said. It''s not going to allow anybody to shortcut anything.
The city-owned airport has spent the last two years assessing how to create a new runway layout to reduce congestion at Philadelphia, which is one of the most delay-prone airports in the nation.
Led by A''Hara, an airport team has developed two design options that would include a combination of building new runways and extending existing ones.
One option would create four new parallel runways diagonal to the main runways. The other would mean creating three parallel runways by extending three that already exist and building a new one.
The final project cost for each option has not been evaluated, but officials have said it would range from $1 billion to $2 billion.
The team had hoped to settle on a design by December. But yesterday, A''Hara said that no decision would be made until after the environmental-impact statement, required by the Federal Aviation Administration, was completed for both design options.
For every pro on one [option], there''s a con on the other, and vice versa, A''Hara said. So FAA recommended that the [environmental studies] help contribute to that decision.
The other plans prioritized are surface transportation projects in Riverside County, Calif; Stillwater, Minn.; New Hampshire; Vermont; Texas; and a single bridge project reaching across Kentucky, Indiana and Ohio.
 

Eris

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Nov 1, 2002
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... environmental reviews of PHL...

So far, Philadelphia is the only airport to be fast-tracked, which means it will get special attention from at least three federal agencies that must conduct the environmental reviews.



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[/blockquote]


environmental review of PHL?

Try as I might, I just can't see how I am supposed to take that seriously...

Wait, wait, my apologies. I now see how it will work. Three Federal Agencies will use a fast track method...


“No Sir, Philadelphia is not in the Garden State, That is New Jersey.â€￾

--anonymous caller to 1-800-PHL-KLUE