Airport Expansion Federal Lawsuit Filed
Ignoring more than a decade of vehement public and citizen opposition, on October 16, 2023, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) approved the 3,476-page Environmental Assessment (EA) for the proposed expansion of Ann Arbor Municipal Airport. The finding of no significant environmental impact (FONSI) and the Record of Decision (ROD) now permit the Ann Arbor City Council to vote on whether the airport’s current 3,505-foot runway should be extended to 4,225 feet, adding 720 feet to the western end of Runway 6 / 24 and shifting another 150 feet from the east to west end of the runway.
That brings the runway almost three football fields closer to busy Lohr Road, which landing aircraft would cross at just 49 feet above passing cyclists on the adjacent non-motorized Lohr-Textile Greenway bike path. However, the EA’s printed 100-page narrative tells only the positive half of the story, with the other critical half of the story buried deep in the remaining 3,500 pages of Appendices, which contain facts airport expansion advocates would just as soon people not know.
In response to the FAA-MDOT irresponsible EA-FONSI approval, kept under wraps by airport officials until it was publicly revealed six weeks later, on December 15, Pittsfield Charter Township and the grassroots Committee for Preserving Community Quality (CPCQ) filed an appeal in the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit against the U.S. Department of Transportation and its Secretary Pete Buttigieg, the FAA and its Administrator Michael Whitaker, and MDOT and its Director Bradley C. Wieferich, to block the deeply flawed EA / FONSI.
To read the basis for the filing, please click on CPCQ Position Paper, composed by Andy McGill.
To send comments and questions to the CPCQ, email to Communitypreservation09@yahoo.com.