1,000 Point Loma Residents Sound Off at FAA Meeting

by on October 7, 2015 · 9 comments

in Civil Rights, Environment, Health, History, Life Events, Ocean Beach, Organizing, San Diego

Pt Loma FAA meet 10-6-15

Screen capture from CBS8 of Liberty Station public FAA meeting, Oct 6, 2015.

An estimated one thousand residents from Point Loma jammed the FAA meeting last night, Tuesday Oct. 6th, in Liberty Station and many sounded off about the proposed new flight paths.

The proposed changes will – in all likelihood – bring east-bound planes that take off west over Point Loma close to or even over the Peninsula.

The current flight path has jets – once they take off over the Peninsula (including OB where it’s called the “OB Pause”) – they make a wide turn and fly south over the ocean and cross over the lightly populated area near Silver Strand State Beach.

But the new path would have airliners make a sharper turn, crossing Point Loma. saving fuel and pollution, the FAA claims.

Residents complained about not only the noise, but the pollution, the effect on their quality of life, as well as the effect on property values.  FAA staff at the meeting tried to reassure the protesters that they were listening to the public.Public comments are due tomorrow, Oct. 8th.  (The email address for public comment is 9-ANM-SoCalOAPM@faa.gov.)

Residents’ frustration and anger rose at the beginning of the meeting when it was announced that no questions would be answered and neither public comments nor questions were not being recorded.

One woman told the assembled FAA panel “this meeting is totally useless.”

FAA Regional Manager Glen Martin stated to the packed house:

“Whatever you have to say, give us that comment so we can respond to it while we go further into the process. There is no decision made at this point.”

NBC7 described it:

It was standing room only for the unveiling of the FAA’s proposed flight path changes in and out of San Diego International Airport. Emotions ran high for those that oppose the changes at the public meeting held Tuesday evening in Liberty Station. …

The FAA and Airport Authority were expecting a lively discussion but not this.  “You work for us,” one Point Loma resident said. …

Those at the public hearing with comments felt that same deaf ear moment in front of the blank stare from FAA and Airport Authority representatives.

“We’re here for a meeting to give comments but none of our comments are being recorded. None of our questions are being answered,” another resident said.  There were chairs for 400, but the opposition to the FAA’s SoCal Metroplex plan was nearly twice that.

Fox5 reported:

More than 1,000 frustrated Point Loma residents packed a public meeting  …. The majority of residents showed up to protest the proposal. … Many residents say they believe their quality of life is diminishing, property values will plunge, and that federal officials tried to quietly pass the proposal without notifying the community.  …

Dozens of people argued against the proposal, and no one spoke in favor of the new flight path.

Most of the residents who spoke with FOX 5 said they were outraged that the FAA gave them no warning of the plan and did not accept public comment.

(Editor: our OB Rag reporter who was to attend and report on the meeting but because there were so many people she could not find parking space – as she was in a wheelchair.)

 

 

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Avatar nostalgic October 7, 2015 at 10:06 am

9-ANM-SoCalOAPM@faa.gov – Only objections filed by October 8 will be considered by the FAA. Please send a quick email, asking the FAA to re-evaluate their position. I hope this is the right e-mail address; very little publicity provided about exactly how to do this. Minneapolis was successful in getting their FAA ruling reversed. It took a LOT of people.

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Avatar michele pesik October 7, 2015 at 11:16 am

I oppose the FAA proposed changes! They need to go through the correct process of noitifying the public of the the changes they want. I do not believe anything in their report because of how sneaky they are being at trying to get the flight path changed. I think the city needs to also strongly oppose this as it will drop property valvues and therefore they will collect less money in those taxes.

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Avatar unWASHedwallmartTHONG October 7, 2015 at 1:52 pm

The FAA will screw you. The PUC will screw you. The water districts will screw you. SDGE will screw you.
We’re screwed.

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Avatar Jon October 7, 2015 at 2:18 pm

What an amazingly diverse looking crowd of concerned citizens. Looks like the same group that came out in droves to protest the VFW many moons ago. Wish the same numbers came out to protest budget cuts, crumbling infrastructure and the proliferation of bed and breakfasts pushing out long term residents that rent in our neighborhoods. As someone who’s had planes flying overhead for 2 decades, I couldnt care less about this issue.

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Avatar Christo October 7, 2015 at 2:44 pm

You choose to live with planes flying over your head. We did not. We paid a premium to NOT have planes flying over our heads.

And yes- I’m protesting STVRs and budget cuts and crumbling infrastructure and the VFW (because a private bar has no place next to a school).

OB isn’t diverse anyways- look at the demographic data.

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Avatar Cory October 7, 2015 at 2:32 pm

It’s hard for me to get behind this since the proposed change will put the planes at approx 6-8000 ft over Cabrillo Monument when just 20 seconds prior they were at about 1000 ft and much louder as they pass over my house in OB. Directly overhead as I live just off Voltaire. It seems like an awful lot of stressing over a change that most people won’t notice since its at the tip of the point.

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Avatar Colin October 7, 2015 at 3:23 pm

Good luck. Neither the FAA nor the SDCRAA nor the SD Mayor’s office could care less about residential complaints about flight path changes. In my experience, I recall that in summer 2009 the airport began directing more and more outbound flights further south of the agreed upon flight paths over north OB and south MB. The pretext was a Runway C refurbishment temporarily requiring a few more southerly overflights for a brief period, but, wham, all the sudden, it south overflights all the time. At the time, a lot of newly impacted residents complained. But the airport’s flight tracker magically did not show these deviations. And the SDCRAA responded by essentially telling everyone that they were seeing things, it’s just parallax, the planes are really further north than you think you’re seeing them (which was pretty insulting; we’re all crazy, mass hysteria). They also suggested it’s just the wind drifting planes further south. They said these things, but yet then-councilman Faulconer’s office issued a public letter to the SDCRAA advising that flights return to their normal flight paths. So, I guess residents and Faulconer were just crazy according to FAA/SDCRAA (not that I think Faulconer would go against the airport, regardless; for him, that letter was most likely for appearances). And when airport relocation was somehow put to a popular vote without a full disclosure beforehand that the airport was going to greatly expand (increasing daily flight volume to holiday volume), well, everyone voted to keep the airport in the city. The airport is now fanning flight paths across the entire peninsula, as far south as they like, and a few thousand peninsula homeowners are not going to deter them, especially since the power of the city and the county are behind the multi-billion dollar airport expansion.

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Avatar Debbie October 7, 2015 at 6:21 pm

Was Zapf and Wear at the meeting?

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Avatar Korla Eaquinta October 7, 2015 at 9:55 pm

Yes. Councilwoman Zapf made a speech at the beginning of the meeting and Conrad Wear from her office stayed the entire meeting. John Ly from Mayor Faulconer’s office also attended the entire meeting. I have email copies of official letters of opposition from Councilwoman Zapf, Mayor Falconer and Scott Peters. Toni Atkins just sent a notice for the meeting. All are opposed and have written official letters to the FAA. The PCPB has submitted an official letter in position as well.

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