Tweed’s Future Sparks Stormy Hearing

Markeshia Ricks PhotoOne argument: Start-ups and out of town developers who see a potential for profit shouldn’t dictate the fate of a neighborhood.

A counter-argument: Neighbors who knowingly move near airport shouldn’t be allowed to hold the city and the state economically hostage.

Those were two of the prevailing sentiments aired over more than three hours at City Hall Wednesday night during a public hearing of the Board of Alders Community Development Committee.

The committee was taking testimony on a resolution to support a state proposal to revisit a compromise on the length of the runway at Tweed New Haven airport so it can be expanded by 1,000 feet by paving existing safety areas, welcome more commercial jets — and, in the view of city officials and business leaders, boost the local economy.

As usual with the subject of Tweed in New Haven, that sparked an outcry from homeowners in Morris Cove, who blasted city officials for not dealing honestly with them and complained of the airport’s impact on their neighborhood.

State House Bill 5350 would eliminate a provision in state law that restricts Tweed’s runway to 5,600 linear feet and open the door for a pilot program for shared solar power are under consideration by the state General Assembly during the session that ends May 9. In addition to making way for the Tweed runway expansion, the bill also would close the second smaller “14-32” runway. The Harp administration is looking for a nonbinding aldermanic vote of support the state bill to help get it over the goal line.

If alders want to weigh in with their support they needed to take action—or rather no action, which they voted to do Wednesday—so that the full board can vote the resolution up or down during the board’s next full meeting on May 7. So now it’s up to the full board to decide which side it agrees with.

The Tweed expansion quest has prompted passionate views on both sides in New Haven. Mayor Toni Harp and business officials call a 6,600-foot runway crucial for luring smaller jets that will lead to commercial service to Florida, Washington D.C., and maybe Chicago. Neighbors call the proposal a broken promise to keep service limited and an infringement on their peace of mind.

More than 100 people packed the aldermanic chamber for the hearing, and more than 30 of those people stuck around to rehash both sides of those arguments. The prominent business — and labor — leaders lining up to speak included the new CEO of the Greater New Haven Chamber of Commerce, Garrett Sheehan, UNITE Here Local 35 and Central Labor Council President Bob Proto, and Digital Surgeons founder and DISTRICT developer David Salinas.

Harp’s economic development administrator team testified for the first hour. They noted that since she’s been in office the mayor has championed expanding the airport’s commercial operations. City and airport officials argued that expansion of the runway would allow the airport to attract more carriers, which could mean more flights and easier accessibility for those trying to get in and out of the region.

Tim Larson, executive director for the airport and a state senator, told alders that right now much of the airport traffic that could be captured by Tweed is going to New York. More flights and accessibility could mean greater economic opportunity for not only New Haven, but all of southern Connecticut, proponents argued.

Harp’s team also shared some preliminary details of a “community benefit” package that they believe could mitigate some of the concerns neighbors have about the impact of an expanded runway might have on traffic, the environment and the future economic viability of the city.

City Engineer Giovanni Zinn laid out several ways to slow traffic including reconfiguring the intersection of Dodge Avenue and Burr Street by installing a roundabout to slow traffic down.

“It’s a quiet way to slow down traffic,” he said.

Michael Piscitelli, the deputy economic development administrator, said that right now the airport supports about 500 jobs and has a $55 million impact. Another 300 jobs could be added if the runway is expanded and that could have an estimated $32 million impact.

Same Old Song

Opponents said they’ve heard the old “If you expand it, they will come” tune before. They said they heard that when the city struck an agreement with East Haven to restrict the runway to its current length and then had it cemented—or so they thought—in this 2009 accord.

Citizen watchdog Gary Doyens, who lives across town in Westville, testified on the Morris Cove neighbors’ side. He called the new proposal a “bum rush.” He admonished alders not to take a vote until neighbors are willing to sign off on it. He also suggested they stand with neighbors against the bills moving through Hartford. He said he’s been hearing the same expansion talk for Tweed for at least 20 years and the goalpost for a successful airport has been moving for just as long.

“This is not something that should be shoved down peoples’ throats,” he said.

Sean O’Brien, who lives on Alfred Street just behind the airport, pointed out to alders that the public hearing was the first time that he and his neighbors had heard about the community benefits package that city officials “dropped in our laps” Wednesday. He also chastised city and airport officials for having no buy-in from East Haven, where part of the airport sits.

Rachel Hareema, who lives on Lighthouse Road, said that though people have argued that many homeowners in the neighborhood knew they would be living next to an airport, she bought her house in 2012 with the understanding that there wouldn’t be further expansion of the runway. That same year she, and everybody else would learn how real climate change was when she and other neighbors had to evacuate for Superstorm Sandy.

She expressed concern that creating more impervious surface around Tweed, which acts as a water retention area for the neighborhood, would leave the neighborhood further unprotected from these stronger storms and higher tidal surges and flooding, that no one could have predicted in 1931 when the airport first opened.

Carpe Diem

While there was a strong show of opposition, the majority of those who testified Wednesday night supported expanding Tweed’s runway. And for them, the benefit to existing businesses that want to grow and to attracting potential benefits outweigh any perceived negatives.

Barry Nalebuff, a professor in the Yale School of Management, tried to bring some scale back to the conversation by pointing out that Tweed has about 60 flights a day. Only six of them are commercial flights.

He said it would make a significant difference if Tweed had a runway that would allow for an additional five commerical departures and landings a day. That could be helpful to entrepreneurs like him who live here but go wherever their work takes them, he said. It also would make the city more attractive to dual career couples.

“New Haven is a wonderful place to live, a wonderful place to raise kids, but a terrible place to work,” he said.

Nina Fawcett doesn’t live in Morris Cove but she does know what it’s like to live in a neighborhood with a nuisance. She lives in Newhallville where residents have waited for years to be rid of the police department’s firing range (which is happening).

She said the city and regional need for more jobs have to outweigh concerns about inconveniences like traffic. Fawcett said she’d choose an airport in Newhallville over the firing range any day.

“The jobs can’t come if they can’t get here,” she said. “I recognize that it’s upsetting…but sometimes you have to do something for the greater good.”

The 2018 Agenda

Bill #StatusSummarySponsors
HB 5001In Committee
Died on the Floor
To impose a fee on transactions involving virtual currency.Pat Dillon
HB 5031
SB 4
In Committee
Committee Approved
Sent to the Floor
Gov. Signed
To allow students to have equal access to institutional financial aid.Higher Education and Employment Advancement Committee
HB 5082In Committee
Committee Approved
Died on the Floor
To provide state funds to assist hurricane victims from Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands who are living in Connecticut.Juan Candelaria
HB 5126In Committee
Died on the Floor
To increase funding to boards of education and family resource centers that provide assistance to students and families from Puerto Rico.Juan Candelaria
HB 5112In Committee
Sent to the Floor
Died on the Floor
To permit the retail sale of marijuana and tax such sale to raise revenue for the General Fund and to fund substance abuse treatment, prevention, education and awareness programs.Juan R. Candelaria, Angel Arce, Josh Elliott, Steven J. Stafstrom, Jeff Currey, Susan M. Johnson, Chris Soto, Patricia A. Dillon, Roland J. Lemar, James M. Albis, Christopher Rosario, Kim Rose, Robyn A. Porter, Edwin Vargas, Matthew Lesser, Gregory Haddad, Joshua Malik Hall, Ezequiel Santiago, Diana S. Urban, Toni E. Walker, Robert Sanchez, Alphonse Paolillo
SB 1In Committee
Died on the Floor
To expand the sick leave program to provide earned family and medical leave to certain individuals employed in this state.Martin M. Looney, Bob Duff, Timothy D. Larson, Steve Cassano, Beth Bye, Terry B. Gerratana, Gary A. Winfield, Ted Kennedy, Catherine A. Osten, Marilyn V. Moore, Edwin A. Gomes, Mae Flexer
SB 62In Committee
Died on the Floor
To provide tuition-free community college for Connecticut residents.Martin M. Looney
HB 5182In Committee
Committee Approved
Sent to the Floor
Died on the Floor
To require building officials in certain municipalities to establish and assess a fee for the commencement of certain work without a necessary permit.Planning and Development Committee
HB 5210In Committee
Committee Approved
Sent to the Floor
To (1) mandate insurance coverage of essential health benefits, (2) expand mandated health benefits for women, children and adolescents, and (3) expand mandated contraception benefits.Insurance and Real Estate Committee
HB 5084In Committee
Died on the Floor
To encourage the recycling of nip bottles that otherwise frequently litter urban areas.Roland J. Lemar and Juan R. Candelaria
HB 5350
HB 5537
In Committee
Committee Denied
Sent to the Floor
Died on the Floor
To create a pilot program for shared solar facilities at municipal airports. The bill also would delete the provision that dictates the length of Tweed Airport’s runway.Energy and Technology Committee
HB 5475In Committee
Committee Approved
Sent to the Floor
To amend statutory provisions concerning a police officer’s viewing of a recording from body-worn recording equipment under certain circumstances.Judiciary Committee
HB 5515 In Committee
Committee Approved
Sent to the Floor
To permit a zoning commission to regulate the brightness and illumination of advertising signs and billboards.Judiciary Committee
HB 5540In Committee
Committee Approved
Sent to the Floor
Died on the Floor
To ban guns without serial numbers and regulate those which are sold in a form requiring the purchaser to finish assembly or that are homemade and to permit local authorities to interview immediate family members as part of a determination of an applicant's suitability.Judiciary Committee
HB 5542In Committee
Committee Approved
Sent to the Floor
To ban the sale or transfer, possession, manufacturing or use of bump stocks or other accessories to increase the rate of fire of a firearm.Judiciary Committee

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posted by: anonymous on April 26, 2018  8:04am

Paving the safety area is a do-or-die for CT’s economy. CT’s economy hinges on a successful New Haven area. However, businesses won’t come here if there are no flights within an hour. Existing businesses won’t stay here. Conferences, events, agencies that make grants, etc., also tend to stay away. These are simple facts. Just try to bring an event here — everyone will suggest you host it in Hartford.

Going to Bradley is OK a couple times a year to visit family, but doesn’t cut it for business travel given distance and traffic issues.  Expanding rapid mass transit there in a meaningful way to fix that would cost $5 billion.

posted by: RetiredGuy on April 26, 2018  8:20am

I’m pretty sure that heated discussions of expanding the Tweed runway date back to 1871.  Or maybe it just seems that way.

posted by: Stylo on April 26, 2018  8:40am

Once again the NIMBY’s on a mission to halt any economic progress of the city. Ironically they are the same ones that will complain against Yale’s power, while preventing the city from diversifying its economy.

posted by: Sean O'Brien on April 26, 2018  8:51am

“Paving the safety area is a do-or-die for CT’s economy”

Exaggeration, much?  If that were true, the City+airport would not need to sneak this into a bill that’s ostensibly about solar energy.

* The BOA is being asked to support legislation that has already been pushed to the State level by the City, without any community meetings or discussion with the East Shore Management Team.  This alder meeting is after-the-fact, an attempt to retroactively prove that proper process was followed.  Likewise, we are having a community meeting at 6pm on Monday at Jepson School, not at Nathan Hale next to the airport.  Last go-round, we had flyers distributed to the neighborhood and a big campaign by the Harp administration to get us on board.  This time, we only heard about any of this via our alder Sal DeCola posting it online at the last minute (and the NHv Indy having the BOA meeting posted).

* HB 5537 *removes all limits on Tweed’s expansion*.  Given recent history and Tweed’s willingness to break the 2009 MOA and upend the Tweed Airport Authority Act (not a “little piece of legislation” as Mr. Nemerson characterizes it), we should not accept the premise that expansion will stay within the current fences and limited to 6600 feet.  The Tweed Master Plan from 2002, still the airport’s strategic planning document, calls for 7200 feet.

* HB 5537 has a vague plan for solar energy that Tweed ED Larson himself admits is *primarily for the benefit of the airport* and there “could” “may” be additional energy generated for residents.  There are no further details.  Since HB 5537 also calls for this facility to not be an “energy supplier” (something the OCC is not happy about), there’s no avenue for residents to choose it as a supplier anyway (again, by design).

* The BOA was delivered plans that completely transform the neighborhood yesterday (with *zero* reduction in traffic) and expected to vote in support of them.  Would any other Ward/neighborhood accept this?  Why should we?

posted by: Sean O'Brien on April 26, 2018  9:00am

I just want to be clear here that we do very much thank Sal for letting us know about this meeting and the one on Monday, and also all of the alders for patiently listening to us into the late hours last night.

The only disorderly conduct was on the airport expansion support side by a “business leader” interrupting a Morris Cove resident and comparing us to people who don’t believe in the moon landing.

posted by: Noteworthy on April 26, 2018  10:04am

Tweedle Dee Dee Notes:

1. The level of dishonesty re: Tweed runway expansion is breathtaking. The claims of economic prosperity, jobs, service areas and Tweed viability are just as remarkable - untrue and mythical. 

2. As we’ve seen at the state level, the claims of job creation, retention and economic impact are stunningly overstated. How you get 100 jobs and a $55 million impact from current operations is some new math.

3. But most egregious is the continued effort by Tweed, it’s executive director Tim Larson and the Tweed board to make agreements, then move the finish line. It ends one fight only and a short time later, start it all over again. There is zero guarantee that if this law repealing the 2009 agreement is approved, this will end. If an agreement all signed to can be overturned through a scam/sham environmental bill hatched by Roland Lemar and his BFFs - then no agreement now will stand later.

4. The community benefits agreement - which is more a grocery list of future taxpayer funded projects - is not set in stone. It’s just a list nobody who lives near the airport has seen, agreed with or are willing to trade for the expanded runway, more traffic on their streets and noise.

5. That Tweed, the city’s economic development team and frankly, Mayor Harp has made so little effort to get the neighbors most affected on board is a reflection of the city’s attitude that jams residents with debt, expense & higher taxes. Instead, the city and Tweed have made a concerted effort to garner political support - working with the Council of Governments made up of area politicians; state legislators from here and around the state and the city’s own BOA which avoiding the residents as much as possible.

6. With “visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads”, Tweed says airlines are salivating at a chance to expand into Tweed. This is based on nothing except conversations at conferences, much like a horny teen saying hi to his dream date in a school hall.

posted by: Patricia Kane on April 26, 2018  10:16am

Wow! The establishment can get the Legislature to pass a law to benefit Tweed but can’t eliminate Yale Corp’s anachronistic exemption while the City struggles to pay its bills?

posted by: jdossgollin on April 26, 2018  10:52am

“oing to Bradley is OK a couple times a year to visit family, but doesn’t cut it for business travel given distance and traffic issues.  Expanding rapid mass transit there in a meaningful way to fix that would cost $5 billion.”—anon

Care to clarify that? There is already a train station in New Haven and one in Windsor Locks, which is not far from Bradley. There has recently been some investment in the frequency and reliability of train service along the New Haven-Springfield corridor, though of course more needs to be done. A regular (every 5-10 minutes) bus (cheap) or air train/monorail (more expensive, but better) service from Windsor Locks train station to Bradley airport really doesn’t come close to 5 billion dollars (if it does, I’d love a piece of that contract!).

Again, making this work for New Haven depends on increasing the frequency and speed of train service on this corridor, which in turn will be a success only if there are good public transportation options in New Haven and Hartford once people get off the train, but since the rail already exists there’s absolutely no reason that we shouldn’t be able to guarantee people a 90-minute trip from the BDL arrivals to Union Station New Haven (State St would be even better but may take a bit more work.)

posted by: UrbanPlanner on April 26, 2018  11:21am

Here are the facts, lengthening the airport would:
-Improve safety for current flights, and give pilots more room to operate
-Reduce weather delays and cancellations which can ruin important business trips & trust
-Give planes ability to accelerate less, give more speed at take off, and enable quieter takeoffs
-Ability to attract more carriers, larger planes, better destinations
-Improve the desirability of New Haven as a place to work and live
-Improve the ability of business to operate in modern economy, increase jobs, increase competitiveness of new haven
-Capture $ that is otherwise spent in NYC or Providence on flights (50% of all people in region today)
-Turn Tweed from losing > 1 million of our tax dollars per year into a profitable operation

-Increased air traffic of 5-10%: 90% of the existing air traffic today (50-60 flights) is from private planes, which remains unchanged
-Increase car traffic of 5%: townsend ave has 10,000 cars today, even if every additional passenger drove their own car to tweed it would only add 500 cars
-Increase in noise: again, only 5% more planes, modern planes quieter, and 185 homes near airport are receiving $40,000 each in noise abatement improvements such as new windows, AC, insulation etc. 
-Limited parking: this needs to be addressed
-Increase pollution: this is actually false - larger modern planes are much more efficient
-Ruins wetlands: there is no study suggesting this, airport actually operates tidal gates protecting the neighborhood and wetlands and new pavement only increases by 5-10% 
-Immediate neighbors don’t trust the airport and hate the expansion: this has been handled poorly for decades, but this is at most 500 people who chose to live near existing airport in a region of 1.4 million that would benefit from expansion

In conclusion: is CT or New Haven is not in a luxurious economic situation. Both are broke. The cons are real, but minor when put in context (5%). Tweed must expand.

posted by: JCFremont on April 26, 2018  11:26am

I live in the area, I can see and hear planes approaching to land, I brought my house six years ago and expected the airport to expand, I supported the expansion before I moved, I support it now. I’ve flown out of Tweed often, very convenient when it works. Both sides exaggerate, New Haven’s economy doesn’t hinge on collapse if it Tweed doesn’t expand nor will the “unrestricted” clause turn the place into LAX nor will the East Shore turn into Atlantis. As far as traffic I can’t see it being much worse than Lighthouse Point traffic in July and August. All travelers will drive, yes some will Uber, The Universities, Hospital and Hotels can run vans and CT Transit might add riders if the flights take off and land during the bus hours. The Jets have begun flying in and out of Tweed and the noise is no different. Here’s another question, does the neighborhood want to keep the airport exactly as is? American Airlines I’m sure will leave eventually, or does anyone have any vision of what the area will become that won’t add traffic and population congestion and that “god forbid” make the city some money?

posted by: anonymous on April 26, 2018  11:32am

Jdoss: 90 minutes is way too far, and I think it’s unrealistic to think you could get even to that without a massive investment. $5 billion could get you a high speed direct connection, and perhaps bring the total travel time down to maybe 45 minutes to an hour.

According to Google maps, typical travel times at 1:30PM mid-week are as follows

10 min: Kendall Square to Logan

9 min: White House to DCA

24 min: Hell’s Kitchen (far West Side Manhattan) to LGA
18 min: Trump Tower to LGA
22 min: Wall Street to LGA
14 min: Williamsburg to LGA (28 min to JFK)

24 min: Pearl District to PDX

New Haven:
1 hour to BDL (under your suggestion of running a bus every 10 minutes, 90 minutes, which I think is unrealistic without a large investment so that the commuter trains also run every 10 minutes instead of once every 1-2 hours if you are lucky)

Where would you decide to plan a national event, choose to visit a possible investment or grantee, or locate a business?

posted by: Sean O'Brien on April 26, 2018  11:36am

@ NHv Indy editors - The caption on the Larson photo above should not contain the words “new neighborhood concessions”; he’s describing the old noise mitigation program + holding the map from 2012, which has not changed and will not change with the new jet service or expanded runway.

This is *mandated by the FAA*, not a gift, and part of the “good neighbor” effort that was supposed to follow the *2009 agreement*.

On the one hand, we’re supposed to dismiss this 2009 MOA + State legislation as “a decade old” and therefore outdated.

On the other, we’re supposed to be excited and happy that the work promised in that era will (mostly) be completed some time within the next 3-5 years.  That’s the foundation of the “new” community benefits “concession”.

And, of course, the Tweed Master Plan is from 2002.  But we’re supposed to keep following that roadmap here.

posted by: Esbey on April 26, 2018  12:09pm

How often do we see the leaders of New Haven business, large & small, come together with the leaders of labor and heads of our major city nonprofits and say: this is what we need to prosper? 

How lucky would we be if their proposal would be fully funded and require no tax money from the city or state?

How lucky would we be if their proposal required no taking of private land, no displacement at all?

How stupid would we be to say “no,” we don’t want prosperity.

How stupid would we be to say “don’t believe the unanimity of actual stakeholders who have business and wages and benefits and budgets and charitable funding on the line, instead believe anonymous internet commenters who declare it all a myth.”

We could be smart. We could do what they have done in the Research Triangle in NC, in Austin, TX and all over the country, which is to band together to make the choices that make a region prosper.

We could choose the future.

posted by: steve on April 26, 2018  1:23pm

Why is no one bringing up the other parts of the 2009 MOA? A limit of 6 airlines, a daily limit of 30 flights and a yearly limit of 180,000 passengers. All these parts can never happen with the present runway. Just to show how flawed the MOA is, if Tweed had 30 daily flights with 50 seat aircraft with the 180,000 limit, that works out to 17 passengers per flight and even with 15 daily flights, its 34 passengers per flight. The MOA was drawn up in error and not based on logic and common math. Airlines will not go for such an unworkable arrangement. The train to Bradley involves many stops along the way and lugging baggage to the train and from the train to Bradley,while Tweed is nearby and handy for those dropping off or picking up passengers, Bradley is not close,not handy and not feasible for passenger drop offs.If Bradley was in Middletown, this issue would not be coming up, but Bradley is almost in Massachusetts and being so it cannot be the sole commercial airport for the state.There is a greater population base at Tweed that would use it and eliminate the dependence on Bradley. Those in the Fairfield area are closer to the White Plains airport and those in the New London/Groton are area are closer to the Providence airport. The greater New Haven area constitutes a large enough market for Tweed to draw upon to be successful. The present flights to Philly are running at very high load factors with some flights sold out so the demand is here for more service.
If some are going to bring up the 2009 MOA, all of it has to be considered as it is one agreement.

posted by: Noteworthy on April 26, 2018  1:24pm


Your diatribe would be fine if it were true. Let’s just start with Research Triangle in NC - which I know well. That arena is so much larger than New Haven in both population, density, highways and quality universities. It’s far superior not to mention the predictable tax rates, quality of life, state and regional fiscal sanity and weather.

Who gives a damn what Yale and Yale New Haven Hospital want? They’re huge, they control gobs of money and have dictated a lot of policy that adds to their benefit far in excess of what it adds to ours. That is not a benchmark for why the city elites should support doing something adversely affecting a neighborhood.

In fact, Tweed’s proposal costs taxpayers money and lots of it. Even if another airline or two comes to Tweed - it will still demand taxpayer support. Not one “official” suggested anything but a constant drain on city resources. The claims of bringing prosperity to town is a joke.

If your major non-profits want Tweed to expand so much - tell them to start writing a fxxxxxg check to cover the taxpayer cost; write checks to cover all the debt we’ve accumulated. Then you got my ear. But don’t demand that taxpayers in our city,  98% of whom can’t afford to fly out of Tweed with its 25% or more premium, pay for their luxury and ruin the East Shore neighborhood as well.

posted by: Esbey on April 26, 2018  2:31pm

@Noteworthy, yeah, let’s talk facts.

The state bill under debate costs $00.00. I am all for your proposal that the cost of that legislation be passed onto local proponents of the expansion. Hell, I’ll pay the zero dollars myself, twice over.

If new air service requires a subsidy, which it may or may not, I will join you and demand that the subsidy be paid by Yale, business leaders and other direct beneficiaries.  But tell the truth: that is not the current debate. 

It is not just Yale, YNHH, etc. who claim this will increase economic activity. It is the leaders of the the large private large employers. What incentive do they have to lie and to put their political efforts on this issue if it won’t help them grow their business? Why is this *the issue* that they care about? Because better transportation connections are the actual key to business growth, and therefore to taxes and jobs.   
On the other hand, we know, for a fact, the incentives of homeowners near the airport to lie and protest and throw political dust into the air. If they achieve their long-term goal of shutting the airport down, each one of them books a capital gain on their house. This is the dollar incentive of NIMBYism: screw the region and make $$$ on your own private real estate.

Of course we won’t be the Research Triangle overnight, that’s black-and-white thinking. When they started, they were a sleepy southern backwater. If we get only a small percent of their success, that’s hundreds of badly needed jobs, while also setting the stage for future growth, onto thousands of jobs.

The many growing parts of the country succeed because they don’t give the NIMBY Naysayers veto power, they focus on removing the obstacles to growth.

posted by: Sean O'Brien on April 26, 2018  4:26pm

@Esbey Quite respectfully, you’re talking out of your butthole.  Go to a Tweed board meeting, as we do, and hear the numbers yourself from the people who run the airport.

This expansion is not free, and is one more step in the constant drain on New Haven and State taxpayer money.  The “community benefits” (which are either bogus such as the “solar program”, road changes for the planned expansion,  or a continuation of old programs that Tweed is legally required to finish) are all taxpayer-funded.

You want to paint us as greedy for not wanting our home values to *drop* and our quality of life to worsen?  I’d love to hear you speak to our alders, to make sure they’re more sympathetic to residents; we’re not rich barons living on our incredible real estate.  Quite the contrary; the neighborhood is filled with vacancies and foreclosures, as the NHv Indy has reported.

You’re just like the Greenspan-style growth enthusiasts who recognize we’re “losers” and try to tell the BOA why we don’t matter in the scheme of the “future” (we heard plenty of this last night).  It’s not going to help your case, it only strengthens ours by proving we’re being treated like unworthy trash and not “real New Haveners”.

Keep the line of over-privileged businessmen from outside the Elm City coming, I love to see your testimony.  Each time you open your mouths, it proves we’re on the right track.

You want your own private jets because Amtrak is not cool enough?  You pay for it.  Startups are not what this city is made of and we’re sick of being treated like luddites for protecting our lives and families.

posted by: JCFremont on April 26, 2018  5:08pm

@Esby and Noteworthy, I wonder if say a Industrial Park replaced the airport? Or maybe the state will build a prison there, that will really increase the price of the homes. Ever take a look at the homes that are on the direct flight path of LGA and Westchester? I don’t see 60 flights a day from Tweed but it needs to be more than a puddle jumper. People like to fly in the morning, they prefer non-stop flights but if not they would rather stop over in a region where the weather might be better and long enough to stretch out. Flying south and landing at Philadelphia would be like if your driving to Chicago and stopping overnight in Newburgh than driving the rest of the way. Sean the airports Master plan was from 2002 because that’s the speed Connecticut goes. How many decades has that Springfield New Haven rail line been sitting around?

posted by: RHeerema on April 26, 2018  5:43pm

Questions for New Haven taxpayers like me to ask:
•  Is the $25 million (for paving 1,000 feet runway) a loan or a grant? Is there a stipulation for repayment for funds if Tweed Airport closes?
•  Does the $25 million include the costs of the required EPA Environmental Impact Statement or Environmental Assessment? If not, how much would this cost and where will these funds come from? Will they be loans or grants or bonds at the city, state or federal level?
•  What is the total amount of money that the taxpayers are liable for if Tweed Airport closes? (Note: I am asking these questions because I have been told that Tweed must expand / is not currently viable / if Tweed closes taxpayers will be required to repay multi-million dollars in FAA grants. I don’t want to throw good money after bad due to “sunk costs” logic errors.)
•  Does the $300k-$400k for the roundabout on Burr Street and related traffic calming come from the city budget, capital budget, or will it be part of a city or state bonding package?
•  What is the projected annual budgetary impact of increased traffic impact on paving, repaving, and potholes?
•  Who will maintain the East Shore Greenway after the initial $2.4 million in state funds is spent? Are these funds committed? What is the projected annual budgetary impact of this maintenance?
•  What is the cost of operations of the proposed Airport Jobs Zone?

And the biggie, for me: When can we read an updated set of data and analsys of the 2000 economic impact analysis report that incorporates the completely re-structured airline industry and the changes in the New Haven econony?

posted by: steve on April 26, 2018  5:54pm

@ Noteworthy, “Even if another airline or two comes to Tweed - it will still demand taxpayer support.” Not true, American airlines gets no subsidy and any airline coming to Tweed would do so because they want to enter the market that American has all to themselves. Airlines monitor airports to make sure their interests are being covered, with AA’s good bookings, airlines are waiting to see when Tweed’s runway will be able to accommodate their planes. At present the nearest hub airport is Philly and other hubs are at least 400-500 miles farther than Philly, so Philly is all Tweed can have at present.
Quote “98% of whom can’t afford to fly out of Tweed” Again not true. Tweed’s fares are many times comparable to other airports as I always see average people flying out of Tweed, not the elite who fly private jets. When one factors the time saved in getting to far away airports, Tweed’s fares look good.
Quote ” tell them to start writing a fxxxxxg check to cover the taxpayer cost; write checks to cover all the debt we’ve accumulated.” Sad you feel that using hidden profanity makes you worthy of carrying on a discussion. Others who oppose Tweed have not descended to your level of crude ranting which must be part of your regular vocabulary. It needs to stop, present facts or listen and learn so your posts will not contain so many untrue statements.

posted by: robn on April 26, 2018  6:13pm

If having a big airport nearby is supposed to make a city better, then why does Hartford suck so much?

posted by: anonymous on April 26, 2018  8:17pm

robn, Hartford seems to be #2 in GDP per capita worldwide; New Haven isn’t on the top 10 list despite being surrounded by other metro areas in the top 10:

posted by: Bumbershoot on April 26, 2018  8:26pm

I live about two blocks from Tweed.  I knew it was an airport when I moved here, as did everyone else in the area.

If the opponents of expansion are correct that there really is no demand or economic gain to be had by expanding the runway they have nothing to worry about.  Nothing will change.

posted by: Noteworthy on April 26, 2018  8:45pm


1. I’ll use whatever language I choose and I do so with specific intent. It is very easy for Yale and YNHH to sit on the board, demand that taxpayers constantly fuel and fill and sacrifice in order to provide a benefit to them, their executives and customers. You are talking about millions and millions of dollars in taxpayer subsidy directly from the city budget and indirectly through the state and federal budgets. The most direct is painful for a city $2 billion in debt and hardly a dime in savings. I’ve been listening and learning about Tweed for 20 years and studying the city budget for nearly that long. I think I’m well qualified to comment.

2. In the last 60 days - I have checked the pricing for flights out of New Haven. This month, the rate to fly to Florida was $300 cheaper out of Newark; in June, the cheapest flight out of Tweed was $200 more expensive than Laguardia. If more than one person from a family is flying - double that. I don’t care how long it takes to get to the airport, that’s real money and worth the drive or train. There may be regular folks who fly Tweed but you have no idea where they live, who is paying the fare or anything about them. You’re going strictly on looks and luggage which is very deceiving. The average household income in New Haven is about $35 - $40K a year. We have rising poverty and dropping homeownership. The next largest group is families making less than $75K a year - after taxes and cost of living, you really think New Haveners are flooding Tweed? If you do, you know nothing about that class of family. You make the assumption that private air means private jets - wrong. Most of the traffic at Tweed is from private planes landing and taking off - jets or not.

3. The issue re: subsidy is not for the airline(s) - it’s for Tweed Airport Authority which doesn’t make enough money to pay its bills, or the ability to bond money by itself without getting direct taxpayer support and by using our credit card.

posted by: robn on April 26, 2018  9:27pm


Per capita income figures don’t really alter the suckiness of Hartford.

posted by: DEZ on April 26, 2018  9:31pm

This is such a fun subject. 2009 wasn’t a fluke. 2009 was a result of DECADES of NOTHING out of Tweed after Millions of dollars of life support. And after 2009? Millions more and zilch. Nada. Nothing burger. The promises of Tweed bringing new service to New Haven didn’t happen. Why do you think? American Airlines operating as PSA (just like Tweed) has airplanes flying non-stop to DCA from Westchester County airport right now, this very day. The plane, a Bombardier CRJ series could easily fly out of Tweed right now, this very hour, immediately. Why don’t you think American Airlines added routes at Tweed in this last decade? Why didn’t any other carrier who flies regional jets such as those at HPN come? Funny Huh? Cape Air flies out of HPN, why not Tweed? Surely if they thought there was a market they would be here, no? Is it bad management? The reason the airport authority, the city of New Haven and its elected officials at the state level, including then Senator Toni Harp signed that memorandum in 2009 limiting the runway by legislative action was because this was the last chance to give the mythical airline gods (that have NEVER PROMISED to come, and still have not) a chance to “maybe” revisit Tweed and grant a flashback to a few glory years in the 1990’s when we did have more robust air service. As a side note, Tweed isn’t just New Haven, honey’s. It’s East Haven too. And they had pending litigation in 2009 against New Haven that was dropped only after the memorandum was signed and legislated upon. I’m humbled that the city took the time to drag out THE SAME DOG AND PONY SHOW from DECADES of yore to assure us last night that, “No, NO! This time they will come! We’re sure of it! New Haven will FAIL as a city if they don’t.” *yawn* As the lovely gentlemen from the Corsair stated last night, (after a robust interjection during testimony) they sought New Haven and developed fully knowing that Tweed had 3 flights daily to PHL, and the Corsair is booming, no?

posted by: TheMadcap on April 26, 2018  11:18pm

“Westchester County”

A simple Google search reveals that the main runway at that airport is…....surprise! About a thousand feet longer than the current Tweed runway, and the plane series you mentioned requires only about 300ft less runwau than Tweed’s current 5,600ft which isn’t a high margin for error.

posted by: Noteworthy on April 27, 2018  2:03am

Perfect Example:

Flying HVN to Tampa 6.8. To 6.13. 2 adults. $449 each and 7.5 hours vs EWR leaving same time - 2.5 hrs and $196 each. Round trip. $898 v $392. Savings: $506. Yes, I’ll drive to Newark.

posted by: 1644 on April 27, 2018  6:24am

Noteworthy: Your cost comparisons between Tweed and the NY airports understate the additional time and cost of getting to them, or to Bradley.  I can literally leave my house 30 minutes before flight time at Tweed and still make the flight due to short lines, easy access/parking.  For a BDL flight, I need to allow at least two hours before departure, both for travel and for a NYC airport 3 hours.  For Tweed I can take a taxi for $20, or usually get my wife or a neighbor to drive me and drop me off.  For BDL, I need to drive myself, and pay for parking at $12-15/day.  For a NYC airport, I need to hire a car at $200-$300. Sure, I could drive myself, but then add the cost of the psychotherapy, anti-anxiety and antidepressant medications deeded to deal with Whitestone, Van Wyck,  etc. during any time but late, late at night or early Sunday am, plus tolls, gas, wear & tear on my car and parking.  Or the same aggravation for CT limo.  Bottom line for me is Tweed is well worth a premium price.

posted by: DEZ on April 27, 2018  7:25am

@ Madcap, no doubt HPN is larger and serviced by much larger planes as well, not to mention it’s ALSO serviced by a direct exit off of Interstate 684, is at elevation 380 ft, NOT 4 ft like Tweed, not sitting in the middle of a wetland, and not nestled cheek to jowl with both that wetland AND residential development, but I digress. Planes flying for American Airlines operating as PSA at HPN need LESS runway than the current American Airlines planes operating as PSA at Tweed. Check out the Wiki page on Tweed:

“American Eagle (PSA) is the only passenger airline currently serving New Haven. As of November 29, 2017, there were three daily round trips to and from Philadelphia on Canadair CRJ-200, Canadair CRJ-700 and occasionally Canadair CRJ-900 regional jets.”

Look into the specs of the planes currently used at both airports, it’s easy, pretend like you’re actually going to fly from either and click on the reservation…then google the plane. If it made financial sense to the airline in THE LAST 10 years, or the PREVIOUS 10 years from that, they’d be here already. Then, and ONLY then, you may have some sort of argument about expansion, as HPN is currently looking to expand, and you should see the stink that Greenwich, CT, Port Chester and Rye Brook, NY are putting up. Oh, and safety? You’re right, that’s why the safety zones were added THE LAST TIME! I’m actually amazed that ANY publication is even writing new articles based on Tweed? They could just re-run the same articles from 10 years and MILLIONS of dollars ago. It’s kind of like “fake news” in that it’s the same old unrequited love song. Maybe they should be publishing in

“Diminutive, lonely regional airport with bustling GA activity seeks airline, ANY airline, we’re not picky, we’re just looking for something with wings and an engine and fits at least 50 people. All replies will be answered… ”

posted by: Pardee on April 27, 2018  7:28am

steve:“The MOA was drawn up in error and not based on logic and common math.”  Well then, maybe it’s time to get rid of Larson. He was the driver behind this one. The airport has floundered, not flourished, under his leadership. He assured the neighborhood that paving the safety zones was all that was needed to bring more flights to Tweed and make the airport self sufficient. Well, that hasn’t happened, has it?* Tweed just keeps on sucking up City and State taxpayer dollars year after year.

To further erode the neighborhood’s trust, Larson SNEAKS in a request to overturn the MOA in a solar proposal that promised more lies. We learned that at Wednesday’s meeting. Any energy benefit to the neighbors is likely to arrive the same time as the mythical airlines. If the airlines are also annoyed with Larson after his years of begging them to come, there’s a good chance that they are paying him lip service so they do not have to listen to his “why you should come” speach over and over again. It’s been 9 years!

The community benefits package is a joke because the “community” was never consulted. We had to attend the meeting to learn the details. We knew as much beforehand as the folks from Branford, Guilford and Madison (WHO DON"T PAY NEW HAVEN TAXES!!) Just another example of poor leadership skills and decision making. Additionally, many of the benefits that were proposed are ones that we, the community, neither asked for nor wanted, and they are going to suck up more of our tax dollars. The noise attenuation program is FAA mandated NOT a benefit. The roundabout does not pass the cost vs benefit test. Solar energy benefit is not happening anytime soon. ETC. You get the drift.

Bottom line Sen Larson and Mr. Nemerson cannot be trusted.

The neighbors’ evidence based response is not NIMBY but based on hours, no years, of following airiport/airline trends thru research including MIT studies and business articles in prominent national publications.

posted by: steve on April 27, 2018  8:03am

@ DEZ Quote “American Airlines operating as PSA (just like Tweed) has airplanes flying non-stop to DCA from Westchester County airport right now, this very day. The plane, a Bombardier CRJ series could easily fly out of Tweed right now, this very hour, immediately. Why don’t you think American Airlines added routes at Tweed in this last decade?” 1. Westchester airport has a 6500 foot runway, Tweed 5600 & 5200 feet. 2.DCA airport is 303 miles away Philly 186 miles away and DCA is slot controlled meaning an available landing & takeoff slot has to be available for the flight. 3. Starting in June, flights to Philly will offer 48 seats, not the 50 the plane has due to warmer weather and weight restrictions. Flying to DCA would mean even less seats to offer.
So many statements with no verifiable facts, just rants made hoping they will convince others who think alike.
When one looks back over the years regarding airline flights at Tweed, one point stands out clearly, Eastern, United, Delta all had weight restricted flights that meant planes left with empty seats and passengers left behind.
As far as airlines promising to come to Tweed, what date can you give them as to when the runway will be upgraded? Anyone care to answer this question? Anyone? I’ve asked this many times before and no reply, why, because there is no date to offer.
Just because the CRJ can fly to Philly from Tweed does not mean it can fly to Charlotte or some other hub airport with a full passenger load and that has been Tweed’s problem for years but some cannot grasp that concept. To them a plane is a plane and if it can fly to one airport it should be able to fly to another airport with no problem. Do some research on this subject before making uninformed posts but then again some who make similar posts must like them because it makes them feel good. Whatever.

posted by: steve on April 27, 2018  8:27am

A Pardee Quote ” He assured the neighborhood that paving the safety zones was all that was needed to bring more flights to Tweed and make the airport self sufficient. Well, that hasn’t happened, has it?”
The safety zones or overruns are not paved, that is the current plan under discussion. Again the overruns are NOT paved as you say. Tweeds runway is 5600 feet in one direction and 5200 feet in the other. Airlines CANNOT operate off that runway to other hub airports such as Atlanta, Charlotte, Detroit, Chicago without incurring weight restrictions meaning a 50 seat plane might only be able to offer 40 seats at times and the remaining 10 passengers are left behind. This reality seems to escape those who hate Tweed, but they just keep making up stories as to why Tweed has not garnered more flights.
United tried for almost 5 years to maintain its Chicago service which led to Tweeds highest yearly boarding numbers but in the end, it was the weight restricted flights that caused United to leave. Same with Delta.
I will try to break this down as much as I can, same runway length, no new flights, more runway length, more new flights.

posted by: on April 27, 2018  8:50am

From the paperwork filed by the Office of the Mayor to the Board of Alders for the so called community benefits…..

Checklist for Aldermanic Submissions:

* “Fiscal Impact Statement - Should include comprehensive budget”:
Office of the Mayor response - NOT APPLICABLE

* “Supporting Documentation (if applicable)”:
Office of the Mayor response - NOT APPLICABLE

Why are these shenanigans allowed? The BOA isn’t voting on just the “spirit” of supporting the airport’s expansion, it’s voting to support construction that requires millions of dollars in taxpayer funds.

We’re in the middle of a budget crisis for the City and State.

posted by: BevHills730 on April 27, 2018  8:56am

It’s interesting to see the neighborhoods that Doyens advocates for and those he advocates against.

posted by: Pardee on April 27, 2018  3:31pm

@steve “The safety zones or overruns are not paved,”  My bad. You are correct. I should not post when I have a sinus headache. However, the point is the same. We were told that creating the overruns was THE thing that would make the airlines come. But, they haven’t At the management team meeting where the neighborhood accepted the paving plan, Larson was grilled over and over again promising the overruns would never be paved. Could never imagine a circumstance under which they would need paving. No, he was positive on that one. No, he would NEVER be back to ask that they be paved and the runway extended.

Larson got one part right. He never came back. Instead he and Harp & company snuck thru a “solar energy” bill with lengthening the runway tacked on the end. Hoping no one would notice, or notice too late to do anything about it.

I sat in on many board meetings when American first arrived. The Board was excited and hoped that American would add a flight to DC. They were further up in the queue for a slot in DC. They were in talks with American. But again, it did not happen. It is not happening because airlines are consolidating and pulling out of small town airports. One report on smaller airports that lost airlines listed Logan as such an airport.

You can build it and they will not come, but New Haven taxpayers will being paying for the effort and the shiny,  new expensive infrastructure for years to come. Meanwhile, Yale, YNHH, the suburbanites, the Chamber of Commerce members, etc. will walk away saying, “We thought it was a great idea” but not a penny poorer for their efforts.

posted by: steve on April 27, 2018  5:14pm

@ Pardee, Quote, “However, the point is the same. We were told that creating the overruns was THE thing that would make the airlines come.” Grass overruns which is what Tweed has cannot be used for normal operations such as being used to extend the take off distance and the landing roll out distance. Grass overruns are just for emergency’s such as an aircraft landing long and needing more ground to come to a stop or an aircraft that needs to abort a takeoff. 
Tweed was required by the FAA to have 1000 foot overruns at the end of both runways and if not, 1000 feet of usable runway would have been marked as overruns at both ends of the runway thereby reducing landing distance by 1000 feet at both ends. In the past, trees to the north had been allowed to grow and they effectively reduced the available distance for takeoffs on runway 2 to about 4700 feet at times depending on weather conditions and it was this shortcoming that caused Northwest to cancel plans for service to Detroit. Trees were cut but it still did not yield enough to allow takeoffs without weight restrictions at times. I say at times because weather patterns change constantly but airlines need runways that will allow takeoffs under most weather conditions and Tweed cannot offer that type of operational capability. As far as DCA, I said starting June, flights to Philly will be only allowed to sell 48 seats due to hotter weather which affects engine power output. DCA is farther than Philly so it is not doable. With the runway upgrade, United might offer flights to Dulles which is not slot controlled, but DCA slots are hard to come by as everybody wants DCA. No one has replied to my comment on the other parts of the MOA, such as a limit of 6 airlines and a daily limit of 30 flights. All some bring up is the runway length. The runway limit is adversely affecting the other parts of the MOA. In short, the MOA was flawed and when mistakes are made, they need to be corrected, nobody’s perfect, even us.

posted by: okaragozian1 on April 27, 2018  7:26pm

To grow, you need to expand and when you expand you increase activity; all types of activity, vehicular activity predominantly - including airline activity.

People who have moved to New Haven have not experienced this recent decade’s worth type of growth and are now reeling in both astonishment and disquiet.  Persons in search of bucolic and serene settings best head for parts hither to yonder.  I endear people to watch a short Twilight Zone episode called: A Stop at Willoughby Episode 30.  Although it has a macabre ending, the show itself signifies the tumult most people find themselves in whenever living in a modern society and in modern surroundings.

Unfortunately, growth is likely to continue and business will impose on neighborhoods so everyone should make plans and cash in while they can.  Specifically, the people who see the writing on the wall should have sold off their properties if they felt that they can’t live by the airport any more instead of trying to stop the airport expanding.  Now that the homeowners have said that living next to a busy airport is hell on earth, they have negatively impacted the value of their properties. The complaining homeowners will find that they have stuck their foot in their mouth and damaged the values of their own properties and the properties surrounding their properties.  If ever there was a classic example of a dumb move there can be no dumber move than to declare the worthlessness of your own property on record in public knowing that there may exist a likelihood that you may have to sell your property to maintain your sanity.

posted by: New Haven Taxpayer on April 27, 2018  8:12pm

@ Anonymous paving is “Do or Die for CT’s economy” -HA! New Haven is currently a boom town that other towns dream of -without flying wide body aircraft in and out of it.
Scare tactics don’t help, just more dishonesty from the pro airport side.

posted by: Brian V on April 27, 2018  9:37pm

The Airport and it’s supporters have been caught in numerous lies and untruths, I don’t think anyone can argue that at this point.
This time out they are claiming they “only” want 6000 paved feet of runway, yet their master plan still calls for over 7000 feet. So why should we believe they will stop at 6000? -Don’t believe it.
A 7000+ ft runway can accommodate very big, wide body planes. This is the REAL goal, wide body planes, but the airport isn’t saying that of course. Their plan is to nibble away to get to that 7000+ foot number. When they get there, they will get (maybe) their big planes and big numbers of flyers. Hundreds of cars will be traveling in and out of Morris Cove all day long. Our quiet neighborhood will be filled with the sound of wide body jets and cars of the travelers to fill them. I am sure this will KILL the value of my home.
The Mayor, Yale, Airport Employees and some entitled urban & suburban ‘start-ups’ are shoving this down a working class neighborhood’s throat.
Why should we bear the many, varied costs of a convenient big city amenity for them?
Certainly not for the “community benefits” joke they dropped on us Weds. night.
If the suburbs want it, if Yale wants it, if big business is dependent on it - let them pay for it? Stop feeding it with my tax dollars.
How about Yale opening up their home buyer program to the East Shore? That may start to offset the damage a big airport would have on the neighborhood?

posted by: Brian V on April 27, 2018  10:23pm


*Sound mitigation study did NOT project the effects of bigger planes, it was conducted with the current planes being used and current number of flights. Mr. Piscatelli seemed a little reluctant to truthfully answer the question posed to him the other night, that is the correct answer.

*Grass over runs are all they want (2009). -Until now, now they want 6000+ feet. Until they try and get to the 7000+foot mark, that’s what they really want -read it in their master plan.

* Give them this 6000+ feet and they will give you sound proofing on a small number of homes- oh thats right, they already promised that last time. Oh, ok now they will do it!?

* Airlines are dying to get here! -But NOT ONE letter of intent form any airline saying so?

* Community Benefits package is what was asked for! -Although zero input was requested or given; Queen Toni knows what’s best.

* Just give them this and they will become self-sufficient and won’t need tax dollar funding.    -Oh please.

* New Haven will shrivel and die without a bigger airport! -Then why are there so many people moving into New Haven, why the building boom, why so many ‘start-ups’? All w/o major air service within its borders now?

* New Haven is losing customers, businesses and valued employees to cities like New York and Boston because of inconvenient air travel. -Bull crap. We have 4 international airports within an 1 1/2 hour of New Haven, one 50 minutes away and 2 more within 2 1/2 hours. If you live in Manhattan or Boston it’s gonna take you an hour to get to an airport too.

posted by: steve on April 28, 2018  11:46am

@Brian V Quote,“This is the REAL goal, wide body planes, but the airport isn’t saying that of course.” Wrong, no wide bodies will ever be used at Tweed. Even Bradley only has a few wide body flights, most are regional and narrow body jets. Your knowledge of airports and airlines is lacking and it shows by your unsubstantiated claims meant to create fear in the locals.
Tweeds market is not one that can support wide body aircraft which by the way are mostly used for international flights. As far as the 6000 foot figure, that’s about what what will be the figure after the overruns are paved, for landing 6200 feet in one direction and 6100 feet in the other. Overruns cannot be used for touch downs by landing aircraft so the the figure is not 7000 feet for landing. Google runway overruns to learn about them and then you will be able to post factual information. Why did you buy a home near the airport? Tweed was there before you were and now you want the airport to go away when it is used by thousands every year and provides airport and airport related jobs. 
Quote,“Airlines are dying to get here! -But NOT ONE letter of intent form any airline saying so.” What date would you give an airline as to when the runway upgrade will be finished? When will the runway ready to receive an airlines regional jets? Airlines need to know if an airport can operationally be ready to start new service, so again, what date can you reliably give as to when the runway will be ready? We are all waiting.
Real easy to blurt out a statement without any research or forethought, but those statements don’t hold any water, just shooting from the hip, no facts, just empty meaningless words.
Please make up your mind, no airlines want to come to Tweed or “Hundreds of cars will be traveling in and out of Morris Cove all day long. Our quiet neighborhood will be filled with the sound of wide body jets and cars of the travelers to fill them.” You’r wrong on both counts.

posted by: Brian V on April 28, 2018  7:00pm

Oh Steve,

A letter of intent is so easy, its not a promise not a guarantee, just a letter of intent. Something like: if New Haven gets a big runway in the next 2ish years, “X” Airline intends to run 2 weekly flights to Chicago. -But they cant even get that. Not one.

I bought my home next to a small airport, using small planes. They have increased their foot print, re-routed a river and (effectively) increased runway length with those previously agreed upon grassy over-runs. Now they want to change the law and the previous agreement and I am opposed to that change for a number of good reasons. I don’t want them to go away, I just want them to live by the agreement the signed, only 9 years ago.

Why is the master plan’s Phase 4 at 7200 feet, Steve? Not for bigger planes? Why aren’t they talking about the REAL GOAL, phase 4? It is for bigger planes and you know it too.

As for what I believe; I don’t believe there is a market and the subsidies the airport gets is a big waste of my tax dollars, but if they get to their REAL GOAL of 7200 feet and big wide body aircraft, there just may be a market that will bring hundreds of cars through the hood all day long, maybe yes. And I want to stop that before it can happen, so I can keep some of the equity I have built up in my home over the years.
Thanks for reading!

posted by: zampano777 on April 28, 2018  9:18pm

There are some decent arguments on both sides of this debate, but I think we can all agree on the fact that the mayor has gone about it the wrong way. As someone pointed out at the alder hearing, it was Senator Harp who voted the MOA to settle the issue for New Haven and East Haven.

I am not hearing anything from East Haven, and I wonder why - I wonder if they even know what is going on. Transparency from Tweed and the mayor’s office has been lacking, at best. Residents were informed of the “benefits” at the meeting itself - and the benefits do nothing to reduce traffic volume through a residential neighborhood.
I don’t think the Tweed expansion will happen unless they relocate the entrance to East Haven, and dedicate some time to genuine urban planning - and most importantly, work with, not against, the residents of the Annex, Morris Cove, and East Haven.
My advice: scrap House Bill 5350. Apologize for trying to shove something through without local engagement. Hold real meetings that show the residents who moved here next to a SMALL, REGIONAL AIRPORT - and who may not mind a few more flights a day - that an agreement is binding and that the real plan is not to turn a great neighborhood into an annoying one because of airplane takeoffs and landings.
Nemerson and Larson, Development Office - do some more homework - look at other nearby regional airports, talk to them. Don’t insult us or we will resist you, as anyone would. We all want New Haven to succeed, but fairly. We already endure the waste water treatment plant and the power plant. We can work together for the future of New Haven, but not in this underhanded manner.

posted by: MarcoHaven on April 29, 2018  12:08am

The selfish nature of New Haven residents is again on display. Having a better city with an improved airport? No, the residents don’t like it. Adding a much needed hotel? No, the residents don’t like it. Having an empty building turned into a store? No, the residents want a Starbucks.

And it seems to be the “Protest Yale” class that always wants to wield its influence to make New Haven less of a place to live. We need a massive protest against the selfish.

posted by: steve on April 29, 2018  11:01am

@Brian, Quote,“They have increased their foot print, re-routed a river and (effectively) increased runway length. Not true, Tweed has 394 acres and its been that for decades. The runway has been since 1972 5600 feet in 1 direction and 5200 feet in the other. You keep making up stories with no facts. Quote “A letter of intent is so easy, its not a promise not a guarantee, just a letter of intent.” Airlines do not sign letters of intent, an airport either has the operational capability or not. Quote “As for what I believe; I don’t believe there is a market and the subsidies the airport gets is a big waste of my tax dollars.” There’s the focal point in your comments, “As for what I believe”, in your mind you think you have it all figured out, how airlines operate,wide body planes will come to Tweed, but only mention one part of the MOA, the runway, never mind the other parts of the agreement and all parts of the agreement need to be taken into consideration. But those other parts don’t count with you, just your own idea of what Tweed should be without any thought on the thousands who use Tweed every year and the jobs that go along with it.

posted by: JCFremont on April 30, 2018  9:40am

New Haven needs to expand. Having said that the airfares out of New Haven will not be cheaper than LaGuardia well neither are the fares out of Westchester people fly out of Westchester because on most cases it is more convienent. No middle or lower middle class families are going to find a group discount out of a smaller airport. So what, many families drive to mid range distances because it’s cheaper than either airfare or taking Amtrak (Plus it’s often takes driving less time). Who will use Tweed? Business or Academics going to Chicago or Washington DC, maybe the Carolina’s, these are the travelers airlines try to attract. Ever watch a commercial for the major airlines? All those luxuries? Your not getting that when you proudly book that $99 Round Trip to Orlando. Is it a risky “Investment”? Sure but we never hear about risk and failure with all that “Investment” in schools and social programs?

posted by: Brian V on April 30, 2018  11:57am

Oh Steve,

Why should anyone pay attention to any part of the MOA? The evil airport and it’s supporters are pooping on it right now. I don’t believe that they will agree to the empanelment cap or # of daily flights that they agreed to in it either - for good reason - they LIE. Larson will show up as soon as the tar is cool, tell us again that “things have changed” and we need to poop on the MOA again.

And as for the change in foot print…? YES they have increased their foot print -where were you when Dodge Ave and the river were re-routed? -Seriously?

And I ask one final time: Whats up with phase 4 and 7200 feet, if not for bigger (wide body) planes then WHAT?

posted by: UrbanPlanner on April 30, 2018  12:05pm

I just purchased a 1-way flight from San Francisco to New Haven for $137… the argument that tweed is expensive is not always true!! I also did a 1-way to LA recently for $150! I’d encourage everyone to check tweed for flights anytime they fly.

By the way, getting to NYC or even Bradley is not even close to free!!

Typically you will pay at least $50 in transportation each way, if you don’t drive and park yourself. If you do, there are still real costs there - owning a car, parking, gas, etc.

You will also spend at least an additional hour each way to Bradley, and for NYC it can easily be 4 hours each way! If you value your time at $0/hour that might be fine… for me, an extra 6-8 hours travel time and $110 round trip van cost to go to NYC is worth at least $200 higher price to use Tweed, and that is only valuing my time around $12/hour. 

Would you drive 50 miles to a gas station to save 0.25 cents per gallon on a fill up? If so, this argument is not for you.

If you are a reasonable person give Tweed a shot; it is frequently the cheapest option after factoring other real costs (about 30% in my experience). After factoring in time costs, it is usually the cheapest and most convenient option.

The best way to encourage Tweed’s expansion is to use the airport! It will let the airport and airlines know there is a demand. Fly Tweed!

posted by: anonymous on April 30, 2018  12:12pm

“If you live in Manhattan or Boston it’s gonna take you an hour to get to an airport too.”

Not exactly. From just about anywhere in Manhattan or northern Brooklyn where the startups and big companies are, it takes 20 minutes to get to LGA (25 now with the construction). From Kendall Square or downtown Boston, it is literally under 10 minutes to Logan. These are the facts, if you travel mid-day or at night.  NHV at one hour to BDL, and more than that if there’s traffic, just doesn’t compete- that’s a huge reason why so many meetings/conferences/events (even small ones), companies, and jobs stay away from here. 

Getting a couple more flights per day would actually reduce traffic at the airport, because you wouldn’t need to have so many people coming to New Haven in their private jets due to this inaccessibility issue.

posted by: Sean O'Brien on April 30, 2018  12:34pm

Predictably, ahead of the meeting tonight at 6pm at Jepson (and the meeting at Nathan Hale on Saturday May 5 at 9:30am we had to beg and lobby for), the comments about great hypothetical flights from Tweed are flooding in, like a bad advertisement campaign.

We have not been treated with fairly. Bike paths in New Haven are given tons of talk and meetings but our neighborhood will be completely redesigned overnight, without any community input until *after* the runway expansion is snuck into a solar bill that is FAKE. It will now be voted on at the State level no matter what happens at these New Haven meetings. Except, of course, if we can make enough noise to bring some attention to the abuse East Shore routinely faces from City Hall.

Why are we pissed? Have your local politicians ever treated you this way?

A roundabout that benefits Tweed primarily, and will be one small change required for the increased traffic, is now a “benefit” for the community. Finishing the FAA-mandated noise mitigation, based on bogus 2012 numbers that no longer apply, is a “benefit”. A parking lot for a few houses is a “benefit”. A solar plan we have no details about and legally can’t sign up for is a ” benefit”. And so on.

This is disgusting, and we should not be civil about it.

posted by: Esbey on April 30, 2018  1:27pm

Sean, serious question.

Do you

[a] want a respectful and full discussion of what benefits/mitigation would be appropriate for the east shore neighborhood in the face of a dozen extra regional jet flights a day?  That would include a mature recognition that the city & state would be spending money that wouldn’t have to be spent if the neighborhood was just rolled over and ignored, but the money would be spent in the spirit of fairness and solidarity. Or, do you

want to use this as a cudgel to prevent all improvements to air transport in the region, regardless of sincere mitigation, and eventually to shut the airport down so you can pocket the (quite possibly imaginary) benefit to your housing value?

If it is [a], then I think your position is quite reasonable and in fact you deserve a better response than you have been getting.  If it is , I think everyone else in the region should band together to try to roll over you politically, and forget any mitigation.

posted by: Patricia Kane on April 30, 2018  1:29pm

Sean: Personally, I’m tapped out subsidizing the Principality of Yale, aka the Yale Corp. and the YNHH.
      Subsidizing Tweed has also been part of my burden, but how many battles can we fight.
      The City and State are breaking their word to the neighborhood and that alone is reason for standing with you and in opposition to ANY changes at Tweed.
        I cannot imagine the rage and betrayal the people around the airport are feeling.
        As an aside, from Stamford to JFK was any where from 45 to 1.5 hours, depending on the traffic.
        Bradley is a clean, modern, easy drive. Tweed never even comes to mind when I travel.
        While most of the burden of this facility falls on your neighborhood and the taxpayers of New Haven, it is another kind of burden to be enjoying the Quinnipiac River and the abundant wild life, only to have the roar of a jet engine interrupt this idyllic scene. What price do we put on the loss of quiet enjoyment?

posted by: UrbanPlanner on April 30, 2018  1:34pm

@Sean O’Brien - what are you and some of your neighbors so worried about?

Flight traffic is going to increase 5-10% (3-6 new flights per day), as will automobile traffic ... you can hear those planes for about 30-60 seconds on each flight. That means the inconvenience, while real, is limited to 90-360 seconds of aircraft noise and all during reasonable waking hours.

This is not going to ruin your neighborhood. In fact, I honestly believe you wont even notice any change after it happens.

This is NOT an issue for the 100 homes to decide - it is a regional asset that pre-exists anyone who purchased a home in its proximity. It is unfortunate but all cities need airports, highways, sewage treatment plants, schools, hospitals, methadone clinics etc. What is the grave disruption in your life or to your neighborhood that makes you feel so entitled to “benefits”?

Morris cove neighborhood is great, it is quiet, safe, beach-front community… it is idyllic. Try complaining about all of your problems to someone that lives near the methadone clinic in the Hill… Do you deserve benefits more than they? Would this be such a big deal if the airport was in a poor or mostly minority community? Or do we need to dole out “benefits” anytime anything needs to happen in this city? Do you think this sense of entitlement has contributed to our financial crisis at the city and state level? Is this city or state in a financial position to cater to you or your idyllic, white neighborhood? 

This city, and this state should be doing everything it can to drive economic growth. What will Morris cove look like after all the jobs leave? You will be protesting city hall or tump or the governor to create jobs!

Rest assured, after this airport expansion, your home and community will still be idyllic, the sun will still rise, and maybe even more companies will come in - causing your property value to increase and taxes to decrease. Sorry for the 3 extra minutes of aircraft noise.

posted by: Sean O'Brien on April 30, 2018  2:43pm

@Patricia Kane, thanks for the support. You hit the nail on the head.

@Esbey “Do you want a respectful and full discussion of what benefits/mitigation would be appropriate for the east shore neighborhood in the face of a dozen extra regional jet flights a day?”

That’s not even what’s being offered, so this is a straw man.  More importantly, the airport has lost every battle to this point because others outside of the Tweed bubble understand how ridiculous their plans are, and how unlikely their far-fetched scenarios for success are.  So, instead, the City has snuck a one-liner into a fake solar bill that’s now in the CGA.  In the middle of a State and New Haven budget crisis.

We, as neighbors to the airport, have already been rolled over and these meetings are an attempt to pretend proper process has been followed, long after-the-fact.  An extremely weak attempt: there’s nothing to keep City Hall at its word, even if the community benefits were actual community benefits (which they are not).

We’re not holding the City “hostage”, as some have stated.  The situation is literally the opposite - we have no power beyond civil disobedience, and are now being corralled into fake “workshop” meetings to pretend we have been treated fairly.

I don’t want to give recommendations to Tweed and the City for the neighborhood; as East Haven Rep. Albis’s “solar idea” was perverted into a bill that expands the runway, so too will our ideas be twisted.

Would you negotiate with a dishonest broker in the same situation?

@UrbanPlanner don’t try to talk to the people being run over by a City plan that’s beyond their control as “entitled”.  It’s beyond insulting and nowhere near the truth.  In fact, it reveals your bald hubris for weighing in with such vitriol against ordinary homeowners.

posted by: UrbanPlanner on April 30, 2018  3:07pm

@Sean O’Brien - let me try again: what are you and some of your neighbors specifically so worried about?

If you could lay out what will actually go wrong for you and your neighborhood under the proposed expansion it would help us understand your perspective. It is unclear why you feel so strongly that 3-6 extra flights a day will damn and doom the neighborhood. Seems ok.

posted by: JCFremont on April 30, 2018  3:45pm

@Urbanplanner, I think Sean fears Tweeds expansion might actually succeed. Egads here in New Haven a success? Right now the noisiest flights taking off are a private jet and a sea plane. Could Tweed mirror Westchester? I don’t see it and I certainly don’t see any planes larger than regional jets. The future in air travel is not larger jets but planes that can get you to LA in an hour.

posted by: 1644 on April 30, 2018  6:12pm

Robn:  Yes, the city of Hartford sucks, because (a) it doesn’t have Yale, and (b) it is a welfare magnet that has punitive taxes for businesses.  The result is the vital center of the region has shifted to West Hartford.  Try finding a parking spot in West Hartford on a Friday night.

posted by: steve on April 30, 2018  7:16pm

@Sean, “The evil airport and it’s supporters are pooping on it right now. I don’t believe that they will agree to the enpanelment cap or # of daily flights that they agreed to.” In a past post I showed by simple math the yearly cap on passengers is not commensurate with the 30 daily flights. I don’t have any problem with the 30 daily flights as I estimate Tweed can have between 12-20 daily flights. Quote,” Whats up with phase 4 and 7200 feet, if not for bigger (wide body) planes then WHAT?” Phase 4 has been dropped and if Bradley and White Plains do not get wide bodies,why would Tweed? The current plan would be ample to allow airlines to offer service beyond Philly. Only large airports have wide body service such as JFK,Boston,Philly etc,not small airports and that where the regional jets come as they were made for small to medium airports that seat 50-90. Quote ” And as for the change in foot print? YES they have increased their foot print -where were you when Dodge Ave and the river were re-routed?” The road was not closed but rerouted to allow the overrun. Rerouted is no big deal unless someone makes it one. I keep explaining that the current plan will the final runway project, Tweed will never have international flights,even Bradley has only 1 international flight and for those flights, JFK and Boston are the best for the states residents. At present, 737s,757s,A319’s,MD-80’s can all land at Tweed but they cannot takeoff with full or near full loads and that is what has kept airlines from offering new service, the runway plan will remove those impediments. My including those planes do not mean I see those offering service to Tweed, for the most part service will be by 50-90 seat regional jets as they fit Tweeds market. Some say airlines don’t want to come to Tweed and then say the airport will be busy all day with many flights. Which is it? Too many inaccurate statements causing fear. An improved Tweed will benefit thousands of area travelers.

posted by: Sean O'Brien on May 1, 2018  2:45am

@steve I don’t know who you’re quoting but it’s not me.

We were just at a community “workshop” by the Mayor’s office where the primary presentation was a new roundabout at the corner of Dodge and Burr, explained calmly and in detail by Doug Hausladen and co. This would be fine, if the intersection needed it, which it only seems to if the airport sees much-increased traffic. So, this is a Tweed benefit being passed off as a boon to the community, paid for by all New Haven taxpayers during a budget *crisis*. No one in the East Shore is asking for this.

It’s exactly this type of approach that angers neighbors, and is also why we don’t believe Tweed expansion will stop at 6600 feet, just as plans have not stopped at 5600. Tweed has powerful political allies and, in the end, always gets what it wants.

Residents who stand up to this are, predictably, shouted at and mocked. All the while, this faux-solar bill keeps moving through the CGA, rushed before the end of session (and the impact of the budget crisis is tangibly felt), without officials even pretending the bill is about anything than removing all runway length restrictions on Tweed.

As for the MOA, a skeptical mind might think the high numbers of flights in it are the end goal, and the only limitation (5600 feet) that truly caps it was never intended to be permanent by the City, airport, and other politicians involved (then-Senator Harp). Only a few years after the MOA was signed, the campaign to remove the runway restriction was started.

Pointing out that this restriction will now be removed doesn’t help the case for Tweed’s honesty when dealing with New Haven residents. But, y’know, we should take Tweed and City Hall’s promises at face value now.

posted by: Ryn111 on May 1, 2018  11:02am

Do the bold letters suggest everyone is yelling?

You bought a home near an airport. I am sorry you didn’t think about this further.

posted by: steve on May 1, 2018  1:07pm

@ DEZ, Quote, “HPN is at elevation 380 ft, NOT 4 ft like Tweed.” Again venturing into a subject you are not well versed in. The closer to sea level is best for airliners as the air is more dense and jet engines provide maximum power at sea level. Airports at high elevation have need for longer runways due to planes not being as efficient as when operating at lower altitudes.

posted by: steve on May 1, 2018  1:45pm

@ Sean O’Brien Quote,” we don’t believe Tweed expansion will stop at 6600 feet.” And makes you believe that? Who are the “we” you refer to? Do the “we” have any knowledge of airports and airlines? What would be the advantage of a runway longer than White Plains airport? Its already been proven that regional jets can only fly to Philly being the closest hub airport with the present 5600 & 5200 foot runway and even then, Philly flights are still subject to weight restrictions. As far as phase 4 of the master plan, that has been dropped. Back in the 70’s, Tweeds master plan had a 60,000 sq.foot terminal listed, it never happened. Master plans are just that, a list of what might be regarding the airport with nothing written in stone and these plans are drawn up by consulting firms trying to forecast what might be needed decades from now. The present plan to pave the overruns will result in an airport able to offer service to hub airport beyond Philly, such as Charlotte, Atlanta, Chicago, etc. Again, what would be gained by going beyond the present plan and why do you feel this way? Tweed will never have international service as that type of service is best served by JFK. Wide body planes are not in Tweed’s future.
Just having feelings about a subject does not in any way mean its based on reality and with some of the comments I have read, they don’t reflect a working knowledge of the subject but are just that, personal feelings.  An improved Tweed will mostly eliminate relying on Bradley and make travel less of a hassle. 
The time has come to be reasonable and realize the airport is not going away and many more are in favor of more service than opposed.

posted by: steve on May 1, 2018  3:09pm

@ Ryn111, I did not post in bold characters and I hope no one thinks I am yelling.

posted by: Sean O'Brien on May 1, 2018  3:24pm

@steve I think *we’ve* been pretty clear. I feel solidarity with my neighbors, many of whom have been fighting this fight longer than I’ve been alive. 2009 was supposed to be the end of all that, and the people of the Cove and East Haven had, in good faith, allowed the rerouting of Dodge etc. under that pretense. If New Haven’s officials and ED office wanted different terms in the MOA, it should have been part of the negotiating process back then.

I suspect that the driving force behind this is the ED office that came later, notably Mr. Nemerson who preferred to skulk around the “workshop” meeting last night rather than have frank and honest discussions with residents (as many alders did). His presence wasn’t even announced while his deputy did a roll call of the officials in the room.

I use “we” to recognize that there are many New Haveners in opposition to this absurd insult, sneaking a one-liner into a solar bill that will not benefit residents (by design, not being an “energy supplier” we can legally choose under CT law).

You seem rather incensed at the suggestion we have a movement and community of activists. Worried the winds are shifting on this issue, perhaps? More to come, stay tuned.

posted by: robn on May 1, 2018  3:34pm

I don’t live in the cove but I think the immediate neighbors should be respected and their sentiments about their own well being should not be trivialized by describing them as selfish or hurting the rest of the city. Yes they moved next door to an airport…an airport that’s not busy and that has has legislation limiting its expansion. Its reasonable for them to not want more disturbance.

posted by: Patricia Kane on May 1, 2018  3:47pm

Although I do not live near the airport, I stand with Sean O’Brien and his wife, their neighbor Barbara Scanley and all the other people who oppose dropping the restrictions on Tweed, which would break the initial promise made by the City to the neighborhood.
    A deal is a deal. Unless someone decides otherwise.
  Of the 2200 people who live near the airport, about 20 actually learned of the hearing before the Board of Alders or about the scheduled workshops. The workshops do not allow for the people to speak directly to city officials to express their opposition. That is why I joined Sean O’Brien and other people in walking out and instead speaking to those Alders who were there and who listened respectfully to many thoughtful concerns.
  How is it the City notifies me of parking changes and weather alerts, but can’t notify people in the area where a major change is being proposed that will affect their quality of life?
    Why is there no law requiring notice and due process when a contract with a neighborhood is unilaterally being changed?

posted by: steve on May 1, 2018  5:46pm

@ Sean O’Brien, Quote, ” allowed the rerouting of Dodge ave.” What was the hardship imposed by the rerouting? Did it inflict harm on the neighbors? That is a non issue.Please read my other post as to why the 2009 MOA is flawed. It was intended to increase airline flights but the deck was stacked against Tweed.Take the daily limit of 30 flights and the 180,000 yearly limit on passengers, that works out to 17 passengers per flight, or at 15 daily flights,that’s 34 passenger per flight. Totally unworkable.  From a simple math standpoint, it does not fly. It can’t work as described and the runway has been 5600 & 5200 feet for decades. As far as the we, there are many more people who want more flights and in the past, the NHI surveys showed an overwhelming support for the airport and thousands who every year use the airport vote with their wallets. Did people really think Tweed would stay frozen in time? I am hoping for some forward movement so the airport can offer more service to meet the needs of the market and end the dependence on Bradley.

posted by: zampano777 on May 1, 2018  7:44pm

I think Robn and Patricia just posted the best, most level-headed, reasonable remarks on this thread in the last few days.
I live in the Annex, and I feel betrayed by Mayor Harp’s actions - and I think one of the most interesting questions a reporter sleuth might go after, is the question: who authored HB 5350 and HB 5537? Was it an individual, a committee, a group from New Haven’s City Hall? I’d like to know. I’d also like to know who is on the Committee that votes on it, and when they vote.

That said, I am an open-minded person and I am willing to be persuaded by a good argument, or shown that I am wrong. For instance, I assumed that adding 600 cars a day to Townsend Ave. would be a total disaster. The city engineer, Giovanni Zinn, and Doug Hausladen, head of TT&P made good presentations on their work relating to the traffic increases, which would in fact be pretty minor, might come in a few surges, even at that level. I still think the approach to the airport should not be from Townsend anyhow, - but from the East Haven side - but at least they did traffic studies and showed that they were wiling to redesign Townsend and Main, and make other traffic flow improvements to our neighborhood - whether the airport expansion happens or not - which was a good outcome of the “workshop.” They are for the expansion, but they have done their homework on traffic, drainage, and flooding, and made good points.
IF an expansion of 5-6 new commercial flights a day would add some huge economic benefit to New Haven, AND lower our taxes, AND if our Annex and Cove areas were given some true benefits/offsets - like $20/month electric bills run off the solar at Tweed, I think we’d be more open to the changes proposed - if they would not at all substantially change our neighborhoods - an open question on a few fronts still.
What we do need is to learn to listen - even if we have been disrespected and mistreated by the mayor in this affair. My advice to her: apologize and start over.

posted by: DEZ on May 1, 2018  9:22pm

I can’t even stomach the comments, but really? Lol, @ Steve…

” That is a non issue.Please read my other post as to why the 2009 MOA is flawed. It was intended to increase airline flights but the deck was stacked against Tweed.”

The deck was…STACKED AGAINST TWEED? Honey lamb…the deck WAS Tweed! And the airlines…never…came…and you, dear petal, can’t explain why. That’s why nobody trusts anything coming out of either city hall OR the old tower at Tweed. Remember, we were promised increased air service THE LAST TIME! One (won) and done…then came the tumbleweeds on runway 20. Same old unrequited love song, same old empty hanger.

Please…reach out to the players of the 2009 MOA…I’ll wait…talk to those that crafted it first hand. You obviously are trying to rewrite history, or are Tim Larson, or maybe both. Frankly, I think all the news outlets would do better to re-run the articles they wrote in 2009. Same story, different decade. Save time going to print. But still, our quiet, sleepy field persists…may I suggest running Tweed like Waterbury-Oxford airport? Now THERE’S an airport that runs in the black, to the tune of >400K dollars/yr! Maybe y’all can take a page out of THEIR play book?

Oh, and what are we going to do about runway 32? It’s closed. Robinson Aviation is pretty pissed and they seem to be the only business at Tweed (other than the airport authorities attorney) actually MAKING money! Evan Warren wrote a decent testimony about weather conditions that favor runway 32 (with data, you know, facts) and the shady (well, that’s MY word) way in which 32 got shuttered. Of course, Tweed blames the community…Ya, that was us making the big flashing “X” on 32…alas!

posted by: steve on May 1, 2018  9:36pm

@ compassionateconservative, I appreciate your post as being open minded and willing consider and learn some the issues that the airport and neighborhood are facing. I remember when United had flights to Chicago and yearly boarding’s were well over 130,000 and there were no traffic problems, I was not at that meeting but I can see where some small changes in the traffic patterns can be modified such as making some streets one way to ease traffic for better flow. Airline flights do not all occur during just one portion of the day but from early AM to early PM meaning that traffic will be manageable. Tweeds growth after the runway project will be measured as new airlines survey the airport and work out which airports they will serve. I would expect Tweed’s only airline American to first add service to their Charlotte hub which would open more and new connections to the South. 
The economic benefit would be keeping more of the travelers money in the local area, more airport and airport related jobs, increasing the airports income and making the area more attractive to companies looking to relocate or existing companies to expand. I also see the East Haven industrial park becoming a more busy place. I have done quite a bit traveling by air and have seen that small city airports that have good air service have attracted businesses nearby. 
If both Delta and United started service at Tweed, it would by 50-70 seat regional jets, which by the way are quieter than the Dash-8 prop planes that flew to Tweed last year.This type of service would not drastically change the complexion of the local area as some have stated, but for years Tweed has been very limited to the service it offers and now some feel any change would be disastrous for the area and that is not true. Some posts were made that were entirely not true and meant to cause fear such as wide body jets coming to Tweed. Never going to happen.

posted by: steve on May 2, 2018  11:37am

@dez, quote, “And the airlines…never…came.” Now I ask you, why did the airlines not come? Take some time to think about the answer. Why did American airlines come to Tweed? American has a hub airport Philly less than 200 miles away and yet some of the flights are weight restricted meaning the flights depart with empty seats. Why is that? If you reread some of my posts you might finally understand the reason. Delta has hubs in Detroit and Atlanta, both about 600 miles from Tweed. United has a hub in Chicago about 900 miles from Tweed. Are you starting to see a pattern here? The regional jets like those that fly to Philly cannot fly to these other hub airports due to the limited runway. The weight restrictions on those flights would be great and airlines cannot operate profitability with this type of operation.
Quote, “you, dear petal, can’t explain why.” I did explain why as noted above but to you any plane should be able to use Tweed’s runway to fly to any hub airport. Today airlines need load factors in the 80-90 % range to make money and that cannot be done at Tweed to airports other than Philly. Again, other airlines have hub airports that are beyond Tweed’s range with its present runway so they cannot start service from Tweed. I don’t know how I can explain it any better.
As far as who crafted the 2009 MOA, it does not matter because its not working, a mistake is still a mistake no matter who made it. Mistakes need to be corrected, pointing fingers as to who did this or wrote that are meaningless. Until the runway is upgraded, no new flights can be offered, plain & simple. Tweeds runway will not permit flights beyond Philly
As for as the Waterbury-Oxford airport, they have no airline service and they have many biz jets using the airport and those are the type of planes that are louder than the regional jets.
Lastly the deck stacked against Tweed was the 2009 MOA, no matter who wrote, its flawed, it cannot work, its deficient, lacking desired results. Get it?

posted by: John Bodnar on May 2, 2018  7:09pm

This plan would create jobs.

posted by: RHeerema on May 2, 2018  8:12pm

The Tweed Master Plan was published in 1999; 19 years ago. The related Economic Impact Analysis was published in 2002; 16 years ago. There have been many economic changes to the city, region, state and airline industry that should be incorporated into a new plan and new economic forecasting. What projections may still be accurate?

posted by: steve on May 2, 2018  10:38pm

@RHeerema, Some of the changes in the airline industry have been several major airline mergers and since the master plan was written, also there has been a large increase in regional jets in the fleets of the major airlines that has resulted in more service to some smaller cities that previously had mainline planes with over 100 seats. The regional jets have 50-90 seats and that has matched the markets better by having higher load factors. With American Airlines jet service to Philly, the planes have very high load factors and some are sold out. Tweed’s boarding totals for 2018 should be much higher than 2017 when service was provided by the prop Dash-8.
The demand for air travel has climbed over the years with low cost carriers fueling the growth and the major airlines are matching the fares on many routes. Its been estimated Tweed has passenger leakage to other airports in the range of 85%. Much of that leakage is caused by Tweed only having one airline and is missing out on frequent flyer passengers who fly solely on Delta, United, Southwest, etc.
Another reason for the leakage is that with one airline, passengers on cancelled flights cannot be re-booked on another airline, no options exist at Tweed for re-booking passengers.
When Tweed is compared with other small city airports, it has the lowest number of flights and yet it has a large market. Cities like Roanoke, Va, Charlottesville, Va, Gainsville,Fl, Charleston,Sc, etc,have smaller metro populations, yet have multiple airlines with service to several hub airports.
New Haven is under served compared to other cities and those other cities have runways that permit airlines to operate without weight restrictions, a long standing problem at Tweed. Only Philly can be reached by regional jets and even then, in June outbound flights will be restricted to 48 seats, not 50.
Its been this way since 1972 with runway 2 being 5600 feet and runway 20 being 5200 feet.
The runway is the key for more flights.