WARWICK – The city of Warwick opposes the Federal Aviation Administration’s preferred alternative for runway expansion at T.F Green Airport.
In a statement prepared for a public hearing on the project held last night, Mayor Scott Avedisian and Warwick planning officials said the FAA’s preliminary selection ignores the city’s concerns about “flawed findings predicated on … 2004 forecasts and assumptions of service and fleet mix that are no longer valid.”
Avedisian said FAA officials want Warwick to “accept, without limit or argument, a project that would adversely affect the city, presenting unacceptable noise, air quality, socioeconomic and environmental justice issues.”
The FAA on May 26 gave preliminary support to the Rhode Island Airport Corporation’s preferred plan to extend the main runway southward and shift a shorter crosswind runway. The plan would require the FAA to acquire 11 homes and 10 businesses, with the potential to take up to 201 more homes if owners approve.
“This is the preferred alternative because it’s the least intrusive,” Patti Goldstein, spokeswoman for RIAC, told Providence Business News.
Officials estimate that the runway repairs and property acquisitions would cost about $170 million, with 75 percent of the cost picked up by the FAA and the rest covered by RIAC revenue. The total cost, including related private expansion efforts, is projected to top $400 million.
The FAA is expected to release its draft environmental impact statement on the plan early next year and a final decision in approximately one year.