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Opinion, Letters To The Editor, Santa Monica, Santa Monica Airport

Letter To The Editor: Why I'm In Favor Of Keeping Santa Monica Airport

Posted Apr. 14, 2014, 9:20 am

Letter To The Editor

Dear Editor,

Susan Cloke ended her most recent column with “What Say You?”

I’ve lived right under the takeoff path (just west of Lincoln) for over 33 years. There are certainly many moments when the sound of the planes is incredibly annoying, although I find the jets far less annoying than the propeller craft, largely because they’re out of the way in seconds, rather than s-t-r-u-g-g-l-i-n-g flatulently along for what seems like an eternity, like the propeller ones.

But I am in favor of keeping the airport.  

The airport is interesting; it’s fascinating to visit, and to show off to out-of-town visitors.

Aircraft of all kinds, frequently classic craft, fly over.  Given the hundreds of thousands of over flights I’ve experienced, I know of just one that produced a mishap of any sort, which cannot be said of Lincoln Boulevard, right next to my house.

So many complaints come from people who moved in, presumably knowing the airport was there, and then began to whine about the noise, risks, smells, much like people who moved into Venice by Ocean Front Walk and promptly set about to gentrify the area.

The airport is certainly not an unmixed blessing, and most the time I was just settling into a lovely stretch in some music on my stereo when a streak of six or so planes began grinding along overhead – if I had a button right then that would erase the airport, it would be long gone. But soon, all is forgiven.

What I really want to know is why in the world is the airport abbreviated “SMO” instead of “SMA”, (or called “Santa Monica Oirport”)?

Bob Burket

Ozone Street, Santa Monica

Post a comment


Apr. 14, 2014, 10:32:37 am

Jeffrey Manning said...

Bob, Thank you for sharing your opinion. I live on Marine and I've been a pilot for 35 years. I'm biased but I enjoy the sights and sounds. I also see/hear lots of LAX arrivals, transiting aircraft, banner towers, police and tour copters and military. All of them have nothing to do with SMO but I wonder how many people blame SMO because they aren't informed? As for pollution, I've been breathing jet and low lead avgas fumes for decades and so have millions of flyers. My lungs are fine and cancer free. I also breathe LA smog and exhaust when stuck in traffic. That's a constant daily risk none of us can get away from. I guess I just accept that risk because I live in a big city. To answer your question: SMA might be too similar to SNA which is John Wayne in Santa Ana.

Apr. 14, 2014, 11:52:37 am

Brian Banner said...

Get rid of the jets and I'd have no problem with the airport. But if the jets are gonna stay the airport's gotta go.

Apr. 14, 2014, 12:13:58 pm

Martin Rubin said...

SMO are the assigned call letters for Santa Monica Airport as are LAX the call letters for Los Angeles International Airport. Pilots often refer to SMO as KSMO. As for pollution impacts to the downwind communities; they are real, the are huge, and they are a public health issue.

Apr. 14, 2014, 1:12:28 pm

Donald said...

I feel that it is time for the airport to go as it no longer serves the vast majority of Santa Monica residents. This land would better serve the needs of our community as much needed playing fields and a clean healthy park that would be available to everyone and not just a few.

Apr. 14, 2014, 1:21:01 pm

Patrick Toomey said...

I grew up directly under the flight path on the west side of SMO (70-90's). My family still lives there and we are all airport supporters. Yes, there are times that the scream of jet or drone of a helicopter can be annoying or interrupt a tv show or music. I've called a couple times for noise and a rep from the airport called back to let me know that yes, those two flights exceeded the decibel limit and the pilot would be notified. But for the vast amount of time I enjoy having the airport as a neighbor. I have seen my neighborhood become filled with intolerant NIMBY's. People who have flooded in, torn town homes and built 3 level monstrosities that take up nearly every inch of property and then complain about the noise., the car traffic, the fumes. My response to those who want the airport gone - be careful what you wish for! You honestly think the city of SM will allow a park there? Money drives everything and the powers that be will NEVER allow that to happen. Just remember this when you are sitting in endless lines of traffic in a city that was not designed for 50,000+ inbound car trip daily. That number of car trip will skyrocket should you get your wish. I support the pilots and the uniqueness that is Santa Monica and SMO!

Apr. 14, 2014, 1:29:53 pm

Kerry said...

Too many huge and loud jets. Jets go then SMO can stay. Get rid of these horrible jets! Keep the cute small airport.

Apr. 14, 2014, 3:05:48 pm

Robert (Bob) Smith said...

Brian Banner and Donald, don't have touch with reality. The cost of "Decontaminating" the area would run into the tens if not hundred's of Millions of $$$. I believe that a law should be passed, saying that "If it was an existing business/operation before you moved there, or were born in the area, that you must accept it as having Priority over your own personal Selfish Needs" some Councils in Australia have laws of such type in place, to stop the WHINGING IDIOTS.

Apr. 14, 2014, 4:45:30 pm

Rerry Jubin said...

Let's put it to a vote then. Let the people of Santa Monica decide without the special interests on either side. Right now it's an Airport Holocaust perpetuated by the fascist regime that is the current Santa Monica city council. Propaganda is being spread by faithful anti-airport soldiers. The patriots and lovers of democracy must act swiftly to insure a fair vote on this matter. Otherwise we will have succumbed to the fascists masquerading as concerned citizens.

Apr. 14, 2014, 10:06:26 pm

Donald said...

Bob Smith you are the one spreading fear and misinformation just to keep this land for YOUR own selfish use. Just about every park in the country these days are repurposed from previous industrial uses such as airports, train yards, landfills and industrial wastelands. They do _NOT_ cost hundreds of millions of dollars to remediate. That is simply a lie. Even the MOST polluted of them, Crissy Field, Warren G. Magnuson Park Seattle, Gas Works Park, Seattle, Stapleton Airport, Floyd Bennett Field, NY Fresh Kills Park, Cesar Chavez Park, Cornfields State Park, Los Angeles Wetland Park, Boston Millennium Park, and Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park just to name a few have ALL been cleaned up and economically converted to transform an environmental negative into a healthy positive benefit for all of the community to enjoy and use.

Apr. 15, 2014, 7:59:49 am

All about me said...

It's unfortunate the pilots have to spread fear and BS about SMO. Many cities have closed small airports and built community parks at minimal cost. I don't trust the Pilots Association or the pilots! They storm troop every web site, city council meeting and newspaper de sparely trying to "spin their selfish past time". I bet they even try to buy off the election if one comes about. This is concerned residents against deep pocket big money pilots! And the FAA. The residents are ready for a Great Park! Close SMO

Apr. 15, 2014, 10:59:14 am

You deserve each other said...

This is straight out of the GOP playbook. Be the bully but then when the other side fights back pretend to be the victim. Well you can't be both. I don't care about the airport. It can be a parking lot, a mall or a toxic waste dump for all I care. But I can assure you that the hatred and selfishness I have seen from my neighbors over this has made me hope for the worst possible outcome - whatever that is. You've made enemies of your fellow citizens and the damage won't soon be undone. You've pissed off neutral parties like me who won't support either cause. I will vote in favor of closing the airport but only if they promise to sell it to the most aggressive builder and use imminent domain to put a freeway spur right through the middle of Sunset Park.

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