Sunday, February 05, 2006

Toronto Island Airport and Meigs Field

A lot of the anti-TCCA bloggers and those who comment on them remind us (approvingly) of Chicago Mayor Richard Daley's closure of that city's airport, Meigs Field. (Meigs can still be seen on Google Maps - hat tip to Information Echo).

It's worth reminding ourselves of some of the history around that closure. Daley moved in the middle of the night with bulldozers to make the main runway unusable with no notice to the Federal Aviation Administration, the small fine this offence attracted causing the FAA to increase it ten-fold for future offences. Sixteen aircraft had to be given permission to depart from the taxiway, hardly normal or safe practice!

An investigation appears to be be still pending (no sign of resolution on faa.gov) regarding Daley's use of funds from O'Hare International to demolish Meigs. The reconstruction of Northerly Island is being funded by granting a concert stage to Clear Channel - the kind of corporate media giant that would surely chill the Friends of Miller. Daley's actions brought reactions from the local major newspapers, such as the Sun-Times:
"without any advance notice or public discussion, the city vandalized its lakefront jewel, Meigs Field."
and the Tribune:
"the issue is Daley's increasingly authoritarian style that brooks no disagreements, legal challenges, negotiations, compromise or any of that messy give-and-take normally associated with democratic government."
It's hard to believe that Daley, all because of his legacy obsession with the waterfront, is the kind of Mayor people want Miller to be? Is this the Canadian way?

Since I started this post, I notice Information Echo has posted again on this - worth a look I think.
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