I am only a recent subscriber to General Aviation News, and read your article about the long-coming problems with airport development (Capital Comments: Today’s problems have been decades in the making, May 5 issue). But one point I take some issue with is your statement that “no major airport has been built in the United States in the last 20 years.”
We have the Mid-America Airport about four miles south of our community and within the city limits of Mascoutah another four miles southward. I know it’s no Lambert, or Logan, or O’Hare, but it does have a 10,000 foot runway and occasionally has 747s stop by, especially to pack off the National Guard for duty in Iraq. We have had three or four airlines in here, including Pan Am, which failed for the effort. I think an airline is currently flying from here to Vegas and to Orlando, but, to be sure, the place is largely vacant. It was a political plum all along. Nobody wanted it except the politicians. Personally, as an advocate of aviation, I thought it was a pretty good idea, except for how they treated the people previously living there, whom they just tossed out like dead mice and took over their property without making adequate payment — except for those who retained politically-connected attorneys, and those made out like bandits, literally!
So, I just didn’t know whether you thought this joint-use venture in connection with Scott Air Force Base somehow didn’t qualify, or what, but it looks to us like a mighty fine facility, if only someone would use it!