Via the city of Santa Monica.

At its meeting on Tuesday, February 28, 2017, the Santa Monica City Council approved a contract to begin the design phase of work to shorten the runway at Santa Monica Airport to 3,500 feet. Designs will include both an interim and long-term option. Shortening the runway will limit jet traffic at the airport and reduce the health and environmental impacts in the neighboring community until 2028.

“Even if years from now our litigation strategy eventually won out, until then the status quo of jet traffic at the airport would have remained and might even have gotten worse,” said Mayor Ted Winterer. “The Consent Decree allows us to shorten the runway this year. Once that happens, we should soon see a big drop off in jet traffic.”

The proposed Feasibility/Design-Build Agreement has three phases.

  1. The initial feasibility phase, which will provide alternatives for Council consideration and future selection, and allow for compliance with applicable environmental review requirements, depending upon which alternative is selected. Phase one consists of this feasibility analysis for design alternatives.
  2. Preconstruction services including all design work necessary to develop a Guaranteed Maximum Price (GMP).
  3. Construction phase based upon the scope of work covered by the GMP.

At Tuesday’s meeting, Council also unanimously adopted a resolution reaffirming its commitment to close Santa Monica Airport to aviation uses after December 31, 2028 under the terms of the Consent Decree with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). The Consent Decree was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California on February 1, 2017, settling a longstanding dispute between the City of Santa Monica and the FAA over the closure of Santa Monica Airport.

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The adopted resolution includes three key measures:

  • Directs the City Manager, City Attorney and their staffs to take all actions necessary and proper to ensure that SMO will cease to operate as an airport and shall be closed to all aeronautical use forever effective as of midnight onDecember 31, 2028.
  • Directs the City Manager not to enter into any agreements with the FAA, or any other party, that may have the effect of requiring the City to continue to operate SMO after December 31, 2028.
  • Directs the City Manager to ensure that the City provides 30-day prior notice to the FAA of the City’s intent to initiate shortening of SMO’s runway to an operational length of 3,500 feet at the earliest feasible opportunity.

“The Consent Decree is clear in our right to close the airport after December 31, 2028, but we took this additional step in adopting a resolution to give our residents an even greater degree of assurance that the airport will close to aviation uses forever,” said Mayor Winterer.

For more information, visit smgov.net/airport.