FAA Endorses O’Hare Plan


It looks like the FAA is going to approve Chicago Mayor Richard Daley’s controversial plan to expand O’Hare International Airport (and pave over a couple of small towns and a pioneer cemetery). The FAA formally endorsed the $15 billion to $20 billion project as the most viable way to relieve the chokepoint in Chicago, which often wreaks havoc on airline schedules throughout the country. Final approval is expected in September and Daley says work will begin immediately after that. When complete, in 2013, O’Hare will have six parallel and two intersecting runways, a new terminal, parking for “oversize” aircraft (like the A380?) and more jet bridges. Most important, however, is the expected impact on O’Hare’s terrible on-time record, the worst in the country. All this is cold comfort to the 2,600 people who will lose their homes, the 200 businesses that will have to relocate and the families of 1,300 of the dearly departed who will also be shifting digs (sorry). Local community governments and activists vow to fight the expansion to the end, saying there are alternatives to the mass destruction.