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With ARC in limbo, a hazy future for Stewart Airport

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While speaking at a House Committee hearing on transportation and infrastructure last week, Mayor Michael Bloomberg warned of an impending crisis in the northeast. “The Northeast is approaching a transportation crisis,” the mayor said. “Our airports are among the most clogged, our highways are among the most congested, and our train corridor is the most heavily used in the country. And all of that is just going to get worse, as the region’s population is expected to grow by 40% by 2050.”

 

On the heels of that committee meeting, the Regional Plan Association issued a report on the state of our airports. The tale they tell is not a new one; we’ve known for years that the metropolitan area’s three major airports are well above capacity. Yet, the numbers they throw out — a need for an additional 78 peak-hour flights per day — are staggering. The need to expand is one that could have dire economic consequences.

 

“The crucial link between air travel and economic prosperity is threatened by a lack of adequate capacity in our aviation system. We need to start planning now for future growth,” Robert Yaro, president of the RPA, said. “The cost of building airport capacity, while significant, must be weighed against the even greater toll on the region’s economy if we do nothing.”

 

Enter Stewart Airport. Located just 60 miles outside of Manhattan, Stewart has been the go-to airport for saving the region from air congestion for as long as I can remember, and the plans to use it have never made much sense. In 2007, the MTA announced a study to explore a rail link between Manhattan and Stewart. For $600 million, the authority would have provided a 90-minute ride to the tiny airport, and I long believed this to be a waste of money. Stewart is just too far away and adds too much time to a trip to be as popular as it must be to alleviate the pressure at Laguardia, JFK and Newark.

As ARC hit the ground running, though, it seemed as though Stewart would be eligible for a rail link via the new tunnel, but now that ARC is dead, so too seems Stewart Airport’s future. The RPA study doesn’t believe Stewart is a viable fourth airport, and they believe the Port Authority is overplaying the importance of its upstate property which is on pace to draw only 400,000 passengers this year.

 

Read more: http://secondavenuesagas.com/2011/01/31/with-arc-in-limbo-a-hazy-future-for-stewart-airport

 

My comments: IMO sending more passenger flights to Stewart is not the solution. They should redirect all Kennedy freight flights somewhere else, freeing up capacity at JFK.

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But where would they redirect JFK flights too? And I agree Stewart is not the answer. Who wants to travel 60 miles to and from the city? Hell, I dont even like the idea of having to go to Newark. When I fly, I need LaGuardia or Kennedy.

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But where would they redirect JFK flights too? And I agree Stewart is not the answer. Who wants to travel 60 miles to and from the city? Hell, I dont even like the idea of having to go to Newark. When I fly, I need LaGuardia or Kennedy.

 

LaGuardia hands down for me. JFK has better options, but it's too far from where I live.

 

As for the future of Stewart: It is a better alternative for northern New York/New Jersey residents, but there's really no way to duplicate JFK. Having said that, Stewart is the only airport where you can actually expand without a major disruption to the surrounding area. JFK is surrounded by either water or residence, EWR's recent plan for a new runway involves the destruction of a new terminal, and The Port Authority does not want to confound the problem at LaGuardia (and I am of the opinion that if they could close it without causing an uproar, they'd do it in a heartbeat). As bad of an idea Stewart is, it's really the only viable idea for increasing air capacity.

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LaGuardia hands down for me. JFK has better options, but it's too far from where I live.

 

As for the future of Stewart: It is a better alternative for northern New York/New Jersey residents, but there's really no way to duplicate JFK. Having said that, Stewart is the only airport where you can actually expand without a major disruption to the surrounding area. JFK is surrounded by either water or residence, EWR's recent plan for a new runway involves the destruction of a new terminal, and The Port Authority does not want to confound the problem at LaGuardia (and I am of the opinion that if they could close it without causing an uproar, they'd do it in a heartbeat). As bad of an idea Stewart is, it's really the only viable idea for increasing air capacity.

 

True.

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But where would they redirect JFK flights too?

For example, they could redirect all JFK freight flights to Stewart and have a rail connection. Unlike the alternative for using Stewart as a passenger airport, the connection does not have to be HSR.

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LaGuardia hands down for me. JFK has better options, but it's too far from where I live.

 

As for the future of Stewart: It is a better alternative for northern New York/New Jersey residents, but there's really no way to duplicate JFK. Having said that, Stewart is the only airport where you can actually expand without a major disruption to the surrounding area. JFK is surrounded by either water or residence, EWR's recent plan for a new runway involves the destruction of a new terminal, and The Port Authority does not want to confound the problem at LaGuardia (and I am of the opinion that if they could close it without causing an uproar, they'd do it in a heartbeat). As bad of an idea Stewart is, it's really the only viable idea for increasing air capacity.

 

Could not say it any better as a current Hudson Valley resident. At best Stewart could be similar to MacArthur and serve residents from Northern Westchester, Orange, Putnam, Dutchess, Ulster in NY, Pike/Wayne Counties in Pa and the Danbury area of CT.

 

I still say just bulid a 'airtrain' type connection between the Harriman Pt Jervis line and Stewart and call it a day.

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What about White Plains Airport?

 

Aint happening. The three people that live in the surrounding area don't want to see it expand, and in its current form there's no space.

 

Could not say it any better as a current Hudson Valley resident. At best Stewart could be similar to MacArthur and serve residents from Northern Westchester, Orange, Putnam, Dutchess, Ulster in NY, Pike/Wayne Counties in Pa and the Danbury area of CT.

 

I still say just bulid a 'airtrain' type connection between the Harriman Pt Jervis line and Stewart and call it a day.

 

DMU service would suffice. Just find the cheapest row possible and connect it to the Port Jervis Branch.

Edited by Nova RTS 9147
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For example, they could redirect all JFK freight flights to Stewart and have a rail connection. Unlike the alternative for using Stewart as a passenger airport, the connection does not have to be HSR.

 

Can Stewart handle 747's?

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There are 3 plans that could affect this situation. One, the tappan zee bridge, could have rail involved. Two, the PA wants to see if a 3rd runway at KEWR will work, three, stewart was to have its runways lengthened and improved to handle pretty much everything aside from the A380.

 

The new EWR runway would be capable of handling the A380, as well as other big big jets, and they would modify part of terminal B to accommodate any big jets into the future.

 

Stewart rail link is an obvious no-brainer. While this is being hashed out, i suggest sending some regional and domestic flights to long island macarthur, and providing bus link service to LIRR.

 

- A

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Stewart would be a great airport like Islip has been for Long Island residents. Both should be expanded and marketed for a suburban alternative to the city airports.

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