I’m not sure Joseph Bates (“Santa Monica Airport an asset,” Letter to the Editor, March 24) really is in touch with the residents living here on the Westside (Santa Monica, Mar Vista, Venice). His “facts” are untrue and he seems to spin the issue in his foggy reality; this is not “a minority of residents,” but many who want the airport closed!

The airport is a health and safety risk to many people who live here.

Not the few.

We do not want the airport operating as it is now.

The increase in huge, unsafe jets, the constant roar and fumes from these aircraft does not fit into what the airport was designed for.

The city of Santa Monica loses money and is costing the tax payers tons of money ever year. I repeat, the airport does not make money.

We living here want the airport to be closed and a park built for the many to use. Not the rich few who use it as their playground at the expense of those living around it. Most of the pilots are not from around here and do not contribute to the well-being of others. These pilots continually skew the facts, scared that their precious pastime is at stake.

We living here love aviation, we just don’t love the gunslinger pilots that feel they have the right to change the facts to fit their own personal interests at the expense of others. Namely people that actually live here and pay taxes, breath the toxic fumes and can’t hear conversations due to the onslaught of jets taking off every 30 minutes above our heads.

Here is what the majority of residents want:

The airport closed and a new great park built that serves all of the community. We want the land to be used for people actually living here.

Giving children and the elderly a place to walk and play and feel a part of this great area. Make new friends, exercise, enjoy the outdoors free of toxic fumes and loud jets (both are detrimental to one’s well-being)

The park will have sports fields, an amphitheater, community gardens, walking trails, bike paths. It can hold concerts, birthday parties, education seminars, yoga classes.

It is time to join the many other urban cities that have realized how important open space and community is to those living in a big city.

And just to cover the emergency safety issues, a landing strip (runway) will be preserved to insure safety just in case we need to use the airport for disaster relief.

I see a whole new era happening for the green city of Santa Monica. The time is now to move ahead with changes that will be serving generations to come.

I’m all for the airport closing and hope the City Council listens to its people who want change and fresh air to breath.


Valerie Davidson

Mar Vista, Calif.

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