Airport Expansion Hearing

The Federal Aviation Administration wants to know what Houstonians think of the city's plans to expand Bush Intercontinental Airport, on top of the expansions done in recent years. Jim Bell explains.

More expansion at Bush airport is so far in the future the FAA hasn't even done the Environmental Impact Study that's required before new projects can be approved.  FAA officials will begin that process this week with two public meetings — in Houston — to get input on the scope of the issues the EIS will have to cover when it's done.  FAA spokesman Roland Herwig says they want to hear from anyone with an interest in the projects.

"We collect information from the public, hopefully the Tuesday and Thursday session will have a lot of public people, but also from all of the other industries and public entities that are involved in the process."

Some people who live near Bush airport are worried that the City will buy their property through eminent domain in the middle of a recession to make room for more airport expansion.  Herwig says that step is still years away.

"This is a very early stage. We're in the first quarter of the process. What people can do, listeners can go to a website, and look at the definitions of what this is all about. It will explain the process."

for more information, visit the George Bush Intercontinental Airport web site. The first public meeting will be held tonight (May 12th) at 6pm in the Humble Civic Center on Will Clayton Parkway in Humble.  The second meeting will be held Thursday, May 14th at 6pm at Nimitz High School on W.W Thorne Drive. 

Jim Bell, KUHF, Houston Public Radio News.