Committee looks at secondary airport study

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Atlanta does not appear ready for a secondary airport, based on information given to a citizens review group looking into adding passenger service to Briscoe Field.

But the relevancy of the data was questioned, since a proposal would create a small destination at the Lawrenceville field.

"It's going to be, what kind of demand you have in the area?" task force member Mary Jane Kelley Pollizzoto said of the main point of her presentation, which included information from a recent Hartsfield study that ruled out the Gwinnett County Airport as a potential reliever. "I don't know how much traffic you are going to pull away from the original airport."

Pollizzoto also reported analysis from Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor Richard de Neufville, who said Atlanta's large amount of transfer traffic creates a unique situation with less than 15 million people originating or departing from the world's busiest airport.

"I'm still not sold that there is that kind of demand here," the group's chairman Tip Cape said.

But Jimmy Norton, a leader in the Fly Gwinnett Forward group interested in pursuing passenger service as an economic development tool, said he did not see the relevance of the report to the current situation.

Whereas the Hartsfield study called for two parallel 9,000-foot runways, Briscoe Field is half that size.

"There is plenty of airspace out there, and there are plenty of ways to make this work," Norton said.

While one company, Propeller Airports, has submitted a proposal to privatize the county airport, the proposal is currently being evaluated and has not been released to the public. The exact plans are not known.

Local resident Roy Rogers said he was disappointed the report did not give information on the area surrounding the secondary airports.

During a recent dinner with his wife on the rooftop at McCray's in downtown Lawrenceville, Rogers measured the decibel level of a jet taking off from the airport at 105 decibels.

"This will kill downtown Lawrenceville, no doubt in my mind it will," he said.

Leroy Garcia agreed. "I grew up near an airprot and the quality of life sucked," he said. "I want to live a nice quiet life, when I'm away from work."


notblind 3 years, 6 months ago

Lee Gilmer Memorial in Gainesville is the only existing northern airport that makes even a little sense for a regional hub. I have read the current FAA report and it basically says, in the whole country, there is no successful airport like they want to make Briscoe into.

None of this will make any difference to the Fly Gwinnett Forward people so we have to remain vigilant against their misinformation and subterfuge.


SabrinaWorks247 3 years, 6 months ago

Would someone from Fly Gwinnett Forward please answer the following questions?

  1. Do you agree with Brett Smith that commercial service at Briscoe will generate 20,000 direct and indirect jobs?
  2. Despite the fact that the FAA has provided written statements that the taxpayers of Gwinnett County WILL be required to continue to operate a commercial airport in the event of Propeller's bankruptcy, do you still claim that there is no risk to the taxpayers?
  3. If there are no health or noise issues, why did the CEO of Gwinnett Medical ask for a no-fly zone over the hospital?
  4. Do you still claim that soundproofing required in homes near the airport would be “home improvements”?
  5. On your website, you discussed policies and procedures that could be implemented to reduce the number of people exposed to “unacceptable noise levels.” What do you consider an acceptable number of people to be exposed to “unacceptable noise levels”?
  6. What kind of outdoor soundproofing is available for patios, playgrounds and schoolyards?

Dubbin 3 years, 6 months ago

This airport is simply another money grab like the Braves stadium. The people who do the construction work will make a pile of money then ride into the sunset while the residents and taxpayers are stuck footing the bill and dealing with the pollution, noise and even greater gridlock on 316. Boondoggle. Name it the Charles Bannister Corruption Jetport.


BevL 3 years, 6 months ago

With the information given in Mary Jane Kelley Pollizzoto's report, the odds for success of a commercial airport at Briscoe Field seem extremely low . Why should this even be considered, considering the adverse affects on the city of Lawrenceville, Dacula, and surrounding areas? Low chance of success with very real damage to quality of life and property values. Whatever the outcome there is one guarantee - a lot of very angry voters..


Cleanupguy 3 years, 6 months ago

I can only partially agree with BevL – a very inconsequential few angry voters, likely not very many. Recall that a 10% voter turnout put Bannister back in office, a whopping 5% turned out for Nash, and voters kept on serially re-electing Kenerly right up through his indictment (you know, even while he was taking bribes from the developer that we all saw him on in the Las Vegas video). The stadium? No problem – we’ll let a Chamber of Commerce person that helped to put the deal together sit as co-foreperson of the grand jury investigating it. We’re massively apathetic in Gwinnett, and continue handing the keys to the kingdom over to more of the same, while continuing to gripe about the results. Sadder still is that voter disinterest is counted on by most of the candidates – it effectively lowers the cost of obtaining the offices they aspire to. My point is that the problem here begins with us.


bcdmad 3 years, 6 months ago

My family and I enjoy the downtown Lawrenceville area and near by parks, many of which are currently undergoing, or have just been improved. Imagine watching soccer games at Rabbit Hill, Football games at Dacula High School, or baseball games at Dacula Park - all the while listening to jets take off and land at Briscoe Field - instead of listening to the laughter of kids and parents having a good time. Families are the heartbeat of this county but will be looking towards Barrow, Hall, and Jackson should our quality of life (and property values) decline here because of these airport issues. I don't believe that there is voter disinterest. I simply believe that everyone is leaving the job up to their neighbor and don't realize how important their vote really is. Our job to make sure they know they are needed. Again, and again, and again, and again.


micronmike 3 years, 6 months ago

You can already hear them now. No need to imagine. It would become a constant, rather than once an hour or so for large/loud aircraft.


Cleanupguy 3 years, 6 months ago

Call it what you will - disinterest or involvement avoidance, but the numbers tell the tale. It's actually much worse than depicted - we're only at about 60% of those eligible that have even bothered to register in the first place. Therefore adjust the above to 6% showing up during the Bannister run and 3% for Nash - that's absolutely pitiful at best. Still don't believe me? Volunteer for poll worker duty and get back to me on this.


kayak 3 years, 6 months ago

These movers and shakers behind the airport expansion, including the Fly Gwinnett Forward dinks, think nothing of forcing us to forgo what little investment value we may have left, or hope to some day see develop, in our home values - which already have suffered a huge hit due to the national economy. We can kiss home values goodbye forever if that airport gets built the way the commercialization people want it built. So their profit on their investment is realized directly on the backs of those of us who bought our properties over the last 25 years near a small, quaint county airport. I am the first to vote to get the gvnmt. out of private industry but the only way to make this deal attractive to a commmercial interest is to guarantee its profitability - one way or another - including taxpayer bailout upon failure. Airport success = more and bigger airplanes flying overhead. Unless they propose gambling or some other form of profit, how else are they gonna make money except the airplanes none of us want flying over our investments?


WantingFacts 3 years, 6 months ago

I would like to know how other readers feel about economic development near their own home.

Which would you rather have built near your neighborhood:

a.) Apartments b.) A Commercial Airport


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