O’Hare Wars

While the mayor was celebrating the opening of a new runway at O’Hare and fending off questions about the opposition of six airlines to his airport expansion program, foes of the plan ran a full-page ad in the Daily Herald. I had trouble wrestling the entire image into this post, so I’ll just provide you with the text.

DALEY’S O’HARE “MODERNIZATION” BOON or BOONDOGGLE?

Chicago has made many unchallenged public relations claims about Mayor Daley’s much ballyhooed “O’Hare Modernization Program” or “OMP”. But when one looks at the details it is quickly apparent that the public relations claims are mostly “hot air”.

The Aviation Benefit Claims are Bogus!

* The infamous “Western Access” – a one hour bus ride around the airport. Chicago admits that passengers with baggage, who use American Airlines and who park in the western parking lot, will face a one hour bus ride around the airport to get to the American terminal. Same goes for United passengers with baggage who land at Terminal 1. Imagine: $15-20 billion of your money for a Rube Goldberg design that eats up an additional hour of your time! That’s “modernization”?

* The 45 minute taxi ride from the Northern Runway to the United Terminal. Because Daley’s massive plan fails to fix a critical taxiway choke point on the northern side of the main terminal complex, FAA controllers anticipate major taxi delays in good weather (let alone bad weather) from the northern runway to the United terminal complex.

* Minor Delay reduction rapidly disappears. FAA’s own studies show that the new runway will not provide any significant long term delay relief.

The Airlines can’t afford Daley’s Boondoggle – They have refused to pay for it and would spiral into new bankruptcies (costing thousands of jobs) if forced to pay the massive cost

* Hidden from public view is the raging dispute between Daley and the O’Hare based airlines (American and United) over how to pay for the $15 billion balance of the $15-20 billion program.

* The airlines cannot afford to pay the huge costs of the expansion and have refused to sign on for either the multi-billion dollar balance of “Phase 1” of Daley’s boondoggle or any of the massive “Phase 2” – all of which would cost the airlines (and their passengers) billions of dollars that they can ill afford.

* Daley’s “pie-in-the sky” idea – borrow the money and by-pass United and American with massive debt (build now-pay years later) that will create huge costs for airlines using O’Hare, making the O’Hare airlines (and O’Hare) far less competitive (and cost thousands of local jobs).

Bad Economics matched by Environmental and Religious Destruction

* Lost in Daley’s over-hyped and flawed economic claims are the destructive consequences of Daley’s actions.

* Chicago plans to destroy a large portion of a Bensenville residential community and parks for land Chicago will likely never use.

* Chicago will destroy a sacred religious cemetery – violating the religious principles and beliefs of a church which established the cemetery in 1849 – when the cemetery could be saved by simply moving a runway 300 feet.

What’s In it for Daley and His Cronies – O’Hare is the “Candy Store for Corruption”

* If Daley’s massive O’Hare expansion is a “fool’s errand” – which makes no sense from an aviation or financial perspective why is Daley pursuing it?

* Simple. The massive cash flow from O’Hare construction and operations is used to support an army of campaign workers and campaign contributors – including relatives and cronies.

“President-Elect Obama – please don’t funnel taxpayer billions for more Chicago corruption.”

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