The fight for Seattle to get a second airport up north has been dragging on longer than many have expected. For those of you who do not live in the Seattle area, Allegiant and Horizon Airlines started to look into the possibility of flying out of Paine Field, which is located in Everett, WA. Talking to Horizon, Allegiant, Boeing and the airport recently, they all say there are currently no updates for the addition of commercial flights.
There are a lot of positives about adding commerical flights to Paine Field, but there are a lot of people who are fighting hard to “save our community”. Wait, what?
Since 1992 a group, called Save Our Community, has come together and tried to stop commerical aviation at Paine Field. Their main goal is to preserve, “the quality of life in this primarily residential area of Puget Sound.”
Now, I feel they do have a few good points. If the traffic at Paine Field is increased, this could cause issues for Boeing and possibly make them look to move their main factory to other parts of the country. Of course, no one would want that to happen.
However, I don’t think allowing commercial flights would cause Boeing to leave and there is surely a happy medium that could be reached. Adding commercial flights at Paine Field would create many new jobs in the Everett area with the need for additional hotels, increase in tourism and the hiring of airline workers.
Personally, I think the arguement that the quality of life for everyone around the airport would deteriate is just hogwash. During public forums in the Everett, WA area back in January 2010, many people felt that the Paine Field area would become dirty, filled with porn and crime, forcing people to leave. Many complained that they bought homes around an airport and are upset about the idea of increased flights. For me, many people seemed to be quite selfish about the matter.
I live in the flight path of Paine Field and bought my house fully well knowing that. Sure, I am a bit different since I actually enjoy aircraft flying over my house, but people shouldn’t assume to buy a house around a very large airport and not expect planes to fly over. People have complained that adding MD-80 and Q400 flights would be a huge nuisance, which is odd, since we already have Boeing 747′s and even the Dreamlifter, which are much bigger and louder, flying overhead. Not to mention the Boeing 737s that fly in all the time to get maintenance work done. Would adding a few smaller planes really make our lives that much worse? I feel the possibility of commercial flights coming out of Paine Field should be driven by market demand and not private citizens fearful for the value of their homes.
The Save Our Community website states that people who run Paine Field, “are going all out to declare war against the community by working to bring in air service to Paine Field.” Really? War? If people in the community come together and create a demand for air travel in and out of Paine Field, why shouldn’t airlines meet that demand? No airline is going to start flights to a new destination without expecting to make profit. It is not like airport and airline officials are getting together just to make your life worse. In fact, starting commercial traffic to Paine Field will make more people’s lives better.
Competition is a beautiful thing. If airlines are able to fly out of Paine Field, it will cause competition for Seattle-Tacoma International Airport down south and for Bellingham International Airport up north. This means that not only will the airlines be competing for your business, but so will the airports.
Yes, some people will have to make some sacrifices, but we have to look at the greater good for our community. Could my house value drop if there is an increase of flights. Sure. Am I willing for that to happen for the greater good of the community — of course. What do you think? Would adding commercial flights at an airport that normally doesn’t have them, but could handle them be a good or bad thing?