SANTA MONICA—On Tuesday, March 14, Congressman Ralph Lee Abraham (R-Louisiana) wrote to federal officials asking for clarification on the recently approved agreement to close the Santa Monica Airport (SMO) in 2028.
Rep. Ralph Lee Abraham wrote the letter to Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao and Michael Huerta, administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and asked for a response by April 4.
In his letter, Abraham states, “From my perspective, this agreement departs from the long-standing principle that the federal government will preserve airport infrastructure and hold airport sponsors accountable, especially when they have accepted federal money and committed to deed-based obligations to operate the airport in perpetuity.”
The agreement, announced in January, allows the city of Santa Monica to close the airport in 2028 and to shorten the runway from 4,973 feet to 3,500 feet. The city recently hired AECOM and Aeroplex to begin reduction of the runway and is expected to be completed later this year.
Santa Monica has begun planning toward the airport closure, as it looks to expand the existing Airport Park, a four-acre park adjacent to SMO. Based on a notice of preparation, the city will redevelop 12 acres of land to feature two regulation-size soccer fields among the new recreational amenities.
A public forum to further discuss plans will be held from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Tuesday, March 21. The meeting will be held at Santa Monica College’s Bundy Campus, Room 239.