SANTA MONICA, Calif. (FOX 11/ CNS) - Santa Monica City officials and the Federal Aviation Administration announced Saturday an agreement to close the Santa Monica Airport on Dec. 31, 2028 and return 227 acres of aviation land to the city for eventual redevelopment.
The agreement ends a longstanding legal battle over the future of the airport.
The deal also provides for the immediate reduction of the airport's lone runway from 4,973 feet to 3,500 feet, reducing jet traffic and commercial charters.
``Mutual cooperation between the FAA and the city enabled us to reach this innovative solution, which resolves longstanding legal and regulatory disputes,'' FAA Administrator Michael Huerta said today. ``This is a fair resolution for all concerned because it strikes an appropriate balance between the public's interest in making local decisions about land use practices and its interests in safe and efficient aviation services.''
In 2014, Santa Monica voters passed a measure mandating that if the airport closes, the only permitted use of the land without a public vote would be parks, open space, recreation, education and/or cultural use.
Copyright 2017 FOX 11 Los Angeles : Download our mobile app for breaking news alerts or to watch FOX 11 News | Follow us on Facebook , Twitter , Instagram , and YouTube . Be a citizen journalist for FOX 11 and get paid - download the Fresco News App today.