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There seems to be a great deal of momentum building behind the movement to close East Hampton Airport. Without commenting on the merits of that issue, I am concerned that a shutdown of East Hampton Airport, or any substantial reduction in its traffic, will cause a proportionate increase in traffic at Westhampton’s Gabreski Airport.
We’ve seen more than once that acting on narrow, parochial interests does not serve the East End well. A broad, regionwide view is always the better way, looking at the welfare of the whole five-town area rather than just the concerns of a single village or town.
Let’s not let a measure improving the quality of life in East Hampton result in damage to the quality of life in Westhampton and its neighboring communities. Let’s not have all those users barred from East Hampton Airport just shift their commuting and traveling to Gabreski. That’s unacceptable.
One approach might be to keep East Hampton open with strict limits on the number and times of takeoffs and landings, and to impose similar limits at Gabreski. There are probably other ways to address the issue, but the point is, we can’t just transfer the problem to Westhampton … [more]