Date: Jul 24, 2008
Press Release Number: 80-2008
Runways and taxiways will become more efficient, aircraft on the ground will be more closely tracked, and greater use of the largest passenger and cargo planes will increase capacity at John F. Kennedy International and Newark Liberty International airports as the result of $68 million worth of improvement programs approved today by the Port Authority Board of Commissioners.
The action comes two weeks after the Port Authority's Flight Delay Task Force, a high-level group of influential stakeholders in the aviation industry that produced more than 100 recommendations to reduce delays, increase safety and improve customer service, reconvened to demand that federal officials overhaul a 1950s era air traffic control system.
The Port Authority has called for solutions that increase capacity through investments in new technology and opposes efforts to limit capacity by implementing an auction system for airlines to bid on slots. An auction system is not expected to reduce flight delays and will serve only as an additional tax on metropolitan-area passengers, increasing tickets prices by an estimated 12 percent.
Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, “The investments we're announcing today demonstrate our ongoing and firm commitment to do what we can to improve the flying experience for our customers. They build on the Task Force's conclusion that reducing flight delays requires making capacity-expanding investments in the nation's aviation system. We now call on our federal partners to do their part and begin replacing the decades-old air traffic control system at our nation's airports, beginning with the three major airports in the New York region."
Executive Director Chris Ward said, “This is one of many steps we must take to attack head on the delay problems at our airports. But we also need the federal government as our partner if we are ever going to fundamentally fix this problem. That is why we will continue to urge the federal government to pull back its misguided policies that will only increase delays and costs to consumers."
The measures approved by the Board today include: