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Should Orange County expand John Wayne Airport’s operations?

John Wayne airport in Orange County.
John Wayne airport in Orange County.
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A report from Orange County’s Grand Jury suggests that constraints on John Wayne Airport are limiting its economic impact.

Newport Beach residents are bristling at the report, which comes near the end of a “curfew” that expires in 2015. Currently, the airports operations are restricted so as to limit the amount of noise and pollution in the area.

The report argues that expanding operations, including the number of departing flights and the ease of parking near the airport, could contribute to a more robust economy in Orange County, potentially luring customers from nearby airports.

Critics of the report call it one-sided, arguing that increases in passenger caps and departures would bring down the value of homes in the area, and that current constraints should be kept in place until there are quieter jet fleets on the market.

Should John Wayne expand its operations? Are the airport’s strict curfews a selling point for the city, or are they damaging the local economy? If John Wayne were to expand, would you be more likely to fly out of Newport Beach?


Jill Cowan, County Government and Projects Reporter at the Daily Pilot in Orange County