Sources: Commercial flights at Paine Field all but a done deal

Print
Email
|

by ERIC WILKINSON / KING 5 News

NWCN.com

Posted on November 30, 2012 at 1:14 PM

Updated Friday, Nov 30 at 6:49 PM

The take out business at Z's Burgers in Mukilteo is about to take off. It’s a combo meal of sorts, served up at nearby Paine Field, with commercial air travel soon to be added to private flights.

The restaurant’s owner, however, who has built his burger business on Boeing, opposes the plan.

“Mukilteo city is gonna be a mess,” said U.C. Shin.

Shin believes even though his restaurant would prosper with about 3,000 more people per day coming to the city, his quality of life would diminish.

“I want to move on with a nice life in Mukilteo - quiet, nice. Hopefully (it will) be like this for another 10 years,” he said.
 
Traffic, noise and home values have people in the flight path opposing the plan. In September, the FAA determined additional flights would bring very little negative impact.

Las Vegas based Allegiant Air plans to fly an additional 20 or so flights a day out of Paine Field. There are already nearly 300 a day, mostly small planes but plenty of big Boeing airliners, as well.

Those who have studied the economics of it say just one airline would help the entire county.

“Those folks are going to need rental cars, hotels. Visitor spending will increase significantly. I think you can figure out there’s a positive business case to do that,” said John Monroe, COO of the Economic Alliance of Snohomish County.
 
Two new gates would be added to Paine Field. The county would be on the hook to pay for them. It’s still unclear where that money will come from in this dreary economy.

The more pressing question for many: Will Paine Field one day become the Sea-Tac of the North?

“You add one airline here, and a few flights there,” said U.C. Shin, “and before you know it, it’s out of control.”
 
Allegiant currently plans to run flights between Everett and Las Vegas. Horizon Air has officially backed out of the deal, taking with it flights to Spokane and Portland.
 
The official announcement will come Monday. Opponents are planning for a possible legal appeal. They don't believe all of the proper environmental considerations have been met. The first flight is likely at least a year away.
 

Print
Email
|