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County Supervisors OK Plan For Long-Range Flights Out Of McClellan-Palomar Airport

Aerial view of Palomar Airport and surrounding property in Carlsbad is shown ...

Credit: San Diego County

Above: Aerial view of Palomar Airport and surrounding property in Carlsbad is shown in this undated photo.

The San Diego County Board of Supervisors voted unanimously Wednesdsay to approve a new 20-year master plan for the McClellan-Palomar Airport. Supervisor Kristin Gaspar recused herself.

Part of the update includes extending the existing runway up to 800 feet. The county of San Diego said this would allow airplanes to reach the East Coast, Europe and China without having to refuel.

RELATED: Palomar Airport Master Plan Seeks Clearance From Community

People living in the area are concerned that a longer runway could mean a lot of noisy planes — but Supervisor Bill Horn, who is also a pilot, said technology is helping fix that.

"Those airplanes are a lot quieter than the old stuff," Horn said. "And that’s just going to improve the noise issue."

A report from county staff said a longer runway would mean airplanes are able to increase elevation sooner after takeoff which could also reduce noise on the ground.

RELATED: Palomar Airport Master Plan Gets Mixed Reactions In North County

An economic analysis shows that by 2030 the Palomar airport could support more than 4,500 jobs and provide $33 million in state and local tax revenue. The runway extension project is expected to take 13 to 20 years to complete, depending on available funding.

The McClellan-Palomar Airport is located in the city of Carlsbad and owned by the county of San Diego. The existing length of the runway is just shy of 5,000 feet.

The San Diego County Board of Supervisors voted to approve a new master plan for the McClellan-Palomar Airport that will extend the existing runway.

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Matt Hoffman
General Assignment Reporter

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI am a general assignment reporter for KPBS. In addition to covering the latest news and issues that are relevant to the San Diego community, I like to dig deeper to find the voices and perspectives that other media often miss.

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