Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Imagining the future of SM Airport, September 1

Envision some possibilities

Santa Monica Airport is a part of the City of Santa Monica that residents rarely see and use – and even fewer see it by bike – or envision potential cycling connectivity relating to this space. 

This Sunday at the Green Tent, Michael Brodsky will explain the purpose of an upcoming bike ride around the airport. 

Learn about the impact of the airport in its current state - air pollution, noise, sustainability, safety - and some surprising alternatives that are being considered.   

The FAA contract with the City of Santa Monica ends in 2015. There are residents who feel that the contract should not be renewed. They are beginning to explore exciting new possibilities for the land use that could turn this facility into a healthy benefit for the entire city and region. 

Concerns and questions put forward include:
  • Nearby residents who feel severely impacted by the airport facility voice concerns about air pollution, lead pollution, constant noise and regular plane crashes.
  • Residents who do not live near the airport have questioned the cost of subsidizing the airport as well as the significant environmental costs and lack of sustainability that private jet travel represents.
  • Some question the expense and pollution of running this 227 acre facility that is used by very few residents. Should so few benefit from this large property that the City owns and maintains?
Michael is a member of Santa Monica Spoke, a local chapter of the Los Angeles County BIcycle Coalition. Come share your concerns and ideas - or just chat about bike riding. Learn how you can participate in the SM Airport  bike ride.


  1. Many years ago, I worked with several environmental organizations to prevent Playa Vista from becoming a reality, but saw that money and people with power usually win. Now another opportunity to responsibly use a large parcel for all to enjoy is under consideration and we must do our best to overwhelm the greedy people with popular support.

    Except for some SMC structures and recreational facilities in place, I would demolish most of the Santa Monica Airport (SMA) down to the bare soil and decontaminate any areas needing to be purged of toxic substances.

    When safe to develop, I would turn the area into such low impact assets such as an area with a lake as its focal point and a xeriscape with California native plants and walk paths. Perhaps picnic areas and (water) sculptures could be placed around lake. Urban campsites could also be part of the urban wilderness experience with sites for rentable cabins as well as tents and outdoor kitchens.

    There could be a nature preserve with a nature center at its hub where tours of wildlife and ecosystems could be given by volunteer naturalists. There could be places set aside for hiking, rock climbing, bird watching, nature photography Etc.

    An outdoor amphitheater could be a centerpiece for outdoor performances, movies, cultural events, festivals Etc.

    A special place could be set aside for private events like weddings, parties, family reunions Etc.

    Best of luck with your ambitious goals.

    1. Great suggestions! Not so sure about urban campsites however.