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Comments about ‘In our opinion: Airport expansion reflects the growing vitality of Utah's national and global links’

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Published: Friday, July 25 2014 12:00 a.m. MDT

Updated: Thursday, July 24 2014 7:32 p.m. MDT

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aceroinox
Farmington, UT

As nice as it is to have something new and shiny, the $1.8 billion is not free money. It comes from federal grants (which last I checked come from our taxes) and user fees. Which population uses the SLC airport more than any other? Utahns!

Yes, you can argue the grant funding is spread across all US taxpayers, but that ignores the fact that Utah taxpayers are also participating in the funding for grants all across the country...these grants add up! During a period when the federal deficit is ballooning out of control, it's hard to celebrate our new airport because it's going to better accommodate those greeting arriving passengers and enable grand views of the surrounding mountains (which are easily viewed during landing and takeoff, unless it's overcast, in which case they wouldn't be seen from the terminal, either).

It is very difficult to complain about budget deficits when we are all too eager to stick our hand out for federal largesse when it benefits us. It is time to bite the bullet and live a bit smaller!

high school fan
Huntington, UT

The grants do not come from the taxpayer but from the fund that all aviation users pay into to cover exactly things like this. This is a dedicated fund with dedicated uses.
This is a great move since so much of the salt lake airport is old.

mufasta
American Fork, UT

That airport expansion somehow relates to the vitality of the state is a terrible logical jump. The reason the airport is expanding is because they maintain a special dispensation budget that requires that they use it or lose it. If they do not spend their money, the are required to give it back to the state. That is why they are always performing some useless construction at the airport. Lets be honest in our reporting.

Tyler McArthur
South Jordan, UT

Wow, lots of negative comments... I think this is great! And with no new/increased taxes. I love the fact that I'm from Utah, with the best state government in the country.

1conservative
WEST VALLEY CITY, UT

There's no such thing as "free money".

I would have been interested to see what would have happened if the airport authority would have done an (unbiased)poll of air travelers (the ones who actually are forced to pay the additional tax)how they felt about the issue.

Utah politicians are at least as good at spending other peoples money as bureaucrats in D.C. They dream up all kinds of "nice" stuff (freeways, taj mahal police buildings, rail lines, etc)and don't have much problem at all in committing large amounts of YOUR tax dollars to pay for their dreams.

Of course, then they hire the best spinmeisters they can to make it look like we're not really paying anything at all!

Fitz
Murray, UT

The Airport Expansion is adding only eight new gates. This is not really an expansion, it is trying to keep up with the other airports new buildings. There is one part of the Airport that are old and need to be replaced, that would be Terminal 1. Terminal 2 and the International Terminal need some updating, but they don't really need to be replaced. The area hosting Skyest could also use an update. The parking areas could use a new structure for long and short term parking, with the short term parking structure being tron down so that the remodel for Terminal 1 and the new Terminal 1, could be accommodated.

Overall, this project is more of one keeping up with the Jones, it is not a necessity, it is a want, and it is way too expensive for the little it will provide. The cost of this will hit every person that flies in and out of SLC Airport, the cost is added to your airplane ticket. This is not a free ride, it is very expensive and poor use of money.

JimInSLC
Salt Lake City, UT

Build it and they will come! I think the airport planning committee has been watching too many movies. The airport could use some upgrades and renovation, but should be done on an as needed basis, not a major rebuild.

@aceroinx Fed money does not come from taxpayers, the FED just prints it as they need it and then add the cost to the national debt for future taxpayers to pay. America has been living on the backs of future generations for too long. Maybe they think that when the dollar collapses (a result of their monetary policy) the slate will be wiped clean.

CHS 85
Sandy, UT

The only people who are complaining about this are people who don't actually travel through SLC. It is a pain to change planes here - especially if you are on Delta and connect to Delta Connection and the stupid bus terminal E gates.

This renovation/rebuild has been planned for many years and is desperately needed.

giantfan
Farmington, UT

I fly frequently and I see this as a good thing for SLC. The current airport may score highly now in efficiency and other amenities but I do believe remodeling needs to be done sooner rather than later as to not have a dilapidated structure on our hands in a few short years. Other airports are adding amenities that make having to spend any sort of layover actually enjoyable. Since SLC relies heavily on connecting fliers, it is important to "keep up with the Jones'" or else fliers will bypass a SLC connection as much as possible in the future, which will force Delta to alter route schedules which will ultimately hurt the local economy. And those of you doubting the strength of SLC as a destination haven't seen the mass arriving/departing that exists on the weekends--especially during ski season.

LivinLarge
Bountiful, UT

Sorry my SLC friends and relatives, Salt Lake City does not even rank in the top 50 of travel destinations in the US. SLC is good for a hub for many travelers, just not as a destination.

don17
Temecula, CA

Why the Airport expansion is needed and beneficial to Salt Lake City and Utah in general:

Salt Lake City manages this airport. Not the state of Utah.

8 additional gates means approx 192 extra daily landing and takeoff's and 28,400 additional passengers carried daily increasing the airport capacity on a yearly basis from 20 million passengers to 30 million passengers. The long term effect on the economy by 2022 would be near to 6 to 8 billion dollars a year in additional economic impact to Salt Lake specially and Utah in general.

Larger planes such as A380's and 747's and newer designs will be more easily accommodated.

Future growth of larger corporation could be enhanced that is not fractured in yet.

Example: Chicago Midway airport: Similar runway numbers and passenger traffic remodeled and handles nearly 100,000 additional airline operations per year. In addition, if Chicago hadn't the foresight to expand 60 years ago O hare and it's 8 runways would not exist: resulting in 70 million passengers and more importantly 38.1 billion dollars in economic impact affecting the creation of 500,000 jobs directly related back to O hare.

Salt Lake needs the expansion to grow. Politicians of both parties see this economic driver. Do the residents?

don17
Temecula, CA

This is actually a function of combined government agencies that makes sense economically. The build out will lessen the cost to individuals in the long run by expanding the pool of users. This spreads the costs to a wider segment thus lowering the per use cost. Better efficiency. In addition, the new design will cut energy use at this airport by 30% or so. Saving money while giving a commanding look at the mountains there, which no mural in any other airport can match. That will positively benefit tourism.

For those of you thinking 1.8 billion will magically appear or all come out of your wallet please take into account these facts:

1. Additional airline landing fees
2. Additional air cargo fees
3 Additional sales tax revenue
4. Additional property, income, and other taxes.
5 Tens of thousands of new jobs created over the next 8 to 10 years with those individuals paying taxes from the new business development: new homes, stores, schools, highways, parks, being built to service the expansion of jobs generated by an expanding airport. More jobs means additional city, county and state revenues without raising taxes if done right.

Other Airports expanding that will have an effect on SLC. Chicago Peetone, LAX.

Ultra Bob
Cottonwood Heights, UT

Cheers for the growth, tears loss of freedom and money for the people who will have to pay for it.

Statements like:

"It will also elevate the stature of the community it serves in a way that will pay dividends for decades to come".

"It will be paid for with revenue from fees and taxes associated with travel and not require any new levies on Utah citizens".

"The expansion will contribute more than $3.3 billion to the state’s economy and employ 24,000 people during the eight-year construction period. The effect on the airport itself will be transformative".

"Aside from serving the utilitarian purposes of air travel, the new Salt Lake Airport will also serve as a proper reflection of the area’s growing cultural and economic vitality."

Do we need it? Do we want it? Perhaps we do, but only if it performs as promised.

If the project fails to do its job, the people who are the investors should be the ones to lose their money, not the taxpayer.

high school fan
Huntington, UT

The naysayers said the same thing about both I 15 projects, about Trax and Trax expansion and about FrontRunner. Some just like to complain but so far each and every project has made Utah a better place to live.
In construction one often finds that it is both cheaper and better to replace rather than remodel the existing structure.

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