Our Airport

This has been sitting on the back burner for some time. A letter to the editor from the September 28, 2017 edition of the print Milwaukee Journal Sentinel decried the operation of the Mitchell International Airport…fondly remembered by us old farts as General Billy Mitchell Field. I don’t want to go into the issues he saw with the airport…particularly given that a letter writer two days later straightened out the misstatements in the original letter.

But where I want to go with this…is the letter writer’s continued use of the term our airport through out the letter. Our airport…Mitchell International Airport is owned and operated by Milwaukee County…the letter writer is from Brookfield WI…the heart of the reddest red county…Waukesha County. So to a Brookdfielder is isn’t technically our airport If he had left it there, I would have taken umbrage since he essentially has no skin in the game…as they say.

But he didn’t leave it there…he went on to say that the airport is a resource utilized by many businesses and many people from beyond the boundaries of Milwaukee County…and he is 100% correct. He suggests that the state government and state business powers that be develop a new model to manage the airport that represents the needs of the entire region.

No kidding…but didn’t the state just recently destroy…since the ascension of Governor Walker…of a regional transportation authority? You know they hate public support of mass transportation!

But seriously. It would be more than appropriate if there was a Southeastern Wisconsin Transportation Authority that managed the airport, the Milwaukee County Transit System, the Milwaukee street car, and every other public transportation infrastructure in the area and build it out to support the entire region. And that should include input and planning for future major repairs, upgrades and replacements for the area interstates as well. Hey…maybe some regional light rail…whadya think? But unless business leaders really get behind something like this, there is no way the state legislature or Governor Walker would ever have it cross their minds.


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