Residential Encroachment at Scottsdale Airport

Only city council candidates Guy Phillips, Copper Phillips, and Chris Schaffner are committed to protecting Scottsdale Airport’s jobs from residential encroachment. Scottsdale resident, former USAF pilot, and former Frontier Airlines captain Jim Haxby sent this letter out to the pilot community in the Valley.

“The City Council’s approval of two proposals for apartments near Scottsdale Airport drew heavy criticism from those who believe it will prompt restrictions and jeopardize federal grant funding. The controversy also resulted in the council removing John Washington from the advisory commission, at Mayor Jim Lane’s request, after the commissioner asked the FAA to weigh in on the issue.”
[From the Scottsdale Republic’s Year in Review]

The Scottsdale Airpark was developed with commercial and light manufacturing serving as a buffer between Scottsdale Airport operations and residential housing. The Airpark is an important economic generator for Scottsdale and the second largest employment center in the state. Recently, the Scottsdale City Council has voted to reduce building set back requirements, increase building heights to six stories and allow apartments in the Scottsdale Airpark.

As pilots, we have all experienced the ill effects of residential encroachment as it creeps toward airports. Restrictive curfews, “deep cut-back” noise abatement procedures, reduced takeoff and landing weights are the usual mandates to the noise complaints generated by residential creep. For sure, the zoning concessions granted in the Airpark will eventually lead to same type of restrictions at KSDL.

Folks, most of us don’t have time to keep track of the City unless they do something stupid in our backyard. Building residential housing in the Airpark is stupid and the only way that we can protect KSDL and the federal grant funds that maintain the airport is to elect a responsible Council.

In this November election, we have a clear choice for the three seats open on the Scottsdale City Council. We have three candidates that will protect the Airpark: Chris Schaffner, Guy Phillips, and Cooper Phillips. And, we have three candidates that believe any development is good no matter what the consequences, Klapp, Korte, Luoma.

Council candidate Chris Schaffner stood shoulder-to-shoulder with local pilots and pilot-Councilman Bob Littlefield adamantly opposed to the building height increases and apartments under the traffic pattern. Schaffner has championed to protect the Scottsdale Airpark.

Incumbent Suzanne Klapp on the other hand, voted to approve increased building heights and to approve over 1550 (yes over fifteen hundred) apartments in the Airpark, even some under the 65-decibel footprint despite the FAA saying it was a “bad idea.” Can you imagine the noise complaints that 3000+ residents living under the pattern will generate?

Candidates Guy Phillips and Copper Phillips (no relation) are both opposed to apartments under the traffic pattern and are working to protect the Airpark. Pilot-Councilman Littlefield enthusiastically endorses Chris Schaffner, Guy Phillips and Copper Phillips for the Scottsdale City Council.

In order to stop this unbridled up-zoning and assault on the Airpark, we need to elect Chris Schaffner, Guy Phillips and Joanne Phillips to the Scottsdale City Council. Please join me in spreading the word to all Scottsdale pilots. Please forward this to all the Scottsdale pilots and voters on your email list.

Thank you,

Jim Haxby

480 991-7768

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