The effort to reduce delays and bring relief to Logan International Airport's passengers went to court today where the Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport) filed a lawsuit to lift a 25-year-old injunction to permit construction of Runway 14/32. In the suit filed in the Suffolk County Superior Court, Massport demonstrated that the reasoning behind the 1976 injunction no longer holds since the runway has received approval from the state top's environmental official.
The 1976 injunction was put into place because Massport had not complied with the then recently enacted Massachusetts Environmental Policy Act (MEPA). In contrast, fast forward a quarter of a century and Massport has conducted almost six years of public process and comprehensive environmental review culminating in a certificate from the state environmental secretary. With the certificate that states that Massport has fully complied with and completed the MEPA process, the authority has addressed the issue that led to the initial injunction.
"Today's court filing is another major step forward in our effort to fix the airport and bring relief to the millions of people who depend on Logan," said Massport Executive Director and CEO Virginia Buckingham.
Currently, Logan is ranked the nation's fifth worst airport for delays and second worst for arrival delays. A new runway will reduce delays by 30 percent and knock Logan from the list of top ten most delayed airports.
Massport expects to file a Final Environmental Impact Statement with the FAA later this summer with the expectation that the FAA will issue a Record of Decision, the final environmental approval needed, later this year. If all approvals are received in 2001, the runway could be operational as early as 2003.