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jliv

Redeveloping Orlando Executive Airport

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Hi all,

   A quick intro: I'm a long-time lurker and occasional poster on these forums, and I am a complete urban planning/development nerd.  I was born and raised in Orlando as a second-generation Floridian, and received my college education in Florida.  For as long as I can remember, I've always questioned whether the Orlando Executive Airport is truly a valuable public asset in its current form. What I used to see while driving down the E-W Expressway over Lake Underhill was a parking lot for Lou Pearlman's blimps, a launch pad for an handful of private Cessna's, those biplanes with the Church Street Station banners, and the occasional corporate jet carrying some golfer or CEO.  IMHO I also saw a massive plot of land that is ripe for development similar to the redevelopment of the Naval Training Center, which is now the Baldwin Park neighborhood.  Wouldn't the the public be better served if this asset was repurposed to include sister developments to Lake Baldwin (Herndon Park, anyone)?  It would extend the bungalow neighborhoods from downtown to Azalea Park in the East, with links to Sunrail via a future LRT/BRT line.  Orlando would enjoy a significant boost to its tax base as a result, the additional funds could be invested in the arts, more open space, monuments and detailings, and other features that make cities great.  

   What do you think? Discuss amongst yourselves...

Edited by jliv
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Though I doubt this will ever happen, this is excellent. I have always thought the executive airport serves too small of a market to support how much it hinders the development of the entire area. Really hope to see something change, but I doubt it will. 

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Though I doubt this will ever happen, this is excellent. I have always thought the executive airport serves too small of a market to support how much it hinders the development of the entire area. Really hope to see something change, but I doubt it will. 

 

Is it really impossible?  The GOAA board only contains two members whom are locally elected: the Mayor of Orlando and the Mayor of Orange County.  The rest of the board (5 members) consists of political appointees from the state by the Governor, confirmed by the Legislature. In essence, the balanced-budget, fiscally prudent nature of the state government would respond to a compelling case to sell public land to private interests (well-financed developers with good ideas like the Pritzker family in the 90's).  It would please both the Tea Party and the Sierra Club bases if a good plan of the caliber of Baldwin Park were proposed. Remediation of a large polluted property, cessation of aircraft noise, and a opportunity once again to create a showcase, world-class, grid-based, smart growth development would appeal to local interests. It would also allow developers to address the urban blight the GOAA created along SR 50 with all of that misguided 80's retail development; I remember seeing 'Aliens' at the General Cinema at Colonial Promenade in 1986, and remember how the strip mall had an excessive amount of vacancies and turnover.  I worked at both the Phar-Mor and the Sound Warehouse as a teenager and it continued, as it does to this day.  Tear them all down and create a grand gateway between Baldwin Park and the new Herndon Park!

Edited by jliv

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BTW the Orlando CSA (inclusive of Daytona Beach) is served by 7 airports: 3 international airports and 4 municipal airports.  I think the area could lose 1, especially in the heart of the city.

Edited by jliv

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My questions would be if OIA can take over the services provided so we aren't shoving money at other communities. Also, the National Business Aviation Association hosts it's convention and exhibition every two years (the evens) with Vegas. Part of the design of the new North Hall at OCCC was specifically geared to this show. True, this year they will only fill up half the new building, but it is one of the top trade shows with around 25,000 attendees. And these attendees have bank, and with the displays and events being both at the OCCC and the ORL these attendees stretch into downtown more than other shows. Contracts go as far as 2018, or so I'm told.

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Personally I think the airport should stay.  I'm not sure about the numbers (flight).  But I see planes zooming by in DT during the day that land there (from west to east) all the time, so I think it's pretty busy with general aviation traffic.

 

Also, regarding that convention-- I agree-- don't do anything to jeopardize it coming here.  that's $$$.

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Good 'ol interwebs. Seems in 2009 MCO was the 14th busiest main airline type airports while ORL was the 25th busiest general aviation. Interestingly, Daytona Beach (DAB) was #2, Ft. Lauderdale (FXE) and Miami's Kendall-Tamiami (TMB) #7 and #10 for the business market.s

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Personally I think the airport should stay. I'm not sure about the numbers (flight). But I see planes zooming by in DT during the day that land there (from west to east) all the time, so I think it's pretty busy with general aviation traffic.

Also, regarding that convention-- I agree-- don't do anything to jeopardize it coming here. that's $$$.

I bet you the financial impact of adding hundreds of high-value residential and commercial properties to the tax rolls would far surpass the impact of a trade show. Would like to analyse the impact of Baldwin Park.

Anyhow, couldn't Orlando Sanford handle the traffic from ORL?

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I bet you the financial impact of adding hundreds of high-value residential and commercial properties to the tax rolls would far surpass the impact of a trade show. Would like to analyse the impact of Baldwin Park.

Anyhow, couldn't Orlando Sanford handle the traffic from ORL?

 

And Kissimmee Gateway Airport -- which is vastly underused, has room to expand, and close to the attractions and tradeshows.

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what ever happened with that issue of, what, sequestration, where they cut funding to some FAA towers around the state?  I thought a couple of area airports were hurt by that.

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And Kissimmee Gateway Airport -- which is vastly underused, has room to expand, and close to the attractions and tradeshows.

 

Kissimmee Gateway Airport would actually have Sunrail access to its immediate south!  LOL

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First, I think we all agree that jliv is exactly right that the area surrounding Herndon Airport (Orlando Exec, if you must: I hate renaming something- it's a little like repainting the barn like they did in Animal Farm - and in this case it was with a name that is totally forgettable) is like a giant unmade bed. There are, of course reasons for that, starting with the fact it was once part of the Orlando Air Corps facility (later Orlando AFB) going back to the WWII era. The area around military bases is often quite tacky. GOAA has also contributed to the problem, as liv noted, with its developments on the perimeter. We'll get back to that.

 

More importantly, however, Herndon is a precious asset to downtown. Why? Today, any corporate exec worth his or her salt flies private. ANECDOTE: Remember when the Detroit Big 3 all flew in to DC on their corporate jets to beg Congress for money? It never occurred to them they were doing anything wrong (in their defense, time is money, and in the post 9/11 age, commercial air travel wastes tons of both.)

 

Nevertheless, that's how the 1% get around these days. ANECDOTE: Pick up any Grisham novel of the past decade or more and see how the, ummm, high-flying trial lawyers obsess over the latest Gulfstream. Private aircraft remain one of the most status-conscious perks any titan can have.

 

Why do we care about the 1%? As a liberal Democrat, it ain't easy. However, those are the folks who make decisions about where to locate corporate facilities. Having such easy, convenient access for those folks to downtown only heightens the potential for attracting the kinds of employment centers we want downtown.

 

Even if we don't attract anyone new, our current 1% has no incentive to lose such a fantastic way in and out of town. Our esteemed governor has shown he could care less about the long-term welfare of Florida. He'll listened to the powerful. It's more likely they'll move the courthouse to Rich Crotty's ersatz Downtown Orange County than they'll shut down Herndon Airport.

 

Back to GOAA, however. As has been mentioned, most of the board is appointed by Gov. Rick "Show Me the Money" Scott. Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and OC Mayor Teresa Jacobs round out the board. First of all, it's ridiculous that a local asset like this reports to the governor instead of local leaders, but there's a reason: a fun scandal involving Skyline Restaurants owner Champ Williams, hidden Kruggerands and lots of corruption back in the late 70's. It's probably time to bring control back (OUC is the example of how effective the City's authorities can be when they want to), but that's not likely to happen anytime soon.

 

Now, either Buddy or Teresa could prod GOAA to do a better job with the income-producing properties surrounding Herndon. Teresa really has no dog in that fight - her base is Dr Phillips and if downtown burned tomorrow, she wouldn't much care. Buddy certainly could (and we all know that what Buddy wants, Buddy gets). Buddy, however, as we've talked about endlessly here, really could care less about the aesthetics and details of Orlando's neighborhoods. If GOAA announced they needed $100 million for a new terminal tomorrow, Buddy would be your guy. Everyday nitty-gritty improvements - it's not his thing.

 

The only way to replace Herndon would be if there were a spot just as convenient for The Powers That Be, and there isn't one (can you imagine the NIMBY howl if you dared announce such a thing?)

 

One fine day, when we elect our next mayor, if we concentrate on moving past Buddy's big projects and get back to the days where someone actually believes we need to live up to the name "The City Beautiful," we need to have the legislative delegation bring GOAA control back home. Then, we can encourage much better development of Herndon's periphery. It might also be prudent to take a look at requirements for the airport's infrastructure (we can do better than Butler buildings). Also, besides the park that recently reopened (kudos to the City for getting around to that), is there more of the empty land on the east side that can be repurposed?

 

Orlando's fortunate to have such a close-in general aviation facility - it's a great selling feature for our downtown. We can, however, and should demand that what the public sees everyday be tidied up. 

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First, I think we all agree that jliv is exactly right that the area surrounding Herndon Airport (Orlando Exec, if you must: I hate renaming something- it's a little like repainting the barn like they did in Animal Farm - and in this case it was with a name that is totally forgettable) is like a giant unmade bed. There are, of course reasons for that, starting with the fact it was once part of the Orlando Air Corps facility (later Orlando AFB) going back to the WWII era. The area around military bases is often quite tacky. GOAA has also contributed to the problem, as liv noted, with its developments on the perimeter. We'll get back to that.

 

More importantly, however, Herndon is a precious asset to downtown. Why? Today, any corporate exec worth his or her salt flies private. ANECDOTE: Remember when the Detroit Big 3 all flew in to DC on their corporate jets to beg Congress for money? It never occurred to them they were doing anything wrong (in their defense, time is money, and in the post 9/11 age, commercial air travel wastes tons of both.)

 

Nevertheless, that's how the 1% get around these days. ANECDOTE: Pick up any Grisham novel of the past decade or more and see how the, ummm, high-flying trial lawyers obsess over the latest Gulfstream. Private aircraft remain one of the most status-conscious perks any titan can have.

 

Why do we care about the 1%? As a liberal Democrat, it ain't easy. However, those are the folks who make decisions about where to locate corporate facilities. Having such easy, convenient access for those folks to downtown only heightens the potential for attracting the kinds of employment centers we want downtown.

 

Even if we don't attract anyone new, our current 1% has no incentive to lose such a fantastic way in and out of town. Our esteemed governor has shown he could care less about the long-term welfare of Florida. He'll listened to the powerful. It's more likely they'll move the courthouse to Rich Crotty's ersatz Downtown Orange County than they'll shut down Herndon Airport.

 

Back to GOAA, however. As has been mentioned, most of the board is appointed by Gov. Rick "Show Me the Money" Scott. Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and OC Mayor Teresa Jacobs round out the board. First of all, it's ridiculous that a local asset like this reports to the governor instead of local leaders, but there's a reason: a fun scandal involving Skyline Restaurants owner Champ Williams, hidden Kruggerands and lots of corruption back in the late 70's. It's probably time to bring control back (OUC is the example of how effective the City's authorities can be when they want to), but that's not likely to happen anytime soon.

 

Now, either Buddy or Teresa could prod GOAA to do a better job with the income-producing properties surrounding Herndon. Teresa really has no dog in that fight - her base is Dr Phillips and if downtown burned tomorrow, she wouldn't much care. Buddy certainly could (and we all know that what Buddy wants, Buddy gets). Buddy, however, as we've talked about endlessly here, really could care less about the aesthetics and details of Orlando's neighborhoods. If GOAA announced they needed $100 million for a new terminal tomorrow, Buddy would be your guy. Everyday nitty-gritty improvements - it's not his thing.

 

The only way to replace Herndon would be if there were a spot just as convenient for The Powers That Be, and there isn't one (can you imagine the NIMBY howl if you dared announce such a thing?)

 

One fine day, when we elect our next mayor, if we concentrate on moving past Buddy's big projects and get back to the days where someone actually believes we need to live up to the name "The City Beautiful," we need to have the legislative delegation bring GOAA control back home. Then, we can encourage much better development of Herndon's periphery. It might also be prudent to take a look at requirements for the airport's infrastructure (we can do better than Butler buildings). Also, besides the park that recently reopened (kudos to the City for getting around to that), is there more of the empty land on the east side that can be repurposed?

 

Orlando's fortunate to have such a close-in general aviation facility - it's a great selling feature for our downtown. We can, however, and should demand that what the public sees everyday be tidied up

All good points. However, I don't see a major investment in downtown by corporate interests.  Over the years, the large corporations have selected sites in Lake Mary, Maitland, and near UCF for their operations. Hardly convenient to Herndon...ahem...I mean, Orlando Executive Airport.  Cities like Atlanta and Charlotte have done just fine without a municipal airport so close in to their downtowns (Peachtree-Dekalb Airport is 11 miles from downtown, 6 miles from Buckhead).  My question is more about about the numbers: http://www.orlandoairports.net/finance/budget.pdf.  If you notice, the airport gets little mention in the document, but the budget at the end states it draws about $2.8 million a year, all from rental income as it does not assess landing fees (I'll assume a chuck of that is from the blighted retail space fronting SR 50).  

 

So, an airport for the 1% to park their Cessnas or corporate jets vs. a grand neighborhood to extend the bungalow neighborhoods downtown all the way to Azalea Park.  The better option is perfectly clear!

 

(BTW my idea is completely inspired by the closure of Flughafen Templehof in Berlin in 2008, a historic place where American and British forces won the hearts of the West Berlin residents in 1948 with the great Berlin Airlift for 11 months during a Soviet blockade.  The airport long outlasted its usefulness; as it cannot be expanded or adapted to modern air travel requirements.  Now Berliners have a grand public park; I've hiked its vast runways many times as cyclists whizzed by.  It's very popular with kite enthusiasts, too.  There are plans to add housing in the coming years around the periphery; I see no compelling reason why the old Herndon Airport can't be put out to pasture and put to use as parkland and housing to benefit all in the city.)

Edited by jliv

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^^

great analysis.

 

yeah, the whole non investment in downtown thing really bugs me.  In the last 5-6 years alone, we could have had Darden, Adventist Health, and Verizon pack downtown with buku office space usage.  I know there's much more, but I can't recall at the moment.

 

At least Chase took over some space in the Plaza South Tower.

 

I wonder if the super influx of downtown residential will attract new companies downtown b/c of a potential local workforce.  That plus Sunrail...

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First, I think we all agree that jliv is exactly right that the area surrounding Herndon Airport (Orlando Exec, if you must: I hate renaming something- it's a little like repainting the barn like they did in Animal Farm - and in this case it was with a name that is totally forgettable) is like a giant unmade bed. There are, of course reasons for that, starting with the fact it was once part of the Orlando Air Corps facility (later Orlando AFB) going back to the WWII era. The area around military bases is often quite tacky. GOAA has also contributed to the problem, as liv noted, with its developments on the perimeter. We'll get back to that.

 

More importantly, however, Herndon is a precious asset to downtown. Why? Today, any corporate exec worth his or her salt flies private. ANECDOTE: Remember when the Detroit Big 3 all flew in to DC on their corporate jets to beg Congress for money? It never occurred to them they were doing anything wrong (in their defense, time is money, and in the post 9/11 age, commercial air travel wastes tons of both.)

 

Nevertheless, that's how the 1% get around these days. ANECDOTE: Pick up any Grisham novel of the past decade or more and see how the, ummm, high-flying trial lawyers obsess over the latest Gulfstream. Private aircraft remain one of the most status-conscious perks any titan can have.

 

Why do we care about the 1%? As a liberal Democrat, it ain't easy. However, those are the folks who make decisions about where to locate corporate facilities. Having such easy, convenient access for those folks to downtown only heightens the potential for attracting the kinds of employment centers we want downtown.

 

Even if we don't attract anyone new, our current 1% has no incentive to lose such a fantastic way in and out of town. Our esteemed governor has shown he could care less about the long-term welfare of Florida. He'll listened to the powerful. It's more likely they'll move the courthouse to Rich Crotty's ersatz Downtown Orange County than they'll shut down Herndon Airport.

 

Back to GOAA, however. As has been mentioned, most of the board is appointed by Gov. Rick "Show Me the Money" Scott. Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer and OC Mayor Teresa Jacobs round out the board. First of all, it's ridiculous that a local asset like this reports to the governor instead of local leaders, but there's a reason: a fun scandal involving Skyline Restaurants owner Champ Williams, hidden Kruggerands and lots of corruption back in the late 70's. It's probably time to bring control back (OUC is the example of how effective the City's authorities can be when they want to), but that's not likely to happen anytime soon.

 

Now, either Buddy or Teresa could prod GOAA to do a better job with the income-producing properties surrounding Herndon. Teresa really has no dog in that fight - her base is Dr Phillips and if downtown burned tomorrow, she wouldn't much care. Buddy certainly could (and we all know that what Buddy wants, Buddy gets). Buddy, however, as we've talked about endlessly here, really could care less about the aesthetics and details of Orlando's neighborhoods. If GOAA announced they needed $100 million for a new terminal tomorrow, Buddy would be your guy. Everyday nitty-gritty improvements - it's not his thing.

 

The only way to replace Herndon would be if there were a spot just as convenient for The Powers That Be, and there isn't one (can you imagine the NIMBY howl if you dared announce such a thing?)

 

One fine day, when we elect our next mayor, if we concentrate on moving past Buddy's big projects and get back to the days where someone actually believes we need to live up to the name "The City Beautiful," we need to have the legislative delegation bring GOAA control back home. Then, we can encourage much better development of Herndon's periphery. It might also be prudent to take a look at requirements for the airport's infrastructure (we can do better than Butler buildings). Also, besides the park that recently reopened (kudos to the City for getting around to that), is there more of the empty land on the east side that can be repurposed?

 

Orlando's fortunate to have such a close-in general aviation facility - it's a great selling feature for our downtown. We can, however, and should demand that what the public sees everyday be tidied up. 

I agree with everything Spenser said. The surrounding area needs to be cleaned up, but the airport should stay. It is an asset to downtown and is a great selling point. 

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BTW the Orlando CSA (inclusive of Daytona Beach) is served by 7 airports: 3 international airports and 4 municipal airports.  I think the area could lose 1, especially in the heart of the city.

Oh, I think there's even more: 

 

Intl: DAB, OSI, MCO;

Municipal: Orlando Executive, Kissimmee Gateway, Ormond Mun., NSB Mun., Deland Mun., Leesburg Mun., Orlando-Apopka Airport, 

 

Too bad flying is so expensive; there are so many choices dotting the metro.

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Are there examples, past or recent, of how the Executive airport has been a selling feature for downtown or the city in general?  It seems, if anything, that MCO, Sanford, and Orlando-Apopka have benefited from expansion and investment over the years while the Executive airport has remained relatively under the radar.

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^^

I don't know, but if it's the main cause of that height restriction, then it better...

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The fact that we don't have a single helipad, or rooftop helipad (exclude hospitals) in downtown makes the executive airport a necessity for corp. bigshots. The only helipad I know of is the one on top of the Amway Center parking garage. I've seen Rich Devos fly in his private helicopter before a big game and land it right on top of it, that's the way people with $$$ like to travel, and that's what makes the airport so important to downtown Orlando. Being able to land in your private jet and be minutes from downtown is a huge plus. In the future, it would be nice to see helipads included in the new police station, magic entertainment complex, and any new major office building.

Edited by truebluecfl

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The fact that we don't have a single helipad, or rooftop helipad (exclude hospitals) in downtown makes the executive airport a necessity for corp. bigshots. The only helipad I know of is the one on top of the Amway Center parking garage. I've seen Rich Devos fly in his private helicopter before a big game and land it right on top of it, that's the way people with $$$ like to travel, and that's what makes the airport so important to downtown Orlando. Being able to land in your private jet and be minutes from downtown is a huge plus. In the future, it would be nice to see helipads included in the new police station, magic entertainment complex, and any new major office building.

 

London, home of Arab oil magnates, Russian oligarchs, an army of hedge fund managers, a royal family, and 8 million other people manages to make due with one licensed heliport:

 

http://www.airportsinternational.com/2012/05/heliport-takes-record-bookings/8362/barclays-london-heliport-2012

 

As far as I can see (its a few blocks from where I live), most of the traffic is from chartered thrill flights down the Thames at 250 GBP a pop.  

 

I'm still struggling to see how Orlando's elite (or potential elite) could see the executive airport as an indispensable asset, given the number of municipal airports in the area.  Meanwhile, I believe the Pritzker family paid $20 million for the NTC property in the 90's.  The price was so low due to the amount remediation work needed on the site, and Orlando was keen to get the site onto the tax rolls.  Let's say a developer paid $50-100 million for ORL.  Those funds could be used for, say, Orlando's share of a starter light rail system from downtown to the new development, and the additional property taxes could be used to subsidize the operating costs.  That sounds to me like a better use of the asset.

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Baldwin Park came about because of a decision made far away from Orlando - by the base closure commission in the 1990s to slim down defense spending after the Cold War. The Pritzkers, with the help of former Mayor Bill Frederick and others, took advantage of a then widely held belief that NTC Orlando might sit there for years in a bureaucratic maze (not an unrealistic assumption, given the results of previous military installation closures) as the buildings declined (not unlike what's happening in the downtown core) and resulting in further degradation of property values in the area.

 

The result was pretty much a win-win for everyone, although there has been grousing for years that Mayor Glenda Hood allowed the Pritzkers and their partners to substantially underbid what the property really was worth. IMHO, hindsight is 20-20; at the time, most were grateful for a quick resolution of a potential problem.

 

The bottom line: Baldwin Park happened  because of an initial event outside of the control of anyone locally (had there been a choice in the matter, NTC Orlando would still be operational, but Orlando had less political clout than Chicago did, even though its facilities were newer and generally superior to Great Lakes). In a previous round of base closings, former Congressman Bill McCollum crowed about how "he had saved our Navy base."

 

There is no one anywhere in Orlando or Orange County's power structure I know of who wants Herndon Airport (ORL) replaced. GOAA doesn't want it to happen, the movers and shakers don't want it to happen (they like it being there) and there's no one like the federal government  from outside interested in compelling such a change. I think I can safely say that, in my lifetime, the airport isn't going anywhere.

 

Now that we have communicators (cell phones) and replicators (3-D printers), it may be that transporters will be next. If so, then the need for the airport may change and I'll be proved wrong. Until then, I welcome anyone to show me any evidence of a movement for its closure.

Edited by spenser1058

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Baldwin Park came about because of a decision made far away from Orlando - by the base closure commission in the 1990s to slim down defense spending after the Cold War. The Pritzkers, with the help of former Mayor Bill Frederick and others, took advantage of a then widely held belief that NTC Orlando might sit there for years in a bureaucratic maze (not an unrealistic assumption, given the results of previous military installation closures) as the buildings declined (not unlike what's happening in the downtown core) and resulting in further degradation of property values in the area.

 

The result was pretty much a win-win for everyone, although there has been grousing for years that Mayor Glenda Hood allowed the Pritzkers and their partners to substantially underbid what the property really was worth. IMHO, hindsight is 20-20; at the time, most were grateful for a quick resolution of a potential problem.

 

The bottom line: Baldwin Park happened  because of an initial event outside of the control of anyone locally (had there been a choice in the matter, NTC Orlando would still be operational, but Orlando had less political clout than Chicago did, even though its facilities were newer and generally superior to Great Lakes). In a previous round of base closings, former Congressman Bill McCollum crowed about how "he had saved our Navy base."

 

There is no one anywhere in Orlando or Orange County's power structure I know of who wants Herndon Airport (ORL) replaced. GOAA doesn't want it to happen, the movers and shakers don't want it to happen (they like it being there) and there's no one like the federal government  from outside interested in compelling such a change. I think I can safely say that, in my lifetime, the airport isn't going anywhere.

 

Now that we have communicators (cell phones) and replicators (3-D printers), it may be that transporters will be next. If so, then the need for the airport may change and I'll be proved wrong. Until then, I welcome anyone to show me any evidence of a movement for its closure.

 

The initial question was not about whether or not there is a possibility for closing the airport (anything is possible); the question for the forum is whether it should be closed and redeveloped. My position, from a cursory analysis, is that the residents of the city would benefit much more from a redevelopment.  Most of the opposing arguments have defended the airport for intangible economic development reasons, casting it as a "feather in the cap" for civic leaders trying to attract new business to the area, and retain existing business.

 

I remember when Glenda Hood and other local leaders mourned the loss of the NTC initially, due to its impact on the local economy and perceived prestige of an economic asset.  In hindsight, 21 years later, most would argue that it was a blessing in disguise.  I believe the Executive Airport contributes to the blight of the area, and provides a massive opportunity to expand and reshape the the urban environment of Orlando.  A major gateway into the city for people coming from the east is populated with a considerable number of vacant retail structures and generally unattractive surroundings; a monument to civic leaders asleep at the wheel.  It hardly instills the civic pride that well-planned and well-constructed cities provide.  

Edited by jliv
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^^

I think they should focus on redeveloping the area west of I-4 and east of 441.  there's a lot of unused space that can use development and also redevelopment.

 

Orlando Executive is already being used as an airport.  I don't think it contributes to blight in that area.  I think it's a product of proximity to Union Park and the 436 corridor etc., unless those are a byproduct of proximity to the airport- I don't know.  However, Fashion Sqare is being redeveloped.  The Petsmart plaza at Maguire & 50 was redeveloped a few years ago with HH Gregg et al.  I also think Sprint opened up a new store and a mattress company across from Fashion Square.  As for that older plaza where there is a branch of the public library, that's older and I don't know what's vacant there or not.  I don't go through that corridor every day.

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^^

I think they should focus on redeveloping the area west of I-4 and east of 441.  there's a lot of unused space that can use development and also redevelopment.

 

Orlando Executive is already being used as an airport.  I don't think it contributes to blight in that area.  I think it's a product of proximity to Union Park and the 436 corridor etc., unless those are a byproduct of proximity to the airport- I don't know.  However, Fashion Sqare is being redeveloped.  The Petsmart plaza at Maguire & 50 was redeveloped a few years ago with HH Gregg et al.  I also think Sprint opened up a new store and a mattress company across from Fashion Square.  As for that older plaza where there is a branch of the public library, that's older and I don't know what's vacant there or not.  I don't go through that corridor every day.

Sprint took the old Payless spot.  Really the area around the mall is redeveloping nicely.  GFS and Wawa are going in west of Bennett, DD just opened up a few years ago.  Burger King has been redeveloping all their stores and that one is about due.  East of Bennett? Well AAA just moved out, KFC closed, Solantic left, Michael's left, Sports Authority moved, the theater has been going through multiple owners, Party City moved to the mall, and the old Circuit City was just recently demolished.  Best Buy and Sweet Tomatoes are the only steady places still open East of Bennett.

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^^

I think they should focus on redeveloping the area west of I-4 and east of 441.  there's a lot of unused space that can use development and also redevelopment.

 

While the area around the "Creative Village" is suited for affordable housing and government/educational buildings at this point, I'll be surprised if any private-sector developers step in to build office and retail in the next 5 years.  It will take major economic development coups for the ultimate build-out to resemble anything like the original vision.  Beyond that, it's mostly light-industrial and low-income housing to OBT, which can be revitalised but would need considerable government infrastructure investment.  Not to mention, a considerable exercise of eminent domain powers would need to be invoked by the city.  An airport redevelopment would be different:  there are 1,055 acres under public ownership in the area, not counting the GOAA land fronting SR 50 which was developed in the 1980's with the Colonial Promenade and restaurant out-parcels.  The acres are surrounded by desirable residential areas that would ensure a higher-end real estate rental and sales market. A master plan consisting of an extension of the downtown grid that currently ends at Maguire Blvd. could be implemented, with infrastructure funded by the sale of land to private interests at market rates.  Here's a quick and dirty rendering:

 

 
Rendering with a potential LRT/Streetcar line added:
 

 

Edited by jliv

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