Saturday, July 19, 2008

Roanoke City Has Bargaining Chip

Roanoke Regional Airport wants to swap Countryside Golf Course land to widen runway 6 clear zone – Roanoke City should use the expiring 40 year lease on this clear zone as a bargaining chip.
On Monday a briefing will be held regarding the widening of the Runway Protection Zone (RPZ). This same RPZ has been leased to the various owners over the past 40 years for many of Countryside Golf Course fairways. Now the city is the owner of Countryside Golf Course and pays the Airport Commission about $4100 a year to lease the land owned by the Airport. The FAA, by the way, encourages leasing airport property for additional airport funding. Of course the land use must conform to FAA regulations. A golf course is specifically mentioned as an acceptable use of a RPZ.


The 40 year lease with the Roanoke Airport ends October 31, 2008. It must be extended for continued operation of the golf course. Though as my previous posts and past media coverage indicated that the Director of the Airport was going to recommend NOT renewing the lease to the Airport Commission back in 2005. At that time Meadowbrook owned the golf course.
Now that the plan to develop the property has been snuffed out with the housing boom bust it becomes imperative that the lease not expire.
This is an easy “tit for tat” on the part of Roanoke City Council and Administration – give us another 40 year lease extension and we will swap the land with you. … too easy!

Posted By Valerie Garner

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