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"Rialto airport relocation plan moves forward"
- From: "Stephen Irwin" <stepheni@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
- Date: Thu, 19 Apr 2007 04:03:27 -0500
Thursday, April 19, 2007
Rialto airport relocation plan moves forward
By MASSIEL LADRÓN DE GUEVARA
The Riverside (CA) Press-Enterprise
Plans to close Rialto Municipal Airport and move its tenants to make way for
a 1,500-acre master-planned community advanced Tuesday with City Council
approval of a relocation plan.
The closure plan and the elimination of the Airport Commission were approved
by the Rialto City Council, which hopes to develop the property and bring
more revenue to the city, said Robb Steel, economic development director.
The relocation process for the 127 tenants will begin six months after
approval of the project's environmental-impact review, specific plan and
development agreement, which is expected to occur in November, records show.
Eligible businesses and individuals will be offered referrals to suitable
replacement locations, help in preparing claim forms for relocation payments
and other assistance to minimize the impact of the move, the plan states.
Every displaced person is eligible to be reimbursed as much as $10,000 for
moving and related costs under the plan.
The Renaissance Rialto project is expected to be built on the airport
property along Interstate 210, west of Ayala Avenue. The land would be
divided among residential, industrial, commercial and public uses, Steel has
Officials want to remove the north/south runway, close the existing main
runway and convert the parallel taxiway -- the airport's original runway --
as soon as possible to release more property on the north side for
development, Steel said.
The Renaissance Rialto developer, Lewis-Hillwood LLC, is expected to pay
about $120 million for the airport property, Steel said. The cost of
removing hazardous waste, demolishing runways and relocating tenants will be
deducted, he has said. Estimated relocation costs are $7 million, records
Councilman Ed Scott said he is glad closure and relocation are getting under
"We still need to do some negotiating with some of the tenants, including
the sheriff's aviation division, and we are committed to meeting with them,"
Scott said in response to some concerns expressed by sheriff's officials
during Tuesday's council meeting.
Capt. Toby Tyler of the Aviation Division of the San Bernardino County
Sheriff's Department said the department had not had any communication about
the airport's closure since March 2006, other than a general tenants
"We don't want to obstruct closure of the airport. We just want to know when
something will be built in San Bernardino so we can move there," Tyler said
Steel said city officials will meet with sheriff's aviation officials
"It was brought to our attention that they feel we haven't had enough
dialogue about the airport's closure and relocation plan, and we are going
to address that," he said.
Councilman Joe Baca Jr. said he is confident the situation will be
Baca has said the airport property once developed will generate $2 million
to $3 million per year in revenue for the city. Build-out is expected to
take at least 10 years, he has said.
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