Montgomery County Commissioner Bruce Castor says he opposes opening the runway at the Willow Grove Naval Air Station to civilian planes now that the military planes have been grounded. He says he arrived at his position after listening to local residents.
“The residents in the vicinity of the airport – Horsham, Hatboro, Warminster, Montgomery and the like – ought to be the ones who make the decision, so I wanted to hear from them and gauge what their concerns were. I am convinced that they are opposed to the airport, so now I am opposed to the airport.”
He says he started learning about the pros and cons after the commissioners started discussing the runway a few weeks ago, and he found that the cons greatly outweigh the pros among people living near the base.
“It was only recently that I became convinced that I was not listening to a vocal minority, but I was listening to a vocal majority.”
Castor says local residents and elected officials probably oppose re-opening the runway by about ten-to-one. Commissioners Jim Matthews and Joe Hoeffel have advocated keeping the runway for possible future use.