Palomar Airport (CLD
) is the one that needs to be replaced as a commercial airport and not Lindbergh Field. Carlsbad-Palomar can go back to being a G.A. airport much like MYR
. The population of SD
North County is about 1M and is one third of the metro area with potential to grow even more. That is about 5M pax a year that migrate to either Lindbergh Field, John Wayne or LAX
not counting the few that currently use CLD
today (less than 1M I am sure).
That right there is a good base for a fledging modern airport in the north part of the county (Oceanside-Pendleton) with service to most of the major hubs across the USA. With longer runways then at SAN
, it could serve as the regions cargo and international airport. With a catchment area of nearly 6M (between both SD
and Orange Counties), major international airlines such as BA
would certainly take this airport much more seriously than Lindbergh Field. Orange County passengers would have the option of either LAX
or Oceanside-Pendleton...both airports being, for the most part, equidistant. Orange County passengers were already using the SAN
service when it existed.
Instead of trucking cargo goods from San Diego 120 miles north to LAX
thru congestion, it would certainly be a much shorter 35 mile trip to Oceanside and saving the ware and tear of LA
's freeway system. Orange County cargo forwarders would have the option of both LAX
When Lindbergh Field is fogged in, diversions do not have to go to LAX
and be bussed 120 miles south down because San Diego County will now have a good long CAT III runway at its disposal.
This airport can grow slowly starting with one 12,000 ft runway but having room to expand to another 9000 ft parallel situated almost a mile apart later on. There will be room for a large cargo complex plus a ramp for the Marine Corp to use for supplies and troop deployment. Then build a modest passenger terminal right off I-5 (complete with train station) with room to expand into a major mid-field complex as popularity grows.
Lindbergh Field (SAN
), in the mean time, can cater to domestic flying including LCCs, commuters, charters (for near by cruise ships) and business jets, however, no-one should be forced to move from there. They will just not be able to grow there. Any future growth will happen at the new airport with some airlines perhaps combining SAN
flights at the new Oceanside-Pendleton facility.
An important factor is security. The approach path would be in the southern portion of Camp Pendleton and I doubt any terrorists would want to hang out around there to try to "take down a plane". The departure path would be right over the ocean. No houses in sight! No NIMBY's!!!
All in all, I would rather convince the US Government this will work compared to the NIMBY's that will try and stop any public site including Miramar, which should become a place for affordable housing and a nice large park should it become abandoned.