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OSU Trustees to Consider Concerns of Worthington
Columbus Dispatch, September 23, 2004

Worthington residents and City Council members left a meeting of Ohio State University trustees yesterday satisfied that their concerns about extending a Don Scott Field runway had been heard.

Two council members and about 15 residents dropped off scores of protest letters and a tally of noise complaints before the meeting of the trustees' fiscal affairs committee at the Longaberger Alumni House.

City Council members were surprised to learn Monday that the board of trustees was to hear a brief update on the proposed extension of the airport's north runway and the addition of several hangars.

Trustee Robert M. Duncan, who is chairman of the board's facilities planning committee, told the five-member fiscal affairs committee that residents near the airport are "deeply concerned'' and have "strong objections'' to the runway extension, which is part of the airport's master plan.

The full board will receive the citizens' noise complaints and letters and a transcript of an OSU meeting in which William A. Baeslack, dean of the College of Engineering, gave an overview of the project.

"Those board members are quite sensitive to the concerns expressed,'' Duncan told the committee.

"It's our obligation to keep our minds open . . . and to vote from a position of knowledge,'' added Trustee Karen L. Hendricks.

City Council President Louis Goorey said he was satisfied that board members got the message.

"I think (former U.S. District Court) Judge Duncan did a good job of that today.''

Worthington Council approved an emergency ordinance Monday to pay their consultants $40,000 to evaluate OSU's environmental assessment, which showed that the runway project would have no significant impact on neighbors.

The Airport Advisory Committee -- made up of airport, city and OSU officials and their consultants -- will meet Oct. 14. Several trustees, including Hendricks, expressed interest in attending.

dnarciso@dispatch.com

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