3rd Runway a go?

style="float: right; margin-bottom: 10px; font-weight: 600;"Mon 16th Jul, 2012

All good things come in threes, just not the third runway at the Munich airport.

Or that was the impression a month ago after Munich's citizens voted against the proposition to add a new runway to the two existing runways that are already in use at the Franz-Josef Strauss Airport.

The popular referendum is not getting in the way of the Minister of Finance, Markus Söder, as he claims that plans to build another runway will not be put on the backburner just yet. He insists that the decision can be overturned in the near future, so that the airport can move forward with its plans. For its supporters, the prospect of the third runway amounts to nothing less than whether Munich is a true Metropolis.

There are plenty of people who are not hoping for a reversal of the vote. Dieter Reiter (SPD) is completely against the new runway, and he is doing everything he can to keep it from becoming a reality.

Opposing sides continue to make their case, but the reality is a confused one. Were the runway built, the airport could offer both more flights and less hassle? Alternatively, should wildlife and inhabitants near the airport be protected from damage? The answers are not nearly as black and white as one might hope.  Weighing pros and cons is not easily done and neither option can tip the scales far enough in its favor. The very thought that the citizens' vote would be ignored has created a second wave of outrage in the public.

At this point, the land is protected by the results of the referendum. Nevertheless, if the campaign for the third runway is able to gain enough support, the construction to expand Munich's airport capacity will go forward.

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