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Long Island News

Long Island MacArthur Airport Expanding

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Long Island MacArthur Airport is expanding in order to meet federal safety standards and to attract more passengers, but a former Suffolk County commissioner for economic development says the planned expansion won’t significantly increase air traffic.

MacArthur Airport Commissioner Shelley LaRose-Arken says construction on a new aircraft rescue and firefighting facility will begin by November and a runway expansion is planned to start by 2018.

“There’s a lot of great things happening to the airport. We’re seeing the number of passengers increase.”

But Martin Cantor, the director of the Long Island Center for Socio-Economic Policy, says that MacArthur has to focus on attracting corporate customers, not tourists, to significantly increase the amount of passengers.

“Long Island is a very inconvenient tourist destination because the assets that you need to attract that new delta of tourists aren’t here.”

Islip Town Supervisor Angie Carpenter says the town is developing a plan to promote business travel to MacArthur.