The Umstead Coalition, on behalf of the more than 4 million annual users of William B. Umstead State Park, Wake County’s Lake Crabtree County Park, American Tobacco Trail, East Coast Greenway, N.C. 2 and U.S. 1 bike routes, Black Creek Greenway, Reedy Creek Greenway, Crabtree and Neuse River Greenway, is striving to collaborate with the RDU airport to create a visionary community asset and tourism destination. We are proposing a “RDU Forest Trail Center.” This unique opportunity for our region is enabled by FAA use-regulations for airport properties and assets.
For example, the Baltimore-Washington airport’s extensive greenways support the greater Washington, D.C., area.
This visionary approach will involve diverse public/private partnerships that will provide the RDU airport with a constant sustainable and substantial revenue source (brewery, cafe, bike rentals, outdoor retail, hotel, parking, conference/educational center).
Further, we oppose the proposed quarry next to Umstead State Park with its devastating damage to water quality and quantity in Crabtree Creek, only to become a nonrevenue-producing burden in a couple decades. We also are strongly opposed to building a runway 400 feet closer to Umstead State Park, which would take park land via noise.
Dr. Jean Spooner
Chair, the Umstead Coalition