Santa Monica Airport is expected to shutter at the end of 2028, which would mark the culmination of a decades-long battle between the City of Santa Monica and the Federal Aviation Administration. While that debate will continue to play out over the next 11 years, what is more certain is that the existing Airport Park is currently on track to quadruple in size.
One year ago, a 12-acre section of the airport along Bundy Drive was taken out of operation due to the expiration of a 30-year agreement between Santa Monica and the FAA, which had required aircraft parking along the southern perimeter of the facility. Santa Monica immediately began looking to fold this property into Airport Park, a four-acre green space with features such as a dog park and a soccer field.
Conceptual plans presented last year by architecture firm Rios Clementi Hale Studios offered three potential layouts for the expanded green space, all of which called for additional sports fields and parking. Based on a notice of preparation that began circulating last week, it appears that the City has opted for a variation of the option known as "Flight Path."
A site plan shows that the 12 acre expansion will yield two regulation sized soccer fields, as well as a multi-purpose grass area, 60 community garden plots, a sports track, three pickleball courts, table tennis tables, new fitness equiment, bleachers, restrooms, concessions and a 128-car parking lot. Elevation plans show that the park's grade would slope upwards toward Bundy Drive and the airport property, buffering it from surrounding uses.
Additional information will be made available at a public scoping meeting 6:00 to 7:00 pm on Tuesday, March 21 at Santa Monica College's Bunday Campus, Room 239.
In the more distant future, the nonprofit organization Airport2Park endeavors to transform the entire Santa Monica Airport property into a public park.