3 letters: On the proposed Cassen Park design concepts, airport runway extension

What are your neighbors talking about this week?

  • By
  • | 4:00 p.m. June 13, 2022
  • Ormond Beach Observer
  • Opinion
  • Share

Concerns with Cassen Park concepts

Dear Editor:

Recent revelations of misinformation on the airport expansion renews my anxiety about renovations to Cassen Park. A review of four incomplete, months-old concepts gives me cause for concern.

A few Cassen Park concept observations:

Don’t relocate the war memorial. It’s a historic tribute, nicely landscaped and centrally-located. Why isn’t an American flag flying there?

The bait house is being moved because it’s in an unsafe location. The safest location is the northwest corner of the park, the highest ground. Yet the preferred new location is the lowest, riskiest spot, but provides seed for the city dream of having a dining spot in the park. It immediately joins the private underwater owner, who also wants a dock or restaurant.

Adding a gazebo the size of a small house at the vacated bait house site exposes yet another example of airport-like logic. Yep, that’s right; more, bigger, louder aircraft will improve your life; and the bait house point is now safe.

Adding or relocating trees is ludicrous. There are 68 palm trees and 10 live oaks in the park on 3.8 acres.

Please no more benches, there are 60 on the dock and park water front area, most rarely used.

Don’t put a playground or plaza in the park, it’s too close to the road.

Street side parking is eliminated.

Park entrance relocated toward the red light — insanity!

Adding a white sand beach and installing astro-turf on the waterfront, requiring concrete base and a seawall. Unbelievable!

One concept adds seven gazebos, 16 feet by 16 feet, and one 20 feet by 28 feet monster gazebo. These span the entire park and block the waterfront view, which is contrary to the goal of improving the river view. The unstated purpose is to provide eating areas for the bait house cafe.

But wait, part of the concept includes removing vegetation along the waterfront to improve the view. Tear down the natural protection of the shoreline, then block the view with gazebos. More airport-like logic!

Most of that vegetation is protected by law. There are numerous red and black mangroves (documented), spartina and marsh grass, a marsh saltbush of some variety, two or three clumps of exotic palms that would be attractive if maintained, and other shrubs.

The southwest section of the park that joins the underwater private property is totally left off all concepts. What is being done there? Is the city providing access or amenities to develop the private property?

J. R. Miller

Ormond Beach

Editor's note: The Ormond Beach City Commission has not yet chosen a design concept for the park. At a Feb. 15 workshop, city staff was directed to combine elements of the four proposed concepts before putting a bid out for a professional design firm.​ The issuance of a request for qualifications for design firms was approved by the commission at its May 3 meeting via its consent agenda.

Ormond airport is not self-sustaining

Dear Editor:

This is written as an analogy!

My husband just saw my credit card bill, which says I owe $685,000 and none of that has been repaid. Needless to say, the credit card was cut up and there will be no further purchases on that account until all is repaid and I can provide proof of income to be self-sustaining. Suggesting taking money out of another account to continue shopping did not go over well.

Connie Colby

Ormond Beach

Citizen response

Dear Editor:

In response to "City answers questions on runway extension:"

Is a 400 ft extension to the east in the city's future plans? Yes it is. Emails received via the Freedom of Information Act between the city and FAA address exactly this: their plans for the ultimate 1,000 ft runway extension. The city stated that Phase I would be 600 feet west and Phase II would be 400 feet east since the golf course became vacant.

Can you explain the differences between B-II and C-II aircraft? Why are C-II aircraft mentioned in the draft SEA?

These C-II aircraft in the draft SEA are not small. They are medium-sized aircraft with approach speeds in miles per hour for B-II is 104.7 to 138 mph; approach speeds for C-II is 139.2 to 161.1 mph. These aircraft, cause higher minimums to correspond with the higher speeds, which you would have less time to react to a missed approach, which means not the minimum Runway Protection Zone (crash zone) of 1,000 feet the city has. C-II aircraft require at least 1,700 feet up to 2,400 feet Runway Protection Zone (safety for people on ground). The maximum takeoff weight of these C-II Aircraft listed:

  • Hawker 800: 28,000 lbs
  • Citation X: 36,600 lbs
  • Challenger 350: 40,600 lbs

And then state this is all for safety? These aircraft need more than 4,604 feet of runway.

You previously stated some properties have been identified by FDOT as having trees obstructing the approach to the existing runway.

Per recent emails from FDOT "the obstructions to the west side of airport border have not been declared an obstruction. Only obstructions are on airport  property." The city will be creating the obstruction and aircraft safety issue with the runway extension.  

The citizens need a meeting to allow the same allotted time to speak as the city to show proof of the above.

Karin Augat

Ormond Beach


Latest News


Your free article limit has been reached this month.
Subscribe now for unlimited digital access to our award-winning local news.