How Donald Trump’s ‘Winter Whitehouse’ Mar-a-Lago Is Destroying Florida’s Airports
With our first billionaire president in office, who seems to live by the seat of his pants, he has called his Mar-a-Lago estate on the Palm Beach island his “winter Whitehouse,” which should give an image as for what’s to come.
As anyone who has ever been caught in traffic whenever the president was in town will know, it automatically kills everything within a fifty-mile radius around it. For example, I live in Palm Beach, near Fort Lauderdale, but on only one occasion when president Obama was visiting some event in Fort Lauderdale, I-95, the highway running north and south along the entirety of the east coast, was completely shut down for around two hours. My travel time to get home from where I was on the highway was originally around thirty minutes, but due to the president, it took me around two and a half hours.
Similarly, the traffic in the skies suffers much the same outcome. South Florida is a hotbed of air travel. From skydivers to commercial jets, the airspace is a madhouse of traffic from several thousand different companies operating at any one given time. But due to restrictions set by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), many small businesses will likely collapse under the severe weight of those restrictions.
Airports Director, Bruce Pelly, said in a statement that based off of the number of projected visits by president Trump to his Mar-a-Lago estate, it is estimated that Aircraft Services, a company operating out of Lantana Airport, a small airport housing mostly flight schools and airplane mechanics, will lose around two-million dollars yearly.
Mark R. Baker, the president of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA), which represents nearly 350,000 pilots, said that without the restriction, it could “account for a local economic output exceeding $1 billion, create over 8,000 jobs, and have a total payroll of $290 million.” He also said that although the pilots understand the security risk, president Trump should take this information into consideration.
The problem that arises with this specific issue, is that unlike all other presidents before him, none were ultra-rich like he is. And so, many prior presidents owned a home in a typically more obscure and out of the way location. But with president Trump, his Mar-a-Lago estate is smack in the middle of the busiest location in all of Palm Beach, both from the air and land. The airspace that he will affect when living there will disrupt every single flight that would ever have to pass through South Florida, in some circles the airspace he will be affecting is commonly known as the “Atlantic highway.”
Special thanks to The Palm Beach Post for obtaining the information from a county commission workshop.