Federal Grants Determine What Can Be Done With Coleman A. Young International Airport

Under an unprecedented agreement between the city of Detroit and the state of Michigan, enacted to solve the city’s dire financial crisis, many of Detroit’s assets are being reviewed as either potential money makers or unnecessary financial drains.

Early conversations and drafts of the consent decree included the privatization and sale of City Airport,renamed Coleman A. Young International in 2003, which is neither a financial boom nor burden for the city.

But the airport has received almost ten million dollars in federal grants in the last decade, which could prevents a sale or closure from from ever happening.

That’s the way the Federal Aviation Administration sees it.

Tony Molinaro handles public affairs for the FAA He tells WDET’s Travis Wright that $9.7 million in federal grants comes with assurances that, in effect, protect the site from becoming anything but an airport.

FAA spokesperson Marcia Adams is the point-person involving privatizing airports nationwide.

She says the FAA has not been involved in a single conversation regarding any potential sale or closure of Coleman A. Young International. Adams went on to explain that it would be incredibly difficult and complex to do such a thing, especially under a recent federal plan to reorganize the thousands of small airports in the country in an effort to reduce congestion at major airports like Detroit Metro.