They lost their bid to block the birds.
The Friends of LaGuardia Airport could not prevent a waste transfer facility, which will bring flocks of seagulls near the airport, from being built.
The U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in favor of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) on Tuesday, April 9 on jurisdictional grounds rather than on the merits of the case, said Ken Paskar, president of Friends of LaGuardia.
“I’m concerned that [the] decision would have people believe that the court ruled on the merits and interpret that to mean that the transfer station is safe,” said Paskar.
The North Shore Marine Transfer station is under construction in College Point and is expected to be completed later this year. The waste transfer station is located approximately 2,206 feet away from one of the major runways at LaGuardia.
With the station expected to handle 3,500 tons of residential garbage daily, Paskar believes the station will become a “bird magnet” for seagulls looking for food, and will lead to an increase in the danger of gull strikes in the air.
Even with the court’s decision, Paskar is looking to follow other legal options, including filing a motion for re-consideration on the court.
“Friends of LaGuardia must continue its fight to protect the traveling public from the risks of bird strikes in and out of LaGuardia Airport and the greater NY Metro area because the FAA, Port Authority and the City of New York are clearly not,” said Paskar. “It’s a long shot. We’re asking the court to look at their own decision and be consistent.”
The FAA did not respond as of press time.