LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Times reported today that the city of Los Angeles has secretly asked for federal authority to run a commercial airport at the former El Toro Marine air base in Orange County.
The city made the request, the Times reported, despite an Orange County public vote last year to rezone the air base property as parkland.
Los Angeles officials reportedly sent a 37-page memo to the U.S. Department of Transportation, urging the department to assume control of the property and lease it to Los Angeles. Dated April 9, the memo argued another commercial airport was needed to address Southern California's shortage of air capacity, the Times reported.
The city of Los Angeles, through its Los Angeles World Airports agency, already operates Los Angeles International Airport, Van Nuys Airport, Palmdale Airport and Ontario International Airport in San Bernardino County.
John Wayne Airport, the only existing commercial airport in Orange County, is operated by Orange County. Last year, John Wayne Airport served 7.9 million passengers.