Steve Malanga, City Journal

Government's Airfields of Dreams

Despite a bleak decade for air travel—the result of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and the post-2008 economic downturn—local governments, aided by Washington, have been pouring billions of dollars into airport development and expansion. They claim that these expensive, debt-laden facilities will spur growth in economically precarious locales by attracting businesses that want more air connections. But from St. Louis to the Florida Panhandle, this Field of Dreams approach—build it, and they will come—hasn’t worked, and taxpayers have been stuck with the bill.

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