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SSMMA Hosts Briefing for South Suburban Airport Bill (HB 2531)

The South Suburban Mayors and Managers Association, along with the Chicago Southland Chamber of Commerce, and the Chicago Southland Economic Development Corporation held an exclusive briefing on Thursday, July 27th with key regional leaders to showcase how the South Suburban Airport (SSA) could be the first environmentally carbon neutral “green” airport in the nation when it comes to fruition.

Airport design and construction experts Paul Heitman and Paul Ahern shared insights into new aviation technologies and discussed how utilizing solar lighting, geothermal heating, battery-powered ground vehicles, electric drones, and environmentally sustainable practices could result in a carbon-free “net-zero” airport.

“We’ve known a South Suburban Airport will create thousands of temporary and permanent jobs, strengthen our economy, and leverage the region’s transportation assets,” said SSMMA President Ron Gardiner, “but today we heard from experts on how our region can plan for, and advance, an environmentally sustainable “green” state of the art South Suburban Airport that will be a true win-win for Illinois”.

Yesterday’s panel emphasized how environmentally friendly construction will be used to build a cargo-oriented airport as called for in House Bill 2531, the South Suburban Airport bill, approved in Springfield this spring in a bipartisan fashion by legislators across the State. This bill expands the permissible types of airport development to include cargo and freight shipment facilities that could meet domestic and global e-commerce shipment demands. It also requires the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) to commence a prequalification process to identify potential developers to develop, finance, construct, and manage the South Suburban Airport.

SSMMA Legislative Chairman Rick Reinbold urged meeting attendees to take action. “It’s time for the South Suburban Airport bill, HB 2531— which sits on Governor Pritzker’s desk as we speak— to be signed into law,“ Reinbold stated. “The SSA will not only enable the private sector to create huge employment opportunities in the diverse Southland for the first time since our steel and manufacturing base began downsizing half-a­ century ago, but it can be done meeting the environmental standards that our region demands.” He added, “Contact the Governor’s Office and urge that he sign HB 2531 today.”

Check out SSMMA’s letter to Governor Pritzker urging signage of HB 2531 by downloading the file below. Constituents are encouraged to contact Governor Pritzker here to advocate for HB 2531 signage.

South Suburban Airport Letter to Governor.7.10.23 vfm (1)
Download PDF • 151KB


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