Ohio Lawmakers Propose Airports, Rail Service

Two Ohio lawmakers have proposed building new airports in the state, one to serve southwest Ohio and the other to serve Northeast Ohio.

The airports are being promoted by Rep. Paul Zeltwanger (R-Mason) and Rep. Jim Butler (R-Oakwood), who say they will attract international travel.

They also have included rail service in the broad outlines of their proposal, the details of which have yet to be written.

The representatives expect the projects to require a $10 to $15 billion investment from the federal government and businesses, such as airlines that serve Cincinnati, Dayton, Columbus, Cleveland and Youngstown.

Rep. Butler cited the proposed infrastructure investment plan being formulated by the Trump administration. The rail system would connect cities to the two airports.

The idea won a preliminary endorsement from the National Association of Railroad Passengers.

“The idea behind the airports, and connecting each to various cities by rail, is fantastic,” said NARP President Jim Mathews. “This highlights how people can use rail and air transportation together to travel; it doesn’t have to be one or the other.”

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