Dear Editor,

There is a storm brewing in SoHi Estates, a small, quiet community six miles northwest of Kingman. The cause? Angry residents here are up in arms about a proposed airplane landing field being slated for construction in a location that will have planes flying at very low altitudes and low speeds directly over numerous private homes. The developer of this impending disaster plans to build this runway atop a hogback ridge in a canyon that offers three steep opposing mountainside faces in dangerous proximity to any expected flight activity. Couple that with the erratic winds that plague this location and the outcome becomes horrifying. Even a small error in judgment by a pilot could lead to a flaming crash into the occupied structures below.

It is nice to see a dream planned and realized, but not at the expense of the dreams and lives of the current local residents.

This misguided and poorly thought out venture should never be allowed to get beyond the point of completed paperwork.

Aside from the very real risk of the loss of human lives and private property, as noted in the lead paragraph, there are several other factors to be considered. In order for there to be a flat surface atop the proposed ridgetop, several thousand cubic yards of rock and soil will have to be relocated in the regrading process. This relocation and regrading is very likely to alter the natural water flow of inevitable rainstorms and drainages and floodways. Since this ridge, in its entirety, sites higher than the surrounding homes and God dictates that water runs downhill, where shall the water go? Into whose yards and homes?

Then, envision the damage done by the comings and goings of the heavy construction machinery on the lightly surfaced roadways of the community. Is this developer planning to have the neighborhood roads restored to their original condition? Now, during this process of earthmoving and heavy traffic in the community, it is unavoidable that there will be copious quantities of dust blowing into the neighborhood and falling upon the residents’ properties and belongings. Then heavier than normal vehicle traffic along with a disturbing amount of project noises. Coming right along with the foregoing is the alteration and loss of the natural beauty of the area. The view of nature, as God created it, is of major importance to the people who chose to spend their lives here. While the intrinsic beauty is of great importance, the issue of damage to property values must be considered. No prospective buyer wants to look toward the mountains and see what will look very much like the raw face of a mine dump. No property owner wants to see the largest investment they have ever made shrivel because of a misguided developer’s search for prosperity.

Since I was asked by several neighbors to involve myself in this issues, I suggest that all the concerned residents of SoHi Estate call, write or make in-person visits to all the agencies responsible for review, study, planning and ultimately either the approval or denial of this planned venture. Those entities are Mohave County Development Services, Planning and Zoning and Flood Control. It is my understanding that the Federal Aviation Agency, which governs all aviation-related activity in our country, has not yet been made aware of this misbegotten proposed plan. Your tax dollars entitle you to contact the FAA and ask their position on this.

As a longtime resident of this community, I urge you to make your voice heard. Defend your rights!

Jack Hommel