Helipad attempts liftoff

Task force to hear plans for potential locations

Boston Herald | By Meghan Ottolini

A controversial proposal for a downtown helipad to accommodate corporate choppers for General Electric and other companies is going before a task force of city and state officials tonight — nine years after community pushback grounded earlier plans to land helicopters in Boston.

The Seaport District, Fort Point Channel and a property near Dewey Square and South Station have all been identified as potential locations, with the Seaport’s Raymond L. Flynn Marine Park seen as the most likely site. The promise of a public landing site for helicopters was a major incentive in the deal to relocate GE’s corporate headquarters to Boston.

But opposition from neighbors and community leaders promises renewed landing-zone turbulence.

“There’s no good viable spot in Boston right now,” said Laura McDonagh, a lifelong resident of South Boston, who does not want to see a helipad or heliport in the Seaport or South Boston.

McDonagh remembers the helipad that brought choppers in and out of South Boston until 1999.

“We’ll have noise pollution. We have enough problems with the airport as it is,” McDonagh said.

City Councilor Michael Flaherty said he’s heard the concern and promises to put his constituents first.

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