The Sugar Land Regional Airport will soon comply with a Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) requirement to remove trees that present a hazard for aircraft approaching and/or departing north of the runway. An aviation engineering firm was hired to survey tree obstructions, which included ground and aerial surveys. Working closely with city certified arborists and the Cullinan Park Conservancy, it was determined 6.7 acres of the 754 acre Cullinan Park will need to be cleared to comply with the FAA determination and ensure public safety.
The 6.7 acres was mostly empty when the city purchased the airport in 1990. Since that time, the acreage has been overtaken with non-native invasive trees such as Hackberry, Chinese Tallows and other fast-growing species. The tree removals are unrelated to the more than $1.2 million in ongoing improvements at Cullinan Park that will provide the community with additional walking and jogging opportunities in nature, while preserving existing native hardwood trees.
To ensure the 6.7 acres will continue to benefit community members visiting Cullinan Park, the airport intends to fund a natural visual barrier comprised of low-level plantings to obscure the view between the park and airport. This project will be coordinated with the Sugar Land Parks and Recreation Department and the Cullinan Park Conservancy. No park or trail closures are anticipated as a result of this project.
Sugar Land Regional Airport is an important part of the regional economy and contributes to more than $69.9 million to the property tax rolls, funding services provided by both Fort Bend County and Fort Bend Independent School District. The airport is used by more than 100 Fortune 500 companies on a regular basis and serves the needs of the local general aviation community. The airport is self-supporting business that does not utilize general fund tax dollars.
For more information about the FAA-required public safety tree removals, visit www.sugarlandtx.gov/FAAtreeremovals.