February 4, 2023

Just Moments

Travel Groove

The Background of Mattituck Airport

Situated in the City of Southold on Long Island’s North Fork, Mattituck Air Foundation (21N) is the area’s only privately owned, community-use airfield, occupying 18 acres and providing a single 2,200- by 60-foot asphalt runway-in this case, 1/19. Techniques to the to start with of the two magnetic headings are done above the Fantastic Peconic Bay.

Proven in 1946 after Parker Wickham returned from his Globe War II obligation of preserving Army Air Corps airplanes at his Mojave Desert foundation, he was given 16 acres of his father’s farm for an airfield just after his return property, simply because, according to his father’s assessment, “You can find no funds in potatoes, anyhow.” Before the asphalt, the “runway” was nothing more than a strip of moved grass.

Apart from its use by non-public pilots who ended up equipped to land and foundation their aircraft close to their North Fork properties, its theory, income-generating aspect was its engine repair and overhaul facility, which was offered in 1984, repurchased by relatives members 4 yrs later, and marketed once again in 1999 to Teledyne-Continental, which renamed it Teledyne-Mattituck Solutions on November 9 of that yr.

As a person of the northeast’s longest set up piston motor overhaul repair retailers, it operated as a subsidiary of Teledyne Systems, Inc., leasing the developing from the Wickham relatives. It was subsequently obtained by China-centered AVIC Global, at which time it was renamed Mattituck Services, utilizing 70 at a time in the course of its peak, or some 350 for each annum, and was responsible for at the very least a dozen engines for every week, or more than 500 for every yr.

Continental Motors listed its actions as “engine overhauls built to manufacturing facility provider tolerances manufacturing unit engine gross sales and installation experts significant powerplant and airframe upkeep propeller routine maintenance and repair service your in-stock source for pieces 50-hour, 100-hour, and once-a-year inspections inspection restore plans and gasoline process calibration and adjustments.”

For the 12 months finished on September 27, 2007, the one-strip Mattituck Airport averaged 33 actions for every day, or 12,200 per 12 months, and counted 32 single-engine based aircraft.

After Parker Wickham passed in 2011, he ceded ownership to his son, Jay, and his wife, Cyndi, who preserved and operated the airfield for five years. But a decrease in typical aviation due to its ever-mounting charges, leaving only a handful of airplanes still based mostly there, and the closing of the restore shop in the summer of 2012, left him tiny preference but to offer the airport 4 many years afterwards, an intention he announced on June 3, 2016. Mainly because of costly repairs, its fuel tanks had currently been provided to Albertson Maritime, Inc., of Southold.

The Continental Motors’ store itself, closed soon after four decades of declining common aviation business and its incapacity to continue being worthwhile with two separate facilities, was integrated with its Fairhope, Alabama, plant.

“Very bluntly, I consider each of us and Lycoming have finished a good task of pointing out the value of manufacturing unit possibilities and that has designed a contribution throughout the board to the decrease there,” in accordance to Rhett Ross, Continental Motors’ CEO. “It was not an easy determination, but that facility has been marginal for at minimum the 50 percent decade.”

All 20 remaining personnel had been laid off.

Even though the City of Southold deemed the buy price tag-prohibitive and its income potential nominal, “saviors” came in the form of Paul Pawlowski and Steve Marsh, associates in the Hudson Metropolis Personal savings Lender project on Most important Highway in Mattituck. Advising existing pilots to remove their plane by September 30 of 2016, they supposed to excavate the runway and demolish all properties, with the exception of the carriage property, the car or truck barn, and the most recent hangars, but or else continue to keep the airfield as it experienced been.