Sunday, June 26, 2016

Referendum for New Airport in the West : Yes or No

So more than half of the British have voted Out for the European Union. There are many analysis going on.

Today, residents in the Nantes region is facing their own referendum:
Are you favorable of the project transferring the Airport in Nantes towards the Notre Dame Des Landes community?

And, the result is only consultative, not decisive to the government.

The idea of building a new Airport in the West to replace the current one has been on going for more than 40 years. It is met with disagreements from the farmers who would have to sell their lands to the government, ecologist, politicians... Today there is a zone that is formed, known as "Zone à défendre" (Zone to defend). People going in and out the zone are controlled from time to time. The local authorities have decided to carry it out in 2008, and the Airport was supposed to be inaugurated in 2017. However, the angry opponents to this project has held many demonstrations, some turned into violent, and the blockage to the Zone to defend is still on. Finally, the government proposed a referendum to the resident living in the region to consult their opinion.

When I first heard of this project in 2008, I thought that I would soon be able to fly from Nantes to many international destinations like Kuala Lumpur. I was surprised to see that so many people opposing this project. You see, in Asia, when this kind of project is announced, it is like the land owners have won a lotto. Suddenly, their lands values multiplied, the community evolves bringing in new opportunities and business. All we see is the money it brings in, seldom its destruction to the existing activities (farming, manufacturing...) and most importantly, its environment. Because, in these countries, what's more important is money.

This new Airport project has opened my eyes. How a project in a democratic country could be influenced and blocked by its people. I mean, if this has been in Malaysia, the airport might have been built within 3 years. And in France, it lasts for already 40 years, and we still haven't seen the end.

Well, if I have the right to vote, I would have voted YES to bring in jobs, new projects, dynamics to our communities. But I'm bias due to my background. The air and ground transports are too centralized in Paris, except flying to limited European cities, everywhere I want to go have to go through Paris. And this is just annoying.


  1. Anonymous12:14 AM

    Do you want my vote? Apparently, even though I haven't lived in France in over 15 years, my parents got my bulletin de vote :-D

  2. Anonymous6:04 PM

    here, the postponed of new airport because the bureaucracy and the money being corrupted! -__-