SAN DIEGO -- A court settlement has been reached to remove hazardous waste from the old Teledyne Ryan site bordering Lindbergh Field, airport officials announced.
The agreement, struck in federal court this week, requires Allegheny Technologies-Teledyne Ryan to clean up the 44-acre parcel southeast of the runway.
The San Diego Unified Port District leases the former aerospace manufacturing site to the San Diego County Regional Airport Authority. Both agencies, along with Teledyne Ryan, signed the settlement.
Authority attorney Amy Gonzalez said the cleanup could be completed by 2010. She said the site contains polychlorinated biphenyls and other contaminants.
Teledyne Ryan, which occupied the site from 1939 to 2002, will pay the unspecified cost of the cleanup.
As part of a separate legal agreement, Teledyne Ryan funds will also be used to cover most of the cost of demolishing more than a dozen buildings on the Harbor Drive site.
The land is expected to be folded into a long-term expansion plan for busy and burdened San Diego International Airport.
Alan Bersin, chairman of the airport authority board, called the settlement welcome news because "it brings closer to fruition a constructive use of the property."
Airport planners say the land gives them badly needed breathing room. They said part of it could be used to build a wider taxiway or, in the long run, to add more terminals and other aviation operations.
The authority is preparing to craft an updated development plan for the single-runway commercial airfield.
More than 17.5 million travelers passed through the airport last year. That figure is expected to reach 25 million by 2020, according to authority studies.
Bob Maxwell of Oceanside, who serves on a regional board that is studying airport options, vowed in a forum Wednesday to do everything in his power to keep the idea alive.
The airport authority is trying to break new ground in its search for a place to build an international airport with twin, 12,000-foot runways.
Authority moves on amid recent challenges
Building a new regional airport in sparsely populated Imperial County could see that county moved from its long-standing seat in coach to first-class among Southern California power brokers.