Ridge had no problem with Eagles stadium in Philly flight path


One of the companies trying to build a stadium in L.A. has paid former Director of Homeland Security Tom Ridge to prepare a report that finds a competing project to present an unacceptable risk of terrorism due to its presence in the LAX flight path.

Former Director of Homeland Security and former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge once arranged for the use of public money to help build a stadium in Philadelphia that, you guessed it, sits in the local airport’s flight path.

A source with knowledge of Ridge’s efforts — and apparent lack of concern — regarding the placement of the Eagles stadium has pointed out the inconsistency.  In fairness to Ridge, Lincoln Financial Field opened in 2003, which means that the wheels were in motion well before the events of September 11, 2001 significantly heightened concerns regarding the potential use of airplanes as weapons.

NFL executive V.P. Eric Grubman has said of the issue “the best approach is to look at these things with an independent eye.”  Ridge’s opinion was purchased by the non-independent and clearly biased AEG, which has been trying unsuccessfully to build a stadium in downtown L.A. for the past several years.  The NFL eventually will purchase (if it hasn’t already purchased) one or more opinions from truly independent experts.

And then the NFL will keep those opinions under wraps for as long as possible (if they’re not favorable), in order to not disrupt the momentum that flows from the current race to build a stadium in Los Angeles.

34 responses to “Ridge had no problem with Eagles stadium in Philly flight path

  1. Ridge has always been a coin-operated hack. Cut him a nice check and he’ll say anything you want.

  2. I really don’t care where or if they build this stadium but this is a load of crap with this flight path thing. There are quite a few stadiums in flight paths and no one has ever said a word about this till now. If someone decides to hijack a plane and fly it into a stadium it could happen whether the stadium is in a “flight path” or not. Last time I checked planes can make turns and don’t just fly in straight lines. Sounds like someone is trying to sabotage this project.

  3. He was paid go give a specific opinion on an LA project with no financial impact on him. There was a financial incentive to approve the Philly stadium. The concerns and limitations of being close to an airport didn’t change much at all post 9-11. Structural requirements and building materials changed somewhat but most ongoing projects were grandfathered.

  4. Hmmm, Tom Ridge, the first Director of Homeland Security. The same one who with Bush used the rainbow terror alerts to scare people.

    Also, the same one who told us to get ready by buying plenty of duct tape and plastic sheeting to protect against chemical attack. Bush said “go shopping”. How’s that bomb shelter working?

    Yeah, you can believe Tom Ridge.

  5. Sorry, there is no “In fairness to Ridge”. He sold his opinion for personal gain. He actually sold his resume as “director of homeland security” for his own personal gain. It’s obnoxious at best and unethical at worst.

  6. The first site selected for the Cards stadium in the Phoenix metro area was directly east of Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport, and in the flight path. Post 9/11 that site was unacceptable to the FAA, and the stadium ended up in Glendale instead of an industrial area on the Phoenix/Tempe city line.

  7. Ridge is a politician (former Governor of PA) turned bureaucrat(as Director of Homeland Security) turned paid consultant .. he was NEVER an analyst at Homeland Security. He never did a threat assessment! He is a talking head and a paper pusher.now using his prior position to make money selling out to anyone who pays him. For all we know the actual people who did the threat assessment (if anyone) were the creating writing staff at Marvel. OMG did he think that a bus could be used as a terrorist transport to go to the stadium? or maybe unleashing mosquitoes or how about the severe drought in California.. maybe even the extras from Walking dead may show up.. what a bunch of crap this so called “report” is!

  8. For all the cynicism expressed here — times change — the world changes — threats change.

  9. Many of these article about LA mention “one or two” teams.

    Is there REALLY a chance that Los Angeles will go from zero to two teams, taking an NFL franchise from two other cities? If not, why use that phrase so often?

  10. “…Tom Ridge once arranged for the use of public money to help build a stadium in Philadelphia that, you guessed it, sits in the local airport’s flight path.”
    Must have been color coded differently.

  11. The only flight path Ridge was looing to AEG for was the one from their bank account to his.

  12. Wow, talk about people using their political feelings to color their emotions

    The stadium in Philly was well in the works by 2001, not to mention, it’s in the same complex as every other stadium in Philly, so unless you were going to tear down the other 3, there was no added security risk

    Are we really going to pretend that there aren’t different concerns in building a major public works project than pre 2001? Really? You don’t see the difference between “having enough fuel to reach” a place, and a normal flight path? Really?

  13. Because terrorists will not stray from FAA flight paths in order to carry out their attacks. This is pathetic, shameful 9/11 scare tactics.

  14. I’m willing to give Ridge the benefit of the doubt. He was a good governor for Pennsylvania and the commonwealth of PA has had mostly bums and losers ever since he gave up his position, other than the guy who temporarily replaced him that didn’t want to run when his time was up. Tom Wolf shows some promise but its too early to tell.

  15. ..as a ex season eagle ticket holder, the scary thing about the linc is it’s built right next to a major highway with parts of the south end of the stadium fully open & exposed!….doesnt take a genius to have a van pull up on the side of the highway , open the door, and shoot a shoulder rocket launcher into the open part of the stadium.
    ..Its the stuff of crime fiction novels…..NFL NEEDS TO FIX THIS CRACK IN THIER SECURITY 1st , before worring planes.

  16. It is reasonable to assume that AEG staff wrote the opinion for Ridge. All he had to do was give it his OK and sign the paycheck that went with it.

    It’s not far fetched to assume that Ridge doesn’t even know the details of the opinion with his name on it. he has staff who review those things for him.

  17. Anybody flown in or out of Dallas-Fort Worth Int’l Airport lately? That big domed building called AT&T Stadium is definitely in the flight path south of that airport. And that stadium turned first dirt after 9/11. Who gave approval to that placement? For that matter, The Ballpark in Arlington is in the same flight line.

  18. Having spent some time in the security business, all things changed after 9-11, and acting like they didn’t is not an effective argument. Some things to consider. 1) Being in the flight path makes it harder to detect a planes ill intentions until it is too late to take action; 2) Some locations are likely venues for a Superbowl, which would be a more likely target. LA is sure to have a Superbowl; 3) New stadiums will have to take security seriously to be approved, including risk from overflights. Plans that ignore this risk will not be approved.

    Inglewood is history. They just don’t know it yet.

  19. “The road to power is paved with hypocrisy”. Hear that statement by Kevin Spacey on Netflix’s “House of Cards”, when it comes to politicians, there were never truer words spoken.

  20. grandpoopah says: Feb 28, 2015 8:31 AM

    Ridge has always been a coin-operated hack. Cut him a nice check and he’ll say anything you want.

    As do ~ALL~ consultants. They are hired by one side to bolster that sides argument, not for any potential truth. Credibility – yeah, right, and the Easter Bunny poops golden eggs too.

  21. Then change the flight path.
    That’s not going to happen. The Inglewood site is three miles from the east end of LAX’s south complex. Traffic is to the west at LAX because the prevailing winds are off the ocean. That means that flights will land from the east, flying directly over the stadium site. Aircraft don’t like to land/takeoff downwind because doing so reduces their airspeed, robbing them of lift.

    Frankly… If we’re OK with flights into LaGuardia during the US Open, Newark during Jets/Giants games (16/year), or DCA remaining open, then we should be OK with this.

  22. The stadium is right next to the highway. (I95) You can stand on the shoulder and throw a rock at it. You would think they would have put up wall or barriers along that section of highway after 911.

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