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Fagalii Airport reopening gets mixed reaction

Fagalii airport
Source: Samoa Observer

Pago Pago, AMERICAN SAMOA — The airport at Fagalii is all set to open for the third time in two decades amid nearby residents expressing mixed emotions at having small aircraft flying overhead again.

Most of the locals who live within the vicinity of the aerodrome had grown accustomed to the landing and taking off of the planes over the years, which have been linking American Samoa and Samoa for decades. 

There are a few nearby local shops that foresee the reopening of the airport translating to increased business opportunities. A local shop owner, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said that this would mean more business but at the cost of giving up their peace and quiet. 

He said they have grown to enjoy the quiet life in their village after the previous Administration shut the airport in December 2019. 

A neighboring shop owner, who is in her late years, is happy that they will open up. However, she has had some bad experiences from the smell of fumes, fuel, and noise.

“Every morning they would start their engines and leave it on for a long time, the smell and fumes would drift and get carried over to our side,” she said.

Despite having to constantly scold the pilot from the other side of the road, she knows that the village council and the Government have their best interest at heart and it would be good for her business.