Nick McWilliams reporting – With the Federal Aviation Administration pushing for more safety at airports like Harry Clever Field, the New Philadelphia airport commission is not budging with a Delaware Drive issue.

A proposed plan by the FAA’s Detroit office proposes shortened runways at the local airport, along with the possible removal of Delaware Drive, which council member and commission chairperson John Zucal first discussed back in January.

Zucal gave an update on the discussions with representatives, adding the city will not agree to close the road that runs parallel to much of the airport.

“We still continue to take the position that we are not prepared to close Delaware Drive, in any capacity. And we are certainly not about [relocating] graves. That continues to be our stance. How it impacts us as we move forward with the FAA is to be determined, but there is going to be further discussion with the Detroit office in regard to that.”

Due to the close proximity of Calvary Cemetery and East Avenue Cemetery, the FAA also suggested the relocation of a number of graves located close to one of the runways.

The asphalt airstrip entry point for pilots is located just northeast of the intersection of Skinner Lane and Delaware Drive, which is of likely concern for the FAA.

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