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Settlement reached in Wayne County Airport Authority lawsuit regarding Michigan Flyer drop-off location

October 23, 2014

A settlement was reached Oct. 16 for a lawsuit filed against the Wayne County Airport Authority because of their decision to move the pick-up and drop-off location for Michigan Flyer, AirRide and the SMART bus to the south end of the Ground Transportation Center (GTC) on Sept. 22.

The lawsuit was filed by paralyzed veteran Michael Harris and blind East Lansing resident Karla Hudson in response to the move, as detailed in The State News last month.

Safety was the number one concern sparking the move, as the old drop-off point in the international arrivals section was too congested to remain, Detroit Metro Public Affairs Director Michael Conway said.

The day after an agreement was reached, the parties involved issued a joint statement clarifying the settlement. The joint statement expressed a mutual satisfaction with the settlement, which involves the authority making modifications to the new drop-off area including "an indoor information counter for the service providers."

The authority also agreed to "reconfigure the motor coach parking positions, enhance bus shelters and signage to improve passenger flow, and provide an on-site phone with a direct connection to passenger assistance," according to the statement.

Some of these changes, which are subject to the court's enforcement will go into effect immediately, most by the end of the year and all before June 30, 2015, according to Michigan Flyer's October Newsletter. The zone will remain at the GTC.

Conway said that there was a lot of false information about the pick-up and drop-off zone move. He also praised the WCAA CEO Thomas Naughton for standing firm under political pressure to reverse the decision. 

"We are very pleased that we were able to prevail in this, in terms of the busses going to the Ground Transportation Center as opposed to staying at that curve, which was becoming less and less safe," Conway said. 

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