Shops, restaurants and bars, Long Island wines and a radio station at MacArthur Airport? Wow! ["Lauding MacArthur upgrades," News, Dec. 5] But best of all is the new vehicle transport service with weekly auto shipping to Florida
However, while all of these services improve Islip's airport, what MacArthur really needs is: airlines, flights, destinations, competitive pricing and more nonstop flights.
On a recent trip to Phoenix from Long Island, I had a four-hour layover in Baltimore, which doubled my travel time. Unacceptable.
Hopefully, the powers that be will realize what it will really take to make the airport take off.
Delores Plunkett, Sayville
It's all well and good that Islip is upgrading Long Island MacArthur Airport by adding a restaurant, bar and grill, retail shops, etc. But the fact is that very few people other than those flying in and out of the airport will visit those shops, because of the airport's outrageous short-term parking fees.
And let's face it, MacArthur is not a layover airport. Not many people hang around there because they are waiting for a connecting flight. Hence, little additional business for the shops.
What Islip officials could do is dedicate a portion of their underused parking area for shoppers and diners. Or perhaps they could use a voucher system to allow people fee-free parking for browsing, shopping and eating at the airport.
Bill Ciesla, Northport
Get rid of NYC horse carriages
In "Don't let New York lose part of its charm" [Editorial, Dec. 3], Newsday urged the New York City Council to vote no on a bill to ban horse-drawn carriages. The argument seems to rest solely on the assumption that residents and tourists alike appreciate the presence and tradition of these carriages.
While tradition is a strong force in NYC, it is not reason enough to keep an outdated and unnecessary convention alive. If you have recently experienced these carriage rides, as I have, you will understand what a trip on one is like.
After you pay the exorbitant fee to take a ride, you are downwind of some unpleasant smells as you sit in gridlocked traffic inhaling exhaust fumes -- which cannot be good for you or the horse.
You huddle with your sweetheart under a questionable, dirty blanket as you worry if the carriage will give way and fall over at any moment. Your trip is a far cry from the Cinderella-esque vision everyone has of a carriage ride through the park.
New York is a city of innovation. We can turn an abandoned above-ground rail line into the successful High Line park. We see something that can stand for improvement, and we do it. If horse carriages leave a vacancy, it can be filled by an new innovation, one that becomes an NYC tradition for generations to come.
Change is good, so let's get rid of the carriages.
Kyle Berube, Holtsville
Graffiti shouldn't meet with praise
I read the positive comments made by an art student who said she believes that graffiti which defaces buildings and the like is "fun, colorful, and expressive," and that it isn't vandalism, "it's an art form" ["Where the tags are," News, Dec. 8]. She doesn't know right from wrong.
Anyone who defaces private property without permission is committing a crime.
My advice to these artists is to use only their own homes, interior walls or canvasses to express their artistic talents.
Gregory M. Gusew, Lake Ronkonkoma
County should dodge this responsibility
Interesting story about the luxury senior housing complex in Melville ["Sewer spat," News, Dec. 10].
The residents chose to buy and live there and knew of the charges for their sewage treatment plant. Now they want the county to take over because of the expense of operating it. What a great idea!
If it works for them, maybe I can have my cesspool taken over by the county and have everyone share in the annual cost of having it pumped out. It could be the county's 27th sewer district!
John T. Golden Jr., East Northport