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Airport drops case to fend off private parking operator

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The Indianapolis Airport Authority will drop its legal battle to fend off a private-sector parking competitor, Executive Director Robert Duncan said Friday afternoon.

The airport's decision comes as a bipartisan group of City-County Councilors backed a resolution asking the quasi-government airport authority to drop its case against Midwest Logistics Partners, owner of the Ameriplex business park south of the Indianapolis International Airport.

The Metropolitan Development Commission in 2011 authorized a change in land use that would allow a 3,700-space parking lot, but the airport authority appealed that decision to the Marion Superior Court and then to the Indiana Court of Appeals.

Duncan said the authority still believes it took the correct legal position on the land-use issue, but he said it became increasingly clear that the privately run parking lot four miles from the airport terminal would become a reality. City-County Councilors indicated that even if the airport won its court battle, Midwest would probably bring forward a new request, which the council would approve, he said.

He said the pending council resolution, which has 13 co-sponsors, also played into the decision. "At the end of the day, that was a confirmation of the interest of the council in the situation," Duncan said.

At-large City-County Councilor Zach Adamson, a Democrat, said he would not pull his resolution from Monday night's agenda until Midwest Logistics confirms that the airport will withdraw its appeal. "They had two and a half years to do the right thing, and they refused to do it," he said of the airport authority. "It's criminal what they've done to this business."

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