Schrodinger’s Spaceport: Is Camden County’s Controversial Project Dead or Alive?

Spaceport Camden launch complex (Credit: Camden County)

Union Carbide Corporation (UCC) says there is no longer a deal to sell 4,000 acres to Georgia’s Camden County for a spaceport after voters overwhelming rejected the project. But, the county disagrees. The Associated Press reports:

“As a result, there is no longer an Option Agreement in existence between the County and UCC, and UCC does not intend to convey the property to the County pursuant to the prior Option Agreement,” said the statement, emailed to The Associated Press by Union Carbide spokesman Tomm Sprick.

Steve Howard, Camden County’s government administrator, provided a statement from the county’s lawyers insisting the deal isn’t over.

“Union Carbide most certainly has a contract with Camden,” the statement said. “The County has indicated that it is ready, willing and able to close. We expect Union Carbide to honor its contractual commitments.”

Camden County received permission from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) last December to launch small satellite from the planned spaceport site. Opponents, who are concerned about safety and skeptical about the projected economic benefits, gathered enough signatures to force a referendum on the project. Seventy-two percent of votes cast were opposed to the project.

County officials ignored the vote and continued to pursue the project. The county is attempting to have the referendum declared invalid by the Georgia Supreme Court. A hearing has been scheduled for Aug. 23.