Phoenix Sky Harbor
International Airport

FAA Flight Path Changes

Sky Harbor at Night

Two Flight Paths Have Returned to Pre-September 2014 Approximate Route

Effective March 29, 2018 the FAA has essentially reverted back to two former routes for aircraft that depart Sky Harbor to the west and either continue west or turn north. The routes are the first step in implementing an agreement between the FAA, City of Phoenix and historic neighborhoods northwest of downtown Phoenix, after the City and the neighborhoods sued the FAA over flight path changes. The new routes approximate the paths that were flown prior to September 2014. The FAA is conducting the environmental process on the route that departs Sky Harbor to the west and turns south. That process should be complete before May 24.

March 2, 2018: The FAA has posted an update on the process of returning westerly departures to approximately the same as they were before September 2014.

Feb. 7, 2018: The D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals issued an amendment to its original opinion in the flight paths case.

Jan. 18, 2018: Get information on when and where community workshops regarding FAA flight path changes are scheduled.

Nov. 30, 2017:
 The City of Phoenix and Historic Neighborhoods have negotiated an agreement with the FAA and filed a joint petition to engage in outreach with affected communities while temporarily returning flight paths to their original routes before developing new flight path procedures. Read the Aviation Department press release on the agreement.  Read the FAA's press release

Nov. 30, 2017:
 Historic Neighborhoods Join to Propose Resolution to FAA Flight Path Lawsuit.

Nov. 13, 2017: The U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals granted the FAA’s second motion to extend the deadline to file petitions for rehearing to November 30, 2017.

Oct. 12, 2017: In response to the Federal Aviation Administration extension request filed Oct. 6, the Court has extended the petition deadline to Nov. 16, 2017.

Oct. 11, 2017:
In response to the Federal Aviation Administration extension request filed Oct. 6, the City has filed a letter agreeing to not oppose the extension.

Oct. 6, 2017: The Federal Aviation Administration filed a motion with US Court of Appeals in Washington D.C. for a 30-day extension. During this period, the City has agreed to meet with FAA to explore options to provide noise relief, maintain airspace safety, and ensure proper study of flight path impacts.

Aug. 29, 2017: The US Court of Appeals in Washington D.C. has ruled in favor of the City of Phoenix in its lawsuit and historic neighborhoods’ lawsuit against the FAA over flight path changes. For additional information on the lawsuit as well as the court documents, please visit or read the press release.

On Sept. 18, 2014 the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) implemented changes in flight paths to and from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport as part of its effort to streamline departures and arrivals using NextGen satellite-based navigation. Since then, Sky Harbor has received thousands of noise complaints and questions from the community.

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