New FAA Flight Paths Study – 2022

Sky Harbor at Night

 

Update

The first working group meeting was held on May 3-5. Participants included representatives from the FAA, the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA), American Airlines, Southwest Airlines, and Aviation Department staff.  

The FAA has shared that the working group will reconvene in October, to continue the process and discuss proposed procedure designs to increase safety and efficiency within the Sky Harbor approach control airspace.

The FAA has committed to the Aviation Department that it will conduct a fully transparent process, and that communities around the airport will be able to comment on any draft proposals during the required environmental review process. This information has also been posted on the FAA’s community engagement website

Background

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has advised the City of Phoenix Aviation Department that it is planning to convene a working group in early May to start the process of studying potential changes to some arrival and departure flight paths serving Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. According to the FAA, the goals of this study are to improve efficiency and enhance safety.  

The FAA has sole jurisdiction and authority to initiate and conduct this process.  The FAA has confirmed that this will be a new process, independent of the completed implementation agreement in place with the City of Phoenix.  Technical working group meetings will start in May to identify potential airspace goals.  Other stakeholders in these early meetings will include airlines and Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport staff.  The working group meetings may lead the FAA to include technical stakeholders from other communities and/or satellite airports as identified adjustments are determined to potentially impact them.

After the design activities are completed, the FAA is expected to notify the public of its intent, and provide an opportunity for feedback.  An outreach plan to gather this feedback is being developed. Information about the FAA’s outreach process is available here: https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/community_engagement/. Visit the FAA’s Community Engagement (PHX) for updates.

The FAA has assured the City of Phoenix Aviation Department that the working group will not consider any changes impacting western departures over historic preservation areas, other noise sensitive areas in the City and/or any of the flightpaths at issue in the City’s successful litigation of the FAA’s flightpath changes in 2014.

The City of Phoenix Aviation Department is committed to keeping the community informed during this process, and will update this webpage whenever new information is available. Community members are welcome to email skyharbor@phoenix.gov with any questions or to request to be notified when this page is updated.

 

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