October 26, 2011
By Dan Namowitz
A new Class B airspace design that will go into effect Dec. 15 in Seattle, Wash., is a positive example of a process that combined creative thinking and collaboration with users to produce a successful outcome with widespread support from pilots.
The FAA has published its final rule establishing the airspace modification. Pilots are urged to study the new boundaries that will become effective with the issue of the next editions of sectional and terminal area charts that also take effect on Dec. 15.
The FAA took the needs of all airspace users into consideration, and employed outside-the-box planning to come up with a design that mitigated most general aviation concerns while using only the airspace necessary to contain arrivals and departures at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
The reduced contours of the Class B area allowed the return of some unused airspace to the National Airspace System.
AOPA supported the proposal in formal comments that expressed the association’s appreciation for the ‘commonsense approach” taken with the design.
Dan Namowitz is an aviation writer and flight instructor. He has been a pilot since 1985 and an instructor since 1990.
The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) has awarded its third annual Flight Training Excellence Awards to top flight schools and flight instructors ranked by more than 3,600 flight students who voluntarily reviewed their flight training experience through an AOPA online poll.
For decades, pilots have headed to Bay Bridge Airport in the Chesapeake Bay for scenic coastal flying and great seafood. Check it out after attending the AOPA Homecoming Fly-In on Oct. 4.
Maintenance experts have asked the FAA to clarify whether recurring inspections of Cessna 210-series aircraft can be mandated without following required rulemaking procedures.
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