June 13, 2013
By Benét J. Wilson
The FAA has announced it will eliminate part of a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) published last August for the establishment of Class D airspace at Alaska’s Bryant Army Airfield, saying additional information is needed after issues were raised in public comments.
“The FAA was responsive to what users had to say about the overly complex design originally proposed,” said Melissa McCaffrey, AOPA senior government analyst of air traffic services. “AOPA appreciates that the FAA listened to concerns and is being responsive to user needs."
The agency published a supplemental proposal to modify the NPRM to establish Class D airspace at Bryant AAF. The FAA stated additional information is needed to adequately address concerns that were raised in comments regarding a portion of controlled airspace east of Glenn Highway from the surface to 1,600 feet msl and will eliminate this part of the original design from the proposal.
The NPRM, which cited increased complexity and volume of air traffic, pointed out a need for an overall review of the congested airspace, in which numerous civilian and military airports and special-use airspace areas are situated, said McCaffrey. The goal should be airspace simplification, she added.
“This area is heavily transited by GA aircraft, so it is concerning that the proposed Class D airspace at Bryant AAF would add complexity to an already compound airspace area,” said McCaffrey.
Members are urged to submit comments, due July 24, to: U.S. Department of Transportation Docket Operations, M-30, West Building Ground Floor, Room W12-140 1200 New Jersey Avenue SE, Washington, DC, 20590. Comments also can be submitted electronically. Identify FAA Docket No. FAA-2012-0433 and Airspace Docket No. 12-AAL-5 at the beginning of your comments.
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