AOPA said Monday it plans to challenge parts of the FAA's notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) to redesign the Class B airspace over Minneapolis/St. Paul. The agency wants to raise the ceiling from 8,000 feet msl to 10,000 feet msl. AOPA's other concern is the lack of VFR transition routes.
"The NPRM is better than it might have been," said AOPA Manager of Air Traffic Heidi Williams. "After hundreds of comments from local users and consultations with an ad hoc users' group, of which AOPA was part, the agency scaled back their original dimensions.
"But there is still room for improvement, and AOPA plans to continue working for better access for GA pilots."
The Minneapolis/St. Paul Class B airspace ceiling is currently 8,000 feet. By raising the ceiling to 10,000 feet, the FAA cuts in half the number of altitudes, both VFR and IFR, that do not have regulatory requirements for supplemental oxygen use.
The NPRM also fails to identify or implement VFR transition routes through or around the Class B, again limiting access for GA pilots.