Local and transient pilots are urged to study the Juneau, Alaska, sectional aeronautical chart for enhancements that highlight important safety factors for general aviation operations.
The unique combination of terrain and weather at Alaska’s capital city puts airliners, air-tour aircraft, and other GA traffic all in close proximity. Compliance with the operating procedures now outlined on the chart headed off the prospect for upgrade of the Juneau airspace to Class C and assures safe operations in high-density traffic locations.
Addressing concerns raised by airlines, the FAA published on the chart that became effective in April 2011 modifications emerging by consensus from two multi-day meetings with up to 40 participants from the agency and industry in November 2010 and January 2011. The FAA also amended letters of agreement with commercial operators. Commercial air-tour operators conduct many flights in the Juneau area during the busy summer tourism season.
Enhancements of the current Juneau sectional aeronautical chart include a 1:150,000-scale graphic depicting the Juneau high-density traffic area. It identifies numerous visual checkpoints, recommends altitudes to be flown in different areas, depicts arrival and departure routes for the terminal area for jet aircraft, and provides common traffic advisory frequencies for VFR aircraft in the charted area.
AOPA’s Juneau Airport Support Network volunteer Pete Carlson, who also serves as a Regional Director for the Alaska Airmen’s Association, attended the meetings of the FAA and airspace users, helping to find a solution that worked for all. Other plans that had been under consideration included establishment of Class C airspace at Juneau or changes to its Class D airspace.
“The positive outcome mitigates the need for airspace changes and improves safety for all airspace users,” he said.