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Regional Representation

Local Involvement Makes an Impact in Airspace Redesign Projects

Aircraft operators flying into Las Vegas or Chicago may never have heard of Keith Gordon or Mark Zakula.

However, it is largely thanks to their efforts – and other individuals like them who represent local aviation organizations – that general aviation access to the airports and airspace in those regions is being maintained, and the needs of the business aviation community are being considered as airspace is redesigned.

"It is essential to have NBAA Members – the operators who actually know the airspace best – get involved in the more than one dozen Class B and other airspace redesign efforts taking place from coast to coast," said Dan Burkhart, director of NBAA's regional programs. "We applaud the work of Keith and Mark and the many other NBAA and regional aviation group members who have stepped up to the plate and invested a great deal of their time to ensure the best possible outcomes for business aviation."

The Federal Aviation Administration, airport authorities, local governments and aviation interests are wrestling with Class B airspace redesigns currently underway in Cleveland, Dallas, Detroit, New York, Philadelphia and Seattle, with more scheduled for Cincinnati, Las Vegas, Miami, Minneapolis, Salt Lake City and Washington/Baltimore.

Bob Quinn, NBAA central region representative, credits Zakula, a captain with Duchossois Group based at Chicago Executive Airport (PWK), along with others on the Chicago Area Business Aviation Association (CABAA) ATC Committee, with forging a positive working relationship with controllers and supervisors from the local TRACON and Chicago Center, which has resulted in a Class B airspace redesign acceptable to all users, including business operators, as well as glider and air medical operators. The cooperative effort even resulted in a new visual departure from PWK, similar to the only other one in the country at New Jersey's Teterboro Airport (TEB). The name of the new departure says it all: "CABAA Visual Departure Procedure."

Senior captain Keith Gordon of Flynn-Gallagher, based at Henderson Executive Airport (HND), has worked cooperatively with all stakeholders in the Las Vegas area since 2000. As NBAA's local representative on the Las Vegas Airspace Users Council, he has worked with the other aviation stakeholders on designing area navigation (RNAV) arrivals and departures. He is now making sure that the voice of business aviation is heard during the ongoing Class B airspace redesign. "When business aviation needs something specific [in the Las Vegas area], we usually get it because of our ongoing relationship [with these groups]," said Gordon.

Four Regional Forums to Be Held This Year

NBAA has scheduled four Business Aviation Regional Forums for 2011. The forums are day-long learning and networking events designed to meet the needs of the regional business aviation community, where key issues can be raised and discussed. Here are the dates and locations for this year's forums:

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