AOPA Opposes FAA Radar Tower Near Airport

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It seems the FAA would know that if it's going to mess around with the airspace near Frederick (Md.) Municipal Airport, AOPA is going to be paying close attention -- since its headquarters overlooks the field. Sure enough, a plan by the FAA to install a 122-foot-tall radar tower on a ridge just 100 feet off the extended centerline for Frederick's Runway 12 has attracted a quick and loud protest from AOPA. "One part of the FAA already says [the tower] would be a 'hazard to air navigation,'" AOPA said in a news release yesterday. The tower would affect traffic-pattern operations and some instrument operations. Also, it would probably prevent adding a needed LPV instrument approach to Runway 30. "It's the old story about the right hand, the left hand, and mutual knowledge. It will come as no great surprise to many AOPA members that when it comes to the FAA, the hands sometimes don't communicate," AOPA said.