Airspace Update

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Help For The Lost; Hope For DCA...

If you could use a little help navigating through today's security-conscious and ever-changing airspace, AOPA's Air Safety Foundation (ASF) now offers some assistance. The ASF on Monday unveiled a free online training program called "Know Before You Go" that helps pilots deal with the realities of shifting TFRs, prohibited airspace, NOTAMs, the off-and-on ADIZ, and intercept procedures. Pilots who complete the 30-minute program are eligible for credit in the Wings program. Meanwhile, at our nation's capital, GA operators are still banned from Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA), but the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) says there may be some light at the end of that tunnel. A bill now in the U.S. House would require non-scheduled air carriers to be allowed back into the airport, and the NBAA on Monday said it is getting positive response to its lobbying efforts to expand the new rules to include GA. Access would require operators to conform to a TSA-approved security program, which is yet to be developed. Modifications to the bill could take place later this month, the NBAA said.

...New Runways Also Bring Airspace Changes

It may seem strange to some that in these times of diminished air travel, airports are building new runways and terminals. But planners haven't forgotten the congestion that was strangling the system a couple of years ago, and expect an upturn before too long and a positive trend over the long run. The Los Angeles Times reported on Monday that airports across the country launched $1.7 billion in new expansion projects last year. Among those projects is a proposed new parallel runway at St. Louis-Lambert International Airport, and along with the new runway comes changes in traffic flows. The FAA's Central Region plans to hold four public meetings this month to seek input on the ATC modifications. The changes would affect not only STL but four nearby fields as well. Spirit of St. Louis Airport (SUS), St. Louis Downtown Airport (CPS), St. Louis Regional Airport (ALN) and Scott Air Force Base/Mid-America Airport (BLV) may all be affected to some degree. Meetings are to be held June 11 at the Holiday Inn in Collinsville, Ill.; June 17 at the Holiday Inn in Kirkwood, Mo.; June 18 at the St. Peters, Mo., city hall; and June 19 at the Holiday Inn in Alton, Ill. The FAA will accept formal comments through July 18. For more information, call (816) 329-2560 or visit the following FAA Web page.