Hurricane Sandy closed the major New York City metropolitan area airports and forced the cancellation of more than 20,000 flights as it swept the Northeast region of the U.S. last week, leaving widespread flooding in its wake. The Category 1 hurricane, combined with cold fronts from the north and west, also disrupted operations at airports in Boston, Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C. Other airports nationwide and internationally felt the ripple effect of the cancellations.
Aviation in New York City
London’s Battersea Heliport–now known as Barclays London Heliport following a sponsorship deal with the UK bank–is making the most of its unique position as London’s only heliport for the Olympic Games. It is situated on the Thames River opposite Chelsea, well west of the city and the Olympic Park, which is also close to the Thames.
Quick, what was New York City’s first municipal airport? If you answered Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn, give yourself a pat on the back as not many people would know that. Fewer still appreciate the patina that the former airport, located at the southernmost tip of Flatbush Avenue, has accumulated over the past 80 years. As a teen I lived less than a mile from the site, and I scarcely knew anything about it.
The NTSB announced the promotion of John DeLisi to director of the agency’s office of aviation safety (OAS) today. He will assume his new position on June 2, following the retirement of current director Tom Haueter. DeLisi has bees the OAS’s deputy director since 2007.
For the first time in its 65-year history, the FBO at New York John F. Kennedy International Airport now has a private operator–Sheltair. The company marked the milestone with an official grand-opening ceremony at the facility yesterday afternoon.
Delta Flight 1063’s bird-strike-induced emergency at New York’s JFK airport last week, as well as US Airways Flight 1549’s splashdown in the same city’s Hudson River in 2009 after both engines flamed out due to bird ingestion, quickly became high-profile stories.
At a ceremony late last month, Narita International Airport opened the first dedicated terminal for business and private jets. Operated by the airport authority, Premier Gate–which will be open from 6 a.m. until 11 p.m.–promises privacy for passengers along with swift inbound and outbound passport control procedures through the use of dedicated onsite customs, immigration and quarantine facilities. In conjunction with the opening of the new terminal, the airport said it will extend the permissible duration for corporate jet parking to 30 days from 14.
The Civil Aviation Directorate of Serbia has launched an initiative to open a registered “heliport” in each municipality in the country. AIN understands these will be proper landing areas with at least a wind sock. Municipalities would have to pay for land development and site maintenance. Currently, the Serbian registry of heliports includes only eight platforms.
This could be a called a tale of two cities, but it’s a little more complicated than that.
First, you have Washington, D.C., which has had a viable heliport since early 1998, but it depends on your definition of the word “viable.”
Then you have Dallas, which has had Garland/DRW Heliport since 1988, one of fewer than a dozen stand-alone public-use heliports in the U.S. It was joined in 1994 by 49T, a heliport on the roof of the Dallas Convention Center.
Sky Helicopters, the FBO at Garland/DRW Heliport that is just a few miles from downtown Dallas, added a new hangar and more ramp space. The eight-acre public heliport now has hangar space for up to 50 helicopters and more than a quarter-million sq ft of ramp space. Sky Helicopters has been the heliport’s FBO since 1992. Opened in 1988, Garland/DFW is one of fewer than a dozen stand-alone public-use heliports in the U.S. It offers fuel sales, hangar rental, charter, training and maintenance.