Final Phase of Northeast Route Update Postponed

 - July 29, 2022, 10:17 AM

The FAA has postponed the activation date for the final phase of its multi-year Northeast Corridor Atlantic Coast Routes (ACR) project from the previously scheduled Nov. 3, 2022, to April 20, 2023. According to the FAA, the delay is to avoid making numerous route changes during the busy summer and winter peaks.

International aviation information provider OpsGroup reports the new procedures will still be published in September but will not be authorized for use until the new activation date. The changes will affect routes over 15 major airports along the Atlantic East Coast from Baltimore-Washington to Raleigh-Durham.

The main change of the ACR project is that 150 new or modified routes are replacing the existing high-altitude route structure. Says OpsGroup: “J Routes are out, new or amended Q and Y Routes are in.” Some amended SIDs and STARs are included. Also affected are “super high” sector routes—FL400 and above. However, OpsGroup said, “The full details of the super high sector routes are not yet known.”

According to the FAA, the transition to performance-based navigation (PBN) decreases the reliance on ground-based navaids. Updates started in 2019 but implementation was delayed due to the pandemic, resulting in the inability to conduct controller training.