U.S. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION

ORDER
JO 7400.2J
Effective Date:
February 9, 2012
 
     

Subject:  Procedures for Handling Airspace Matters
Includes:  Change 3 effective 8/22/13, Change 2 effective 3/7/13, Change 1 effective 7/26/12 and  Errata effective 2/9/12.

 

Section 3. Class B Airspace Processing

15-3-1. RESPONSIBILITIES

a. The Airspace Regulations and ATC Procedures Group Manager is responsible for oversight of the Class B airspace designation/modification process. All NPRMs and final rules must be issued by Airspace Regulations and ATC Procedures Group. Airspace Regulations and ATC Procedures Group will provide assistance, as needed, to the regions/service area offices in developing Class B airspace actions.

b. The service area office is responsible for coordination to determine Class B airspace candidacy, or the need for modifications to an existing area. As part of this responsibility, the service area office must perform an analysis of the Class B airspace candidate and document the analysis in a staff study. Preparation of the staff study may be delegated to the facility.

15-3-2. STAFF STUDY

The staff study must be in the format detailed in FAAO 1800.2, Evaluations, Appraisals, and Staff Studies. At a minimum, the staff study must include the following:

a. A written description and the graphic depiction of the proposed area.

b. Graphic depiction(s) and analysis of the following:

1.  Existing routes with associated altitudes that VFR traffic use while operating en route through the area or transitioning to all affected airports (charted VFR flyways).

2. Proposed VFR Flyways, with associated altitudes that would be charted to accommodate VFR aircraft desiring to transit the Class B airspace area (see FAAO 7210.3, chapter 11, National Programs).

3. A redundant boundary description including VOR/DME and latitude and longitude points outlining the proposed Class B area. In addition, where possible, include geographical features.

4. Routes with associated altitudes that IFR traffic use to conduct en route operations through the area being analyzed.

5. IFR departure and arrival traffic flows, including SIAPs, instrument departure procedures, STARs, and preferential arrival and departure routes associated with each runway configuration.

c. A narrative discussion and rationale of the following:

1. Number of aircraft based and types of operations conducted at affected airports.

2. Numbers of VFR operations that receive ATC service, that are denied service, and that circumnavigate the present terminal airspace configuration. Include any anticipated increase or decrease in these numbers if a Class B airspace configuration is modified or so designated.

3. Average delay in minutes now experienced by VFR operations in obtaining ATC services, and any anticipated increase or decrease in this number.

4. The facility's ability to provide ATC service to IFR and VFR traffic within the boundaries of its delegated airspace.

d. Analyses of staffing options, and issues, such as:

1. Current staffing status and the anticipated staffing requirements for implementing the Class B airspace.

2. Major proposals/comments submitted by user groups and an analysis and/or disposition of each.

3. Impact on air traffic and air navigation facilities including new or modified control positions required, if any, and new or relocation of navigational aids/communication equipment.

e. Environmental considerations.

f. Conclusions. Include a discussion on how the proposed establishment or modification will enhance safety and the efficiency of airspace management.

15-3-3. AIRSPACE USERS COORDINATION

a. Pre-NPRM. The service area office must ensure that user input is sought and considered prior to formulating any planned Class B airspace area design.

1. An ad hoc advisory committee, composed of representatives of local airspace users, must be formed to present input or recommendations to the FAA regarding the proposed design of the Class B airspace area. The service area office should provide advice and assistance on technical matters to the committee as needed.

2. Informal airspace meeting(s) must be conducted in accordance with Chapter 2 of this order.

3. Based on the results of the region's analysis and the staff study, the service area office must determine whether the effort should be continued to NPRM or terminated. The service area office will forward the proposal, all pertinent documentation (including advisory committee and informal airspace meeting input), and the region's/service area office's recommendations, to Airspace Regulations and ATC Procedures Group for further action. If it is determined to proceed with the rulemaking process, Airspace Regulations and ATC Procedures Group will prepare the NPRM.

b. Post-NPRM. The service area office must:

1. Review all comments received in response to the NPRM and informal airspace meeting(s).

2. Coordinate with the concerned facility to address all substantive aeronautical comments.

3. Forward a discussion of how each substantive comment was addressed, along with the region's/service area office's recommendation for final action on the proposal, to Airspace Regulations and ATC Procedures Group.

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