Community Engagement — Establishment of Class C Airspace for Harrisburg, PA
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is proposing to modify the airspace over Harrisburg International Airport (MDT). The reason that the FAA considers making a change like this is for safety. This proposal would expand the area where pilots are required to interact with Air Traffic Control, giving everyone better vision into the operation of the airspace. The plan will not change existing flight paths or the altitudes that aircraft currently fly; it will not result in more flights over the area.
Date and Time
The agency will hold a virtual informal airspace meeting for the proposal on Wednesday, August 18, 2021, from 6-8 p.m., via Zoom. The public can register via the Zoom platform or watch the presentation on FAA's Facebook, Twitter and YouTube social media channels.
Each meeting attendee will be given an opportunity to make a presentation, but they must preregister through the meeting registration website and attend the meeting on the Zoom platform. Attendees watching the meeting on FAA's social media channels can submit questions via the chat feature on the individual platform, but will not have the ability to make presentations.
Each presentation will be limited to three minutes. This meeting will not be adjourned until everyone on the list has had an opportunity to address the panel. This meeting may be adjourned at any time if all persons present have had an opportunity to speak.
The proposal would expand the airspace where air traffic controllers track flights and communicate with pilots in the vicinity of Harrisburg International Airport (MDT). It increases safety by ensuring that all flights, including aircraft operating on Visual Flight Rules (VFR), within the proposed Class C airspace area are in direct communications with air traffic control.
The FAA currently categorizes the airspace surrounding MDT as "Class D," which varies between five to six nautical mile radius around the airport. The proposed Class C airspace would replace the current Class D area.
The FAA changes airspace through the federal rulemaking process. After the comment period closes, we will consolidate and review the comments and incorporate modifications into the final proposal. We anticipate issuing a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) in 2021. After considering public comments on the NPRM, the FAA may publish a final rule that officially would modify the airspace.
The National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) requires the FAA to identify and publicly disclose any potential environmental impacts of the proposed airspace modifications. We will conduct an environmental review in compliance with NEPA and other environmental laws, regulations, and orders applicable to FAA actions.