Super Bowl 51 Flight Restrictions

Friday, February 3, 2017

Pilots flying in the airspace around Houston, TX, between Feb. 2-6 will want to familiarize themselves with the FAA’s air traffic procedures NOTAM for the area on those dates. The FAA has released the guidance in conjunction with Super Bowl LI, which takes place on Sunday, Feb. 5 at NRG Stadium in Houston, TX. Game time will be at 5:30 p.m. CST.

As a designated National Security Special Event, additional unmanned aircraft restrictions will be in place before, during and after the Super Bowl. Learn more here: Super Bowl No Drone Zone.

Note that reservations will be required for arrivals and departures from Thursday, Feb. 2 through Monday, Feb. 6 at 21 Houston-area airports. Reservations can be obtained through local FBOs.

  • George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH)
  • William P. Hobby Airport (HOU)
  • Ellington Airport (EFD)
  • Scholes International Airport at Galveston (GLS)
  • Houston Executive Airport (TME)
  • Lone Star Executive Airport (CXO)
  • David Wayne Hooks Memorial Airport (DWH)
  • Sugar Land Regional Airport (SGR)
  • West Houston Airport (IWS)
  • Texas Gulf Coast Regional Airport (LBX)
  • Pearland Regional Airport (LVJ)
  • La Porte Municipal Airport (T41)
  • Baytown Airport (HPY)
  • Houston Southwest Airport (AXH)
  • RWJ Airpark (54T)
  • Chambers County Airport (T00)
  • Liberty Municipal Airport (T78)
  • Navasota Municipal Airport (60R)
  • Eagle Lake Airport (ELA)
  • Wharton Regional Airport (ARM)
  • Bay City Municipal Airport (BYY)

Required Route Structures for Arrivals and Departures

Arrival Route Requirements: Feb 2: 6 a.m. (1200z) through Feb 6 8 p.m. (07/0200z)

The arrival route requirements are specific to arrivals into several Houston-area airports. They are broken into arrival airport and direction for both turbojet and turbo prop/prop aircraft. These routes can be found in the FAA air traffic management procedures NOTAM.

Departure Route Requirements: Feb 2 6 a.m. (1200z) through Feb 6 8 p.m. (07/0200z)

The departure route requirements are specific to airport of origin and direction of flight and destination. These routes can be found in the FAA air traffic management procedures NOTAM.

To assist flight operators in easily obtaining important air traffic management information, the FAA has published NOTAM’s specific to each airport in the region:
George Bush Intercontinental/Houston (IAH) – William P. Hobby (HOU) – Ellington  (EFD)  Sugarland Regional (SGR) – West Houston (IWS) – Houston Southwest (AXH) – Houston Executive (TME) – David Wayne Hooks Memorial (DWH) – Conroe/North Houston Regional (CXO) – Pearland Regional (LVJ) – Texas Gulf Coast Regional (LBX) – La Porte Municipal (T41) – Scholes International (GLS) – Baytown (HPY)

FAA ATC Air Traffic Management Initiatives

Air traffic management Initiatives can be expected throughout the week and may include the following:

  • Ground Delay Programs (GDP)
  • Airspace Flow Programs (AFP)
  • Collaborative Trajectory Options Program (CTOP)
  • Time Based Metering
  • Miles in Trail
  • Airborne Holding
  • Ground Stops

The FAA has published a webpage that contains all air traffic management related information for all Houston area-airspace and airports. It will be updated as additional information becomes available.

Special Event TFR for Super Bowl Sunday – February 5th, 2017

A TFR has been published for the Houston, TX area associated with Super Bowl LI. The TFR will be centered on NRG Stadium and will be active from 4:00pm Central Standard time (2200z) until 11:59pm Central Standard time (06/0559z) on Sunday, February 5th. The TFR will have a 10 nautical mile inner ring as well as a 30 nautical mile outer ring.

The 10 nautical mile TFR centered on NRG Stadium prohibits GA operations at *Houston Hobby/HOU* from 1600 local (2200z) until 2359 local (06/0559z) on February 5, 2017.

The 30 nautical mile TFR ring centered on NRG Stadium has additional restrictions between the 10 and 30 nautical mile areas from 1600 local (2200z) until 2359 local (06/0559z) on February 5, 2017.

View the Super Bowl LI TFR Graphic Depiction

Read the full text of the Super Bowl LI TFR

TSA Gateway Screening available out of Houston Hobby/HOU during TFR

TSA Gateway Screening will be available for aircraft wishing to depart Houston Hobby/HOU during the TFR on February 5, 2017. TSA screening will be available at HOU between 1600-2230 local. Reservations for screening may be made beginning February 2nd by calling TSA at 713-454-6942. Operators wishing to utilize the TSA screening process must register with TSA no less than 24 hours prior to their scheduled departure time. Flight crew and passengers must provide a valid government issued photo ID to the TSA prior to departure from HOU. Gateway screening will include ID verification and vetting of all flight crew and passengers, screening of persons and baggage and inspection of the aircraft.

Please note that there may be a limit of aircraft allowed to arrange TSA screening due to TSA staffing at HOU.

FAA Super Bowl LI air traffic management webpage.