Japan’s minister for administrative reform and deregulation has called for Tokyo’s Narita and Haneda airports to be privatized and merged and managed by a single operating company, arguing that the facilities would be run more efficiently in the private sector. The minister said he expects a privatization plan for the country’s main gateways to be approved by year-end.
Airports, Heliports and FBOs » Heliports
New developments at heliports including regulations and noise issues; legal disputes; openings, and acquisitions.
Mireille’s Inflight Catering, headquartered at Long Beach, Calif., last month opened a fully equipped business aviation catering operation at San Francisco International Airport. The 1,500-sq-ft facility is under the direction of Mireille operations manager Eric Youe and offers catering services to San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose International Airports.
Bahama Bay Resort had no sooner announced the opening of its heliport for public use when it had to close because of damage from Hurricane Frances. Located in West End, Grand Bahama, on the north jetty of the marina at Old Bahama Bay, the helipad’s normal operating hours will be from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. U.S. customs and immigration clearance fees are about $100.
The fate of Berlin’s Tempelhof Airport is in the hands of local voters, who on October 17 can cast ballots in favor of keeping the historic downtown gateway open. No fewer than 170,000 pro-Tempelhof votes will be needed to force a full public referendum on the issue next year, with the outcome to be determined by majority (provided at least 25 percent of registered voters cast a ballot).
Customers flying to Eurocopter’s Donauwörth training center and customer service facility in Germany now benefit from a helicopter-dedicated airspace layout, the first of its kind in Europe, according to the local Eurocopter flight operations team. The new flight procedures allow operations in almost all weather conditions.
Since mid-March, approaches at the airport have been GPS-based, allowing flights in IMC.
A new scale of landing charges introduced at the beginning of April for users of London Heliport is aimed at containing demand for the riverside facility, which has an annual limit of 12,000 movements–effectively 6,000 landings–as well as helping its new owner recoup a “considerable” investment in the site.
A research program commissioned by the UK Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) has produced findings that could lead to safer night landings on offshore helidecks. The results have been so impressive that the CAA, in conjunction with other authorities, submitted a proposal to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) to amend current worldwide standards and practices for helideck and heliport lighting.
Progress is being made toward the goal of rotorcraft taking their place in the national transportation infrastructure, according to presenters at January’s American Helicopter Society (AHS) infrastructure convention in Carmel, Calif. The most significant announcement was a congressional requirement in the 2004 federal appropriations bill for the FAA to prepare a document–a technology road map–to define how the U.S.
The Baltimore Heliport in Maryland’s “Charm City” now features an updated pilot lounge with new sofas, flat-screen tv and DVD player. Located on Pier 7 on South Clinton Street, the heliport has four landing pads, and a new 6,000-sq-ft hangar is being constructed.
Lockheed Martin and Kaman Aerospace , a subsidiary of Kaman of Bloomfield, Conn., have teamed to market advanced manned and unmanned helicopters worldwide for government applications. The companies intend to develop an unmanned version of the K-Max, already FAA approved for manned operation. The K-Max, with counter-rotating and intermeshing rotors that eliminate the need for a tail rotor, has accumulated more than 200,000 flight hours.