Thu, May 15, 2003
There's Some Room for 'Interpretation,' But the Numbers are the
We've received a number of releases, from both
pilot organizations and unions, that have implied that, since Mayor
Daley had Meigs Field's runway ruined, ATC at Midway (the busiest
airport in the world, before O'Hare got going) has been
over-stressed by what was said to have been Meigs' GA traffic.
According to recently-gathered statistics, that shouldn't be the
95% of Meigs traffic was GA.
FAA Chicago-area spokesman Tony Molinaro told ANN
that since Meigs was wrecked (the exact word he used was,
"closed"), GA flights at Midway are down, when comparing April,
2002 with April of 2003; Month-to-month comparisons show, in fact,
that Midway GA flights are down 4%. Midway traffic overall, though,
is up -- mainly due to an increase in air taxi activity.
Mr. Molinaro said, "The Meigs GA pilots aren't flying to
Midway." Where they might be going is open to speculation, but he
offered us this: "Waukegan is down 16%; Gary's down 15%; O'Hare --
they get some GA traffic there -- is down 9%." On the plus side,
"Pal-Waukee is up 8.5%; and DuPage County is up 6.4% -- counting
April to April."
Up, down, flying around...
Is there anything definitive that can be drawn from this pattern
shift? Molinaro told us, "Are those Meigs pilots flying to
Pal-Waukee or DuPage? I don't know." Is Midway traffic up?
Springtime brings out more aircraft. "From March to April, it is up
-- that's the nature of springtime flying," he told us. "Comparing
April to April, though, it's down."
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