FAA Facility Maps, Round 2

June 22, 2017
FAA Facility Maps, Round 2

Drone pilots who need to fly near major airports may find it easier to request FAA clearance now that the agency has released a fresh batch of facility maps.

The first set of more than 200 maps, released at the end of April, focused on lesser-known airports in Class E airspace. But the maps posted online today cover core international airports like Charlotte-Douglas, Chicago O’Hare, Dulles in the Washington, D.C., area, Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta, and Philadelphia.

The maps define altitudes around airports where the FAA might be willing to authorize drone flights. The altitudes start at 400 feet several miles from the airports and decline to zero in the immediate vicinity. Drone pilots still have to submit specific requests to operate in these areas, but the maps are designed to help them complete that process and pinpoint locations and altitudes already analyzed by the FAA.