4.10 Airport Obstruction Management

The airspace around each facility and the critical surfaces that must be protected are unique to each airport, influenced by the facility design and instrument approach types. FAR Part 77 is the most prominent and familiar set of obstruction evaluation criteria; however, it serves only as the initial means of obstruction identification and evaluation and does not include any enforcement authority. State and local regulations are needed to provide protection for an airport and its navigable airspace.

ACRP Report 27: Enhancing Airport Land Use Compatibility
In three volumes, explores issues related to land use around airports. Volume 1 provides guidance designed to help protect airports from incompatible land uses that impair current and future airport and aircraft operations and safety. Volume 2 includes 15 case studies that targeted a wide range of airports and land use issues. Volume 3 includes aircraft accident data, a framework for an economic assessment of airport costs, and an annotated bibliography.

ACRP Report 38: Understanding Airspace, Objects, and Their Effects on Airports
Provides a comprehensive description of the regulations, standards, evaluation criteria, and processes designed to protect the airspace surrounding airports. The report is designed to help the understanding and application of the appropriate airspace design and evaluation criteria to ensure a safe operating environment for aircraft and to maintain airport operational flexibility and reliability, without unduly restricting desirable building development and attendant economic growth in the surrounding community.

FAA Advisory Circular 70/7460-1: Obstruction Marking and Lighting
Sets forth standards for marking and lighting obstructions that have been deemed to be a hazard to navigable airspace.

FAA Advisory Circular 150/5300-13: Airport Design
Establishes the FAA standards and recommendations for the geometric layout and engineering design of runways, taxiways, aprons, and other facilities at civil airports. Identifies the airport reference code, approach reference code, departure reference code, and taxiway design group that are used in identifying the appropriate design standards for an airport.

FAA Notice Criteria Tool for Part 77
Assists in applying Part 77 notice criteria.

FAA Obstruction Evaluation/Airport Airspace Analysis (OE/AAA)
Allows the electronic filing of FAA Forms 7460-1 and 7460-2 to evaluate planned construction or alterations that may affect navigable airspace.

FAA Order 8260.3: United States Standard for Terminal Instrument Procedures (TERPS)
Prescribes standardized methods for designing and evaluating instrument flight procedures (IFPs) in the United States and its territories. It is to be used by all personnel responsible for the preparation, approval, and promulgation of IFPs. These criteria are predicated on normal aircraft operations and performance.

FAA Standard Operating Procedure 9: FAA Aeronautical Study, Coordination and Evaluation
Establishes procedures for FAA Office of Airports to examine those objects that exceed the Part 77 notice criteria, establish whether the objects exceed any of the imaginary surfaces prescribed by Part 77, and determine whether the objects cause a substantial adverse impact that affects a significant volume of aeronautical activity.

FAA Surface Analysis and Visualization Tool
For authorized users, analyzes object penetrations to the visual area surface of instrument approaches using a risk-based approach.

FAR Part 77: Safe, Efficient Use and Preservation of the Navigable Airspace
Establishes the requirements to provide notice to the FAA of certain proposed construction, or the alteration of existing structures; the standards used to determine obstructions to air navigation, and navigational and communication facilities; the process for aeronautical studies of obstructions to air navigation or navigational facilities to determine the effect on the safe and efficient use of navigable airspace, air navigation facilities or equipment; and the process to petition the FAA for discretionary review of determinations, revisions, and extensions of determinations.

49 U.S. Code §40103
Establishes and affirms that the U.S. government has exclusive sovereignty of airspace of the United States, and directs the administrator of the FAA to develop plans and policies for the use of navigable airspace.