UPDATE Pearson Field airspace restriction dropped

first_imgThe Federal Aviation Administration has dropped a controversial airspace restriction over Vancouver’s Pearson Field, handing a victory to the city and others who lobbied- against it.The FAA notified the city of that decision this week, according to Pearson airport manager Willy Williamson. The move comes two months after the federal agency convened a special panel to review the shared airspace between Pearson and Portland International Airport. Ultimately, the panel decided to leave the arrangement basically unchanged.“It really ended up being a win-win situation,” Williamson said, noting Pearson will continue to operate as is with the latest federal sign-off.“That keeps the airport viable-, and it keeps tens of thousands of dollars coming to the local economy,” Williamson- said.Last September, the FAA floated a proposed rule change that would have restricted local flights in and out of Pearson. The so-called “Pearson box” rule would have created an area one mile wide by six miles long in which Pearson pilots would have to yield to larger airliners approaching PDX from the west.FAA officials maintained that the proposal was crafted with safety in mind. But local pilots and others pushed back, forcing a delay of the proposed rule change before its planned October implementation. Members of the Northwest’s Congressional delegation also leaned on the FAA to put the brakes on the seemingly fast-tracked change.That included U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, who praised this week’s developments.“This resolution brings welcome relief for the local pilots, and the local businesses and workers supported by the economic activity from Pearson Air Field,” Herrera Beutler said in a released statement. “I appreciate the FAA’s willingness to reassess the safety and economic implications of its proposal, and consider more reasonable solutions.”last_img