national

New Haneda flight routes to take aircraft over central Tokyo

19 Comments

The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism and the municipal governments of five wards in Tokyo have agreed to new flight routes for Haneda Airport.

As the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and Paralympics approach, the ministry plans to alter flight routes and times to Haneda Airport in order to accommodate more flights to and from the airport. The goal is to increase the number of annual departures and landings from the current 90,000 to 129,000 by 2020.

Airspace over the city center has been off limits to plane travel, requiring aircraft to approach Haneda over Tokyo Bay and Chiba Prefecture. The proposed new flight routes will allow aircraft to fly over Shibuya, Shinjuku, Minato, Shinagawa and Arakawa wards, Fuji TV reported. Aircraft will be flying lower than the height of Tokyo Tower over inhabited areas as they take off and land.

Initially, the plan drew a lot of protests from local residents worried about noise and safety. Transport Ministry and Tokyo Metropolitan Government officials met with municipal government representatives on July 28 to gain their approval. Specific measures to alleviate the noise problem were not discussed.

Most of the extra slots at Haneda are expected to go to foreign airlines, a transport ministry official said.

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19 Comments
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I've flown into Haneda a few times, especially from the U.S.A., it surprises me when we fly well south of Haneda itself and then back North to it for the landing.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

It's better to be safe than sorry.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

So there is local resident protest and the Transport Ministry and Tokyo Metropolitan Government officials only meet with municipal government representatives one day, according to this report, and get their approval? They don't even bother to open for public debate this dangerous and noisy decision that will affect many. And they call it democracy.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Isn't Tokyo already polluted enough? The noise and air pollution will increase immensely with this careless approach. More sickness, more distressed people.. But it's all worth it for the sake of a 'growing economy', that's what counts, right?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Yes, this will surely upset the calm serenity of Shibuya and Shinjuku for sure

13 ( +13 / -0 )

Shibuya, Shinjuku, Minato, Shinagawa and Arakawa wards

So planes will be allowed to fly over Arakawa-ku, but not its surrounding wards. How is that possible?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Currently when there is bad weather the planes fly directly over Edogawa ward on a south-westerly approach to Haneda. The news plans will distribute that more evenly across the rest of Tokyo which is a good thing for people who live in Edogawa ward.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Landing and takeoff depend on the wind direction. Look at the military base activities. In the last 9 months here I notice all flight patterns depend on wind. Perhaps I an naive.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Landing and takeoff depend on the wind direction

ahh now I understand why the runway is moved everytime there is a change in the wind.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

ahh now I understand why the runway is moved everytime there is a change in the wind.

You DO understand the planes are diverted into the wind, don't you?

3 ( +4 / -1 )

This is a big mistake. With the 2020 Olympics just around the corner, they just put a huge 'bullseye' over the heart of Tokyo for terrorists to aim for. Koike-san might want to rethink this! Why take a chance?!

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

You DO understand the planes are diverted into the wind, don't you?

You learn something everyday , let me check with the tower and make sure the wind sock has a hole in it.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

I'm with warispeace on this one. Once again, the peasants and the environment get ignored and screwed over in favour of Japan Inc.. At least when the Brits expand Heathrow, local residents get free double and triple glazing windows.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Transport Ministry and Tokyo Metropolitan Government officials met with municipal government representatives on July 28 to gain their approval. Specific measures to alleviate the noise problem were not discussed.

so the residents get screwed. notice that they don't fly over chiyoda-ku (imperial palace)...

2 ( +2 / -0 )

This is a big mistake. With the 2020 Olympics just around the corner, they just put a huge 'bullseye' over the heart of Tokyo for terrorists to aim for. Koike-san might want to rethink this! Why take a chance?!

I take it you've read the recent spate of scare articles about how Japan may be a target for terrorists. Just like me. I'm scared to death too.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Landing and takeoff depend on the wind direction.

Nobody wants to land with a tailwind - very dangerous

0 ( +0 / -0 )

You learn something everyday , let me check with the tower and make sure the wind sock has a hole in it.

In other words, you still have no idea about the concept of wind direction. Yikes.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Landing and takeoff depend on the wind direction. Look at the military base activities. In the last 9 months here I notice all flight patterns depend on wind. Perhaps I an naive.

Perhaps, but if so then you're not alone. There are many who don't realize that the "active" runway will always be the one that points closest to being into the wind. Airports generally build their runways to align with the prevailing winds. Taking off into the wind shortens your takeoff roll and landing into the wind lowers your ground speed on approach - shortening your stopping distance.

If you ever wondered why Haneda's two main runways (16R/34L and 16L/34R) point in towards the city when it would be safer to run parallel to the city, this is because of which direction the winds usually run in Tokyo Bay. The direction facing into the prevailing winds is used most often, but the reverse is available in those cases where the wind is coming from somewhere opposite to the prevailing winds. Haneda has a shorter runway (4/22) that DOES parallel the city and can be used by smaller aircraft when the winds are almost directly across the two main runways. "Shorter runway" and "smaller aircraft" are relative terms. While a Boeing Dreamliner (or whatever the current Airbus behemoth is) probably won't use it, runway 4/22 is 2.5 kilometers (1.55 miles) long and can be used by most commercial aircraft.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

it will only take one accident for people to realize this is a bad idea

there are absolutely no safe places for an aircraft with multiple engine loss or complete loss of controls to land in the tokyo area. routing traffic directly over the most densely built up city in the world is just asking for trouble.

is there even any precedent for routing that much traffic through a major city full of very tall buildings right under the approach paths??

they should just turn tachikawa into an international commercial airport if they want to reduce the congestion, at least the terrain to the north and south of tachikawa is less densely populated

2 ( +2 / -0 )

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