Sunday, May 31, 2009

Sunday 5-31-09

Sunrider Corp MD-87 N168CF (49670/1453) arrived at 10:33am from Salt Lake City Intl (KSLC) and parked at AirFlite.

Orange County/Sunbird Aviation LLC Gulfstream G450 N237GA (c/n 4055) arrived at 12:17pm from Schulz-Sonoma Co Airport (KSTS) and parked at Long Beach Air Center.

Four Boeing F/A-18D Hornets were parked at Signature. There was one CAG bird, one aggressor and two normal grey colored models. The planes were from the VMFA-101 Sharp Shooters based at Miramar, CA. The aggressor and one grey F/A-18D departed at 12:29pm, returning sometime between 1:10pm and 1:40pm. The aggressor departed again at 2:40pm and did not return. One grey Hornet departed at 4:29pm and did not return. The CAG bird and other grey Hornet departed at 8:30pm and did not return.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N808T, N94FT

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Court rules Long Beach Airport EIR is valid, clearing way for terminal expansion

LONG BEACH - An Orange County appeals court has ruled that an environmental impact study of planned improvements at Long Beach Airport was adequate, clearing the way for long-awaited terminal improvements to begin.

The 4th District California Court of Appeals issued its opinion late Thursday, one month after hearing oral arguments in the case, ruling in favor of the city of Long Beach and against the Long Beach Parent-Teacher Association.

The PTA alleged in its lawsuit that an environmental impact report that had examined the effects of expanding the airport terminal and building a parking garage there didn't take into account the potential noise impact of additional flights on area schools that might result from the expansion.

Writing for the three-justice appeals court, Justice William Rylaarsdam says in the ruling that it isn't the airport's size that restricts the number of flights at the airport, but Long Beach's strict noise ordinance.

Under a 1995 federal court settlement, the airport is limited to 41 commercial flights and 25 commuter flights daily.

"What plaintiff's (PTA's) argument misses is that the increase in the airport terminal's size, including the added gates and aircraft parking spaces, is intended to alleviate the currently overcrowded conditions resulting from the increased flight activity permitted under the city's existing noise ordinance," Rylaarsdam says.

Initially, the PTA had joined LongBeach Unified School District in the lawsuit in 2006, but after an Orange County judge ruled in the city's favor in early 2008, only the PTA appealed the ruling.

The lawsuit has been one of the main obstacles to the airport project, in turn creating tension between city officials and JetBlue Airways, the airport's largest airline.

In April, JetBlue CEO Dave Barger publicly said that the airline might consider leaving Long Beach because of the lack of progress on terminal improvements.

Since then, JetBlue has backed off of this stance and reaffirmed its commitment to Long Beach.

Airport officials also recently unveiled a phased plan to begin terminal improvements and construction of part of the parking garage.

While the plan is less ambitious than initially proposed, officials say it will be affordable and can be done mostly with existing revenues.

Legal `battle is over'

While the PTA could ask the California Supreme Court to review the case, City Attorney Bob Shannon said he thinks that is unlikely.

"I don't see any substantial likelihood that the Supreme Court would review this case," Shannon said today.

"For the legal aspects of it, practically speaking, the battle is over."

Attorney John Eastman, who represents the PTA, said Friday that he was "disappointed but not surprised" by the ruling.

Eastman said he hadn't talked with the PTA about the court's decision yet and couldn't comment on whether any further legal steps would be taken.

Eastman noted that the city has contended any change to the noise ordinance would require a new environmental study and said "we will hold them to that."

However, Eastman said the potential noise impact should be examined before the city spends millions of dollars on a project that he maintains could eventually lead to more flights.

New parking in phases

Under the airport plan, a new parking garage will be built in two phases, initially creating 1,900 parking spaces and then adding 3,200 more after 2016, if needed.

Airport officials expect to break ground on the garage by the end of the year.

The parking project will be funded through 30-year bonds that will have an annual debt service of $4.2 million, while the garage's Phase One is expected to bring in $4.9 million in additional revenue.

At the same time, the airport will close its off-site Parking Lot D, which it currently rents.

The first phase of the terminal improvements should begin by the end of 2010 and will focus on improving common areas such as restrooms, concession areas, passenger holding rooms and security checkpoints, airport officials say.

That work will cost $35 million and will be funded mostly through passenger facility charges paid by the airlines, officials say.

(Press Telegram)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Wednesday 5-27-09

The second Boeing F/A-18 Hornet that arrived on Sunday (5/24/09) finally departed today at 2:35pm after being stuck at Signature on a mechanical.

Gulfstream G-V VP-CES (c/n 669) departed for Le Bourget (LFPB) at 9:14pm.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N940CC, N508QS

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tuesday 5-26-09

Gulfstream G-V VP-CES (c/n 669) arrived at 7:17pm from Los Angeles Intl (KLAX) and parked on the Gulfstream ramp.

Ameristar Jet Charter Boeing 737-200 N733TW (c/n 22732/877) arrived as AJI9340 from Will Rogers World (KOKC) at 9:23pm and parked at Signature for fuel. The plane departed at 10:00pm as AJI9341 headed for Pullman/Moscow Rgnl (KPUW).

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N490QS

Monday, May 25, 2009

Monday 5-25-09

Gulfstream G350 N723MM (c/n 4077) arrived at 9:55pm and parked on the Gulfstream ramp.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: VP-BIP, N97FT

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sunday 5-24-09

Blue Airways newest E-190 N306JB (c/n 19000272) arrived from Austin-Bergstrom Intl (KAUS) at 7:26pm and is remaining overnight. The tail design is "Harlequin" and the name on the plane is "Blue Orleans".

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N506QS, N851CB

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Thursday 5-21-09

Allegiant Air MD-83 N871GA arrived as AAY5214 from San Diego Intl (KSAN) at 9:10pm. The plane ferried to Sacramento Intl (KSMF) as AAY5215 at 9:50pm.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: PR-WRO

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Tuesday 5-19-09

Katlitta Charters 727-2B6(F) N720CK (c/n 21298/1246) arrived as KFS720 at 2:50pm from Nashville Intl (KBNA) and parked at Long Beach Air Center. This was a government charter.

Horizon Airlines CRJ700 N609QX which carries the Oregon State Beavers College colors was the aircraft used on the second PDX flight of the day.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Monday 3-18-09

The Rockwell B-1B Bomber 86-0125 (c/n 85) was towed out onto rwy 25L at 3pm. The plane started to taxi at 3:45pm and took off on rwy 30 at 3:54pm as "Thunder 26".

Gulfstreams noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N902L

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sunday 5-17-09

Horizon Airlines started serving LGB today again flying two daily flights Portland, OR. Their first flight arrived from Portland Intl (KPDX) as QXE551 at 9:47am. The plane departed back to Portland Intl (KPDX) at 10:47am as QXE552. The plane used was N606QX.

Allegiant Air MD-87 N945MA ferried from San Diego Intl (KSAN) as AAY5175 and arrived at 7:50pm. The plane departed to Laughlin/Bullhead Intl (KIFP) as AAY5175 at 9:10pm.

At 8:40pm there was a 4.7 earthquake based near Inglewood. The airport was closed for a few minutes while the runways were checked for any damage.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N17ND

Friday, May 15, 2009

Pilot Lands Safely At LGB With Gear Up

A 1962 Beechcraft P35 Bonanza N9657Y (c/n D-7072) made a gear up landing at LGB Thursday morning. The pilot reported landing gear trouble at 8:30am and made the gear up landing on runway 25R. The pilot, who was the only passenger, was not injured.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Support for Boeing C-17 growing in Senate, lawmakers say

U.S. Sens. Barbara Boxer and Kit Bond have announced growing bipartisan support to save the Long Beach-built Boeing C-17.

Boxer, D-Calif., and Bond, R-Mo., issued a statement saying 17 of their Senate colleagues signed a letter asking the Senate Appropriations Committee to find funding for the airlifter.

Those who signed include some of the most influential senators, including Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif.; Orrin Hatch, R-Utah; and Joseph Lieberman, I-Conn.

A similar letter-writing effort led by local Reps. Laura Richardson, D-Long Beach, and Dana Rohrabacher, R-Huntington Beach, is under way in the House of Representatives.

The issue pits members of Congress against President Barack Obama, whose administration last week released a budget recommending that the production line be shuttered. Defense Secretary Robert Gates has said the military has enough C-17s to meet its needs.

A Boxer spokeswoman in Washington, D.C., referred a press call to a statement issued by the senator.

"Congressional support for the C-17 program remains high because the aircraft has an impressive record of providing airlift support to our troops in combat zones and those working on humanitarian missions around the world,"` Boxer said, according to the statement.

At stake are more than 5,000 jobs in Long Beach, where officials said they remain optimistic that members of Congress from both parties will work to fund future orders.

"We continue monitoring the situation," said C-17 project spokesman Jerry Drelling. "We are very appreciative of the support we've received in the Senate."

Also on Tuesday, Boeing delivered its 187th C-17 to Charleston Air Force Base in South Carolina. Boeing is filling 205 USAF orders.

The Chicago-based aerospace giant recently received a U.S. Air Force contract valued at up to $400 million for two of the aircraft intended for use by NATO allies and Sweden and Finland. Before that, a House panel proposed adding $2.2 billion for eight C-17s to Obama's pending war request.

Boeing, which has five international orders in production, is aggressively seeking more from outside the United States.

However, Drelling said international orders alone cannot sustain the C-17 program because U.S. production keeps prices affordable.

"We need a healthy U.S. production line," Drelling said.

Existing orders should keep the cargo-plane line going through 2011.

(Press Telegram)

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Sunday 5-10-09

Continental Airlines 737-800 N13248 ferried from Los Angeles Intl (KLAX) as COA1930 at 1:49pm and parked at Signature. The plane picked up the Kansas City Royals baseball team and departed to San Francisco Intl (KSFO) as COA1905 at 5:28pm.

One F/A-18 Hornet departed from Signature at 2:33pm.

Olympia Aviation McDonnell Douglas DC-9-51 N682RW arrived at 11:56pm from Salina Muni (KSLN) which is where they made a fuel stop after starting the trip from Detroit Metro Wayne Co (KDTW). The plane brought in the Detroit Red Wings hockey team who are playing the Anahiem Ducks in the playoffs.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N156WC, N841GA (green)

Saturday 5-9-09

Two F/A-18 Hornets departed from Signature at 3:33pm.

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Sunday 5-3-09

Two F/A-18 Hornets departed at 2:23pm after being parked at Signature.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N545CC

Saturday At The Airport

I took the photos above during the late afternoon. Saturdays have been good lately for some pictures on the ramp and hopefully will continue to be good since summer is coming!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Saturday 5-2-09

The Rockwell B-1B Bomber 86-0125 (c/n 85) that has been parked under the tower was towed to the Boeing blast wall inside the Boeing property around 12pm today. The plane was moved from the Boeing property back to the area beneath the tower at 4:30pm after undergoing engine runups today.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: VP-BMV

Friday, May 1, 2009

Friday 5-1-09

Collings Foundation B-24J Liberator NX224X, B-17G NL93012 and TP-51C NL251MX arrived between 2:30pm and 2:35pm and all the aircraft parked at Signature. They will be here on display until May 5th before leaving for Camarillo. Rides are also available. For more information, check out

NetJets Gulfstream G-IV(SP) N487QS (c/n 1287) arrived from Palm Springs Intl (KPSP) at 2:52pm and parked at Gulfstream.

Volga-Dnepr Airlines AN-124 RA-82044 arrived at 4:18pm from Biggs Aaf (Fort Bliss) (KBIF) and is parked on taxiway Alpha. The plane will be here through the weekend with a tentative scheduled departure time of 9:00am Monday May 4.

Tail numbers noted on the Gulfstream ramp: N624GJ, OE-IVV, G550 c/n 5224 with "The Chatwal" titles on tail.