East Hampton Gains Controlled Airspace

Air traffic controllers will be on the job tomorrow morning in the new control tower at East Hampton Airport, directing traffic in and out of the airport between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. each day. Town Councilman Dominick Stanzione
Air traffic controllers will be on the job tomorrow morning in the new control tower at East Hampton Airport, directing traffic in and out of the airport between 7 a.m. and 11 p.m. each day. Town Councilman Dominick Stanzione, at right, coordinated the effort to gain federal approval for the tower and get it in place. Joanne Pilgrim

    The new control tower at East Hampton Airport will begin operating Friday morning at 7. Air traffic controllers will direct planes coming into and flying out of the airport from 7 a.m. till 11 p.m. daily, through October.
    Town Councilman Dominick Stanzione said yesterday that he worked for a year to get the control tower, a temporary trailer-like structure, up and running, and to obtain the required Federal Aviation Administration permission.
    The federal agency published a notice officially designating a radius of 4.8 miles from the airport, and up to 2,500 feet, as controlled airspace during the tower’s operating times.
    The ruling creates a “cylinder of control,” Councilman Stanzione said, in which routes for approaches and takeoffs — and minimum altitudes — will be dictated by the air traffic controllers on duty.
    “The first and principal responsibility of the air traffic control tower is to increase safety, and provide a controlled airspace,” he said. However, “it is hoped and anticipated that having professionally controlled airspace will make a real contribution to noise mitigation, through radius and altitude restrictions, and enforcing what are now voluntary rules,” added Mr. Stanzione.
    He expressed “a tremendous amount of appreciation” toward Town Supervisor Bill Wilkinson, as well as the existing and previous town boards, both of which provided “unanimous support for this effort.”
    Jim Brundige, the airport manager, along with town attorneys and workers who installed electrical and communications connections, “made a Herculean effort to get the thing hooked up,” he said.
    In an e-mail to airport users, Mr. Brundige said there will be a meeting at the airport terminal on Saturday at 10 a.m. to brief everyone on tower operations and give them a chance to meet the controllers.