The FAA announced last week that it dedicated a new control tower at LaGuardia Airport (LGA). It replaces the current traffic control tower that was put up in 1964. LaGuardia is obviously a very busy airport that handled more than 400,000 takeoffs and landings last year in 2010. The U.S. Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood, in a statement indicated:
“LaGuardia Airport plays an important role in our country’s aviation infrastructure,” said Lahood. “This modern tower will help enhance the safety and efficiency of air travel in and out of the New York metropolitan area.”
It is reported that the tower will be equipped with the latest aviation technology, including the Airport Surface Detection System Model X (ASDE-X), which allows controllers to track surface movement of aircraft and vehicles. Controllers will also be using the Integrated Control and Monitoring System (ICMS), which consolidates information including navigational aid displays into one screen.
FAA Administrator, Randy Babbitt stated in a release:
“Today marks a culmination of years of hard work by many people both inside and outside the FAA,” said Babbitt. “This tower symbolizes the direction the FAA is taking by transforming the future of aviation with new technology.”
Some of the specifications of the new tower include that the new 233-foot high tower is 82 feet higher than the previous tower and has an 850 square foot tower cab. The total cost to design, equip, and construct the new tower was approximately $100 million.