The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has advised the Miami-Dade Aviation Department that the air traffic control tower at Opa-locka Executive Airport will remain open despite being previously scheduled for closure due to federal sequestration budget cuts.
The tower at Opa-locka Executive was among 189 contract air traffic control facilities the FAA proposed closing in early March to meet federal budget sequestration requirements. Instead, Opa-locka Executive was among 24 U.S. airports to have their towers kept open because they met the following criteria that were “in the national interest,” according to the FAA: Significant threats to national security as determined by the FAA in consultation with the Department of Defense or the Department of Homeland Security; significant, adverse economic impact that is beyond the impact on a local community; significant impact on multi-state transportation, communication or banking/financial networks; and the extent to which an airport currently served by a contract tower is a critical diversionary airport to a large hub. An additional 16 federal contract towers under the FAA’s “cost share” program will also remain open, according to the FAA.
As the reliever airport for Miami International Airport (MIA), the Opa-locka Executive tower handled more than 108,000 flight operations in 2012, including U.S. Coast Guard helicopter and jet aircraft, Miami-Dade Police and Fire-Rescue helicopters, corporate jet aircraft and private single-engine propeller aircraft.
Opa-locka Executive offers full Fixed Base Operator (FBO) service, a wide range of aircraft repair and maintenance services, including airframe, power plant and avionics repair, flight school training and U.S. Custom and Border Protection service on the airfield.