Pacific
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Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 10:50 pm

I flew from Narita yesterday and the plane taxied to the further runway despite the fact that the old runway was also being used for some departures. As you can see in the picture below, we took an extremely long route and we finally took to the air more than 35 minutes after pushback.

I just have to keep wondering...why? A CX 1st officer made a half sarcastic comment about farmers when he saw this...


 
CX Flyboy
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:12 pm

Pacific, May I ask what airline and flight number you were on?

It was/is indeed the farmers that are restricting the growth of Narita. On the right of your picture, you can see the farm that is in the middle of where the runway should be. Because of this farm, and the laws in Japan that cannot force the farmer to sell the land, the 2nd runway is not as long as the airport authorities would like, and is restricted to certain aircraft types only.

When the 2nd runway (Actually the 3rd...they abandoned the 2nd one half built because of another farmer) opened, the new slots that became available were given out for the use of that runway only, and therefore in a strange sort of way, the two runways are operated almost as if they are two seperate airports. The pilots cannot request the other runway if they so wish. if your flight was one assigned to use the short runway, then the long taxi is what you unfortunately have to suffer.
 
Pacific
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:17 pm

Wow, now that I look closely at the picture, I can see where the 2nd runway was supposed to be! Good Job to Microsoft!

Guess what, I was on the beloved Cathay Pacific Airways flight 521, a lovely A330 Big grin

Thank you for the clarification on this issue.
 
TokyoNarita
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:21 pm

Chances are good if you are on a shorthaul (say within Asia) B777 or smaller you will be assigned the short runway for takeoff. The long runway is tightly slot restricted for longhauls that requires the length.
 
CX Flyboy
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:30 pm

One more thing, Pacific. If you look at your picture, you will see the left/right diagonal runway that was originally destined to be the 2nd runway!

As for CX521, it is a newish flight that is assigned by the authorites to use the shorter runway and for that reason, the 777-300 is never assigned to the flight.
 
N228UA
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:37 pm

All us spotters at Narita can thank the farmers for the massive fence around the airport as well.

Maybe the farmer loves aviation and doesn't want to move!
 
jsnww81
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:40 pm

It is unreal to think that a handful of farmers have Narita hamstrung to the degree they do.

At least they finally opened the second runway... a pathetic 6500-foot runway that can only handle two-holers. The runway is supposed to be 10,000 feet long, and the second part of it has already been completed. The middle third of it, however, is taken up by a farm.

Last I heard the Japanese government was still negotiating with this farmer, in the hopes that someday NRT can have two full-length runways. The third diagonal crosswind runway has been abandoned forever - it will be used only as a taxiway.

Such a shame. If only someone could go back in time to the late 1960s and convince the Japanese government not to waste their time with NRT.
 
Carfield
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:43 pm

Well since CX 521 is the additional flight opened up due to the new runway, it has to use that new runway for takeoff and landing everyday except weather situation-- in addition to some short haul aircraft... when I flew Asiana into AA), Japan">NRT from ICN, our OZ 767 used the new runway as well. Even some United/AA Boeing 777s landed at that new runway, I flew in on an AA flight from DFW once. I was surprised that we used the shorter new runway... the pilots stepped hard on the brake after touching down and we used the whole runway. What an experience!

Carfield
 
JoFMO
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Mon Aug 02, 2004 11:54 pm

I landed last year on the new runway with an OS A340 from VIE. We only had to taxi to T2, but even that took a while.

Like you can see the taxiway parallel to the new runway is not straight and becomes too near to the runway. So we couldn't taxi on to the terminal and had first to wait for another two landings on runway2 before we could move on.

Does anyone know how long runway2 is and what aircrafts it can handle?
 
TokyoNarita
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 12:00 am

You can expect continuous Haneda growth in the next five years or so.

The new terminal in Haneda will open in December. The new runway contruction plan is underway expected to be ready by 2009...The Japanese will have to allow more international traffic out of Haneda because of its convenience..and this will not only be limited to Korea but also probably Hong Kong, Mainland China, Taiwan and Guam etc.

Continuous effort has been made to expand the short runway to about 9000-10000 ft range but just don't know how long this is going to take.

TokyoNarita

 
TokyoNarita
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 12:13 am

Typically..

RWY 16L/34R (Short)

Takeoffs: Shorthauls B777/B767/A300 and smaller.
Landings: All landings A340/A330/B777 and smaller.

No MD11s, DC10s and B747/744s.

Subject to other limitations.

TokyoNarita.
 
jsnww81
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 3:13 am

TokyoNarita makes a good point... the expansion that Haneda has undergone in the past decade is nothing short of amazing... basically, an entirely new airport was built on reclaimed land adjacent to the old one. Now why couldn't the government have done this back in the 1970s?

Is HND actually getting a fourth runway? I had read about plans to build a 'floating' runway on pontoons further out in Tokyo Bay, but that there was considerable opposition since it would impact some shipping lanes. Is work going to start on this new runway?

I have not seen any construction updates on HND's new East Terminal, but had heard it would be exclusively for ANA/ANK flights. Is that still the plan?
 
JoFMO
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 4:03 am

Has anybody an good internet side about Haneda expansion projects?
 
NWADC9
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 5:45 am

What selfish farmers. They could easily move their plants to new farmland, thus letting Narita being able to maybe even serve THEM better by leaving earlier.
Flying an aeroplane with only a single propeller to keep you in the air. Can you imagine that? -Capt. Picard
 
Klaus
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 6:51 am

The ZDF Auslandsjournal had an interesting segment about the farmers living on the airport:

Text article: ZDF.de - Leben am Limit

You can watch the entire video through the "VIDEO" link on the right.

It´s in german only, but I guess you can get an impression even if you don´t understand the commentary.


The problem apparently was that the government simply tried to push the farmers out of the way - there was no public process and no warning. And the farmers - supported by many students and citizens - refused to simply give in. The farmers won´t budge, and so this bizarre situation has endured.

Classic case of a deadlock between incompetent and overreaching bureaucrats on one side and recalcitrant citizens on the other...
 
BandA
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 7:15 am

everytime i have flown on JAL B743 (JL17/18) or M11 (JL471/472) they have always taxied that long at Narita... not complaining though... the more time spent on a aircraft the better :P
"They [Terrorists] never stop thinking about new ways to harm our country and our people, and neither do we." - GWB
 
je89_w
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 7:30 am

Interesting picture of NRT from the air! Never realized how long the taxi is, I've only been on the new runway once but from T2.
 
AJ
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 8:46 am

We depart from Narita B for our 7 hour flights to Cairns in the 767, hardly short haul!
 
spacecadet
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 11:24 am

What selfish farmers. They could easily move their plants to new farmland, thus letting Narita being able to maybe even serve THEM better by leaving earlier.

Which Japan is this that you're talking about??

"easily move to new farmland"? What new farmland? This is Japan. Pretty much every inch of arable land is already in use, nationwide. And most farms are passed down through the generations. It's not as if you can just go out and buy another farm 2 doors down... and this farm has probably been in the family for a long time (I don't know anything about these people specifically, I'm just speaking based on my own experience with Japanese farmers).

The NAA asking these farmers to move is akin to asking them to give up their livelihoods. Now, they could offer them a huge payout that would be more money than they'd ever make in their lives, but I mean, come on. First of all, they didn't do this originally - they just told them to move. Second, you're asking people to change their whole lifestyle, move to a new home somewhere else, etc. The farms were there first, and just as I think people who move next to existing airports don't really have a right to complain about noise, I don't think the government or anyone else has a right to complain about farmers who choose to live their lives the way they always have. Narita Airport was built on farmland; these farms weren't built on Narita Airport.

The people to blame for Narita are the government officials who decided to build the airport without knowing whether or not they've got enough land for expansion, and without even consulting residents in the area. Really stupid planning, and appalling arrogance. I mean it's one thing if you've got an airport like JFK with four long intersecting runways; then you don't need to worry so much about expansion. But there's no way these people thought they could get away with a single runway in Tokyo forever; they must have known they'd need to build a new runway or two at some point. They thought they could just take whatever land they needed, but the farmers stopped them. How do you blame the farmers for this? Blame the government for poor planning, which they're now reaping the rewards of today.
I'm tired of being a wanna-be league bowler. I wanna be a league bowler!
 
Carpethead
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 12:46 pm

Also include A-runway limited traffic to 773 and 346. Not sure if 345 qualifies as no one has yet to try a run with a 345. AC was supposed to do a YYZ-AA), Japan">NRT run last year but now it’s going to HKG, which is more appropriate anyways.

There are now two runways at AA), Japan">NRT and though the main runway (A) at AA), Japan">NRT is slot retrained. The shorter runway (B) can handle many more movements and by switching the 777/763 & shorter-haul aircraft from the A-runway slots to the B-runway, paving the way for more long-haul and 747-type aircraft on the A-runway. This is why AA is able to add flights due to shifting the landings on the B-runway and use the A-runway for take-offs only. AA had 28 slots on the A-runway and if the authorization for the AA), Japan">NRT-HNL goes ahead, AA should be just about maxed out on these slots. As for NW expanding such as the AA), Japan">NRT-CAN route, the 757s can be easily handle the B-runway. If more 747 routes/frequencies are to be added, they can shift the new 332s to the B-runway as necessary freeing up the A-runway slots.
Pilots can request to land on the A-runway when necessary, weather, aircraft problems, etc. Departures are rigidly enforced though. I have landed on B-runway on an AA 777, TK 343, & UA 777 for large aircrafts, and the breaking is hard but the aircraft, for the obvious reason, comes to a slow speed without problems. In the case of AA and UA, we landed to the south so the taxi times weren’t too long, and for aircraft going to Terminal 2 it’s much quicker to land on the B-runway anyways. There are occasionally times when pilots do request the B-runway, although they have A-runway slots because they are going to Terminal 2.

There is also talk of extending the B-runway to 2500 meters (currently at 2,180) on the north side, so it can handle all types aircraft, but this is still years away from fruition.
The picture above is probably some two or three years old as the taxiways between Terminal 1 & 2 have now been completed. Anybody who sits in a window seat on aircraft between Terminal 1 & 2 and around AA), Japan">NRT, you can see the farmers who block construction of additional runway or runway lengthening. There is now a home sandwiched in between taxiways! It’s just north of the hangers. You can’t miss it. Most of the land is bought but just a handful of farmers owning just a few acres are blocking its construction.

In Japan, local politicians and industrialists promote airport development as they are economic driver (just like the rest of the world), so NIMBYs are very rare in this country except the two most constrained places (AA), Japan">NRT & HND). To understand the situation at Narita, a book can be written (I think it has in Japanese though). Its unique history dates back to the 1960s when politicians on a whim announced an int’l airport at Narita (on the current site) without consulting the locals. This pent-up resentment still resides today and it still has a beefed up security compared to other Japanese airports due to the radical elements surrounding or on the airport.
 
NWAatNGO
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 12:57 pm

Since NW started their NGO-NRT flights, I have landed on and taken off from this shorter runway a number of times. The landing part isn't too bad, but let me tell you the 20-25 minute taxi after flying across the Pacific does get to be a little much.

I have lived in Japan for a number of years and knew that there were issues with the farmers around NRT, but on a recent landing on the new runway, I saw a big sign in English and Japanese that read, 'Down with Narita Airport'. I got a real kick out of the sign, because Japanese people don't tend to make such bold statements. I also got a kick out of the one house that sits smack dab in the middle of the airport. The next time I fly through there I will try to take a picture and let everyone see.

And for purely selfish reasons, Down with Narita and Up with Chubu.

Later all,

NWA at NGO
 
Pacific
Topic Author
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 1:14 pm

Wow...this is a very deep issue indeed. Keep the good discussion going!

Just for your info, that picture is from FS2004, default scenery.
 
N228UA
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 3:32 pm

My wife told me the other day that the Japanese royal family used to own a lot of land around Narita which is why they built the airport there instead of somewhere else. The Emperor donated the land to the government.

There was a piece on the news about the police doing riot training before the world cup...They showed people carrying telegraph polls ramming the riot police. I asked if this was a drill and no, it was the farmers ramming the police at Narita before construction commenced.

This is a very sensitive issue, both for the farmers due to their land and for travelers as Narita is damn far from Tokyo. Why don't they put in a shinkansen line?

[Edited 2004-08-03 08:33:12]
 
spacecadet
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 5:59 pm

Why don't they put in a shinkansen line?

There is an express train called the Narita Express. Here's the official page on it from the NAA web site: http://www.narita-airport.or.jp/airport_e/access/train/

Do a Google image search on Narita Express and you'll see a lot of pics.

A shinkansen would be a bit excessive; the N'Ex links to shinkansen in Tokyo.

It really is one of the most poorly-thought out airports in the world, though, including location and everything else. Anyone know what airport is furthest away from the city it serves? I would think Narita's gotta be up there on that list.

I've also always wondered about the real name of the airport. I sometimes see it referred to as "New Tokyo International Airport", but the only name you ever see on signs there is "Narita Airport" and the name of the authority that runs it is the Narita Airport Authority. The official web site also lists it as Narita Airport.

Is "New Tokyo International" strictly informational for overseas passengers? What is the real name of the airport? It's semantics, yeah, but it'd make at least a little more sense if it's intended as a regional airport rather than a Tokyo airport.
I'm tired of being a wanna-be league bowler. I wanna be a league bowler!
 
TokyoNarita
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Tue Aug 03, 2004 10:07 pm

Is "New Tokyo International" strictly informational for overseas passengers? What is the real name of the airport?

In April, this airport officially changed its name from "The New Tokyo.." to just "Narita International Airport."

TokyoNarita.

 
N6376M
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Wed Aug 04, 2004 12:13 am

Does Japan not have the concept of eminant domain?
 
Carpethead
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Wed Aug 04, 2004 7:36 am

No, there are no eminent domain laws in Japan. Hence, the predicament that airport is in.

The Shinkansen does not run to NRT, it was planned but again some residents on its path got in the way and only partly finished and probably never will. There is plans for the Keisei line (the local train carrier) to provide a faster service using that same proposed path for the Shinkansen but the time reduction will be only about 10 minutes down from one hour from central Tokyo.
 
Pacific
Topic Author
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Wed Aug 04, 2004 11:02 am

The current Skyliner doesn't do more than 105km/h on the straight parts current tracks and the current track is very twisty therefore it constantly has to accelerate in the straights, and brake for the corners. I don't know how fast the Narita Express does, since I never take it because of the hefty price tag.

The current situation is not very efficient yet still makes it to Ueno at around the same journey time as the Narita Express makes it to Tokyo, at 2/3 of the price.

Calling Narita "New Tokyo International" is a joke considering the location, "New Chiba International" would be more appropriate.
 
N228UA
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Wed Aug 04, 2004 9:54 pm

The Narita Express takes around 90 minutes from the airport to Tokyo station...not exactly express.
 
TokyoNarita
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Thu Aug 05, 2004 1:13 am

The Narita Express takes around 90 minutes

No way man! try 60..

http://www.narita-airport.or.jp/airport_e/access/train/

TokyoNarita
 
VonRichtofen
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Thu Aug 05, 2004 3:17 am

I took the Narita express from Tokyo station back in January. It took about 55 minutes.

About the topic: A couple years ago I flew from NRT to KHH on a NW A320 and I remember taxiing for what seemed to be an eternity. Now I know why  Smile I also remember taxiing by a big sign that read "DOWN WITH NARITA AIRPORT".

Kris

[Edited 2004-08-04 20:18:42]
 
spacecadet
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Thu Aug 05, 2004 3:27 am

No way man! try 60..

Yeah, this is not bad when you consider how far away Narita airport is. 40 miles is the distance I most often see cited, though that's as the crow flies. It's probably more like 50-60 track miles. So 60 minutes is not at all unreasonable.

Keep in mind that shinkansen don't run at full speed all of the time either. Through a lot of urban areas, shinkansen will only run at "normal" train speeds. I doubt a shinkansen would be much faster on this route (though it would be much more expensive to operate).

It's a lot better than driving. My in-laws live only about 10 miles from the airport and it usually takes us nearly 2 hours to get there, with the last mile accounting for about half that.
I'm tired of being a wanna-be league bowler. I wanna be a league bowler!
 
Carpethead
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RE: Taxiing At Narita...Why The Long Way?

Thu Aug 05, 2004 9:14 am

From HND to NRT, WHEN the roads are uncongested it takes just over one hour by bus.

Neither the JR or Keisei lines were designed for exclusive use to NRT. They use the existing tracks originating since post WWII for Keisei and pre-war for JR. Therefore the tracks aren't as straight and have to contend with the local trains running the route as well. Again as mentioned before, the proposed Shinkansen was halted.

The new Pudong airport in Shanghai is pretty far away from the city but the mag-lev trains take something like 20 minutes. I have used the airport but only taken the bus, so someone with better knowledge can back me up.

Shinkansen's limiting speed other than designed speed of the train is the track. If there are tighter turns, it has to slow down. The Shinkansen tracks in urban areas have tighter turns so hence slowdown and because they approach their destination too. Even when by-passing urban areas, they do not slowdown. Its speed it always between 270 to 300 kph (168 to 187 mph).