luisde8cd
Posts: 2444
Joined: Thu Aug 12, 2004 12:02 am

Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Mon Jan 17, 2005 6:01 am

Hey all,

It was recently announced to the public that Caracas City Airport (SVFM, a.k.a La Carlota Air Force Base) will be closed for fixed-wing aircraft operations. Starting Feb 12nd, only choppers will be allowed to operate to/from the airport. It will be a sad day in Venezuelan aviation to lose this important airfield and its convenient location in the heart of Caracas.

More info regarding the airport, click here:
http://www.airliners.net/discussions/general_aviation/read.main/1729980

I've decided to create a farewell pictorial tribute to my beloved "La Carlota" Airport.

Here's the airport right in the middle of my urban jungle:

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Photo © Javier Guerrero




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Photo © Javier F. Bobadilla - IBERIAN SPOTTERS
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Photo © LUIS A. GABALDON




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Photo © LUIS A. GABALDON
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Photo © Javier F. Bobadilla - IBERIAN SPOTTERS



Largest planes to ever operate to/from SVFM(that I know of):

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Photo © Peter Unmuth - VAP
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Photo © Juan Carlos Guerra Aviation Photography of Mexico



Personally I had the chance to watch the A319CJ land, it was a moment I'll never forget: I was stuck in traffic in one of Caracas's busiest avenues when I saw a white reflexion in a crystal office building, I turned my head and I saw this large A319CJ coming low for landing on runway 11, it was amazing!

Here's another large a/c that visited SVFM, it brought either president Pastrana or Gaviria to Caracas during the 90s:

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Photo © Juan David Cardona A.



Also during one of 1992's presidential coup attempts (leaded by current president Hugo Chavez, at the time he was a Lt. Col in the army) a goverment loyal F-16s shot down a rebel OV-10 "Bronco" over Caracas and the Bronco pilot managed to get his damaged bronco to the airport and crashed in the runway without causing damage to civilians. The pilot safely ejected and was later captured. Here's an OV-10 pic.

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Photo © Kristof Jonckheere

 
Venezuela747
Posts: 1374
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2004 9:36 am

RE: Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Mon Jan 17, 2005 6:40 am

Isn't La Carlota the main airport for the president and everything military. I remember when president Clinton visited Venezuela, unde Caldera's government, the official reception was at La Carlota ( he arrived a CCS and then a helicopter took him there) So what will the president and all the military opeartions use, I doubt they'd use CCS?
ROLL TIDE!!!
 
capri
Posts: 499
Joined: Sat Sep 20, 2003 1:32 am

RE: Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:09 am

No wonder it will close, look at that first picture, it looks like the buildings are taking over the airport.
 
pr1268
Posts: 223
Joined: Wed Dec 03, 2003 12:22 pm

RE: Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Mon Jan 17, 2005 7:19 am

Those images seem to indicate a real "nail-biter" of an approach!

Given the nature of the structures surrounding the runway, I kinda understand the government's (or whoever makes those decisions in Venezuela) reason for only allowing rotor aircraft there.

I do understand Luisde8cd's sadness, though. Neat pictures!
The only time an aircraft has too much fuel is when it is on fire.
 
mia
Posts: 813
Joined: Mon Mar 01, 2004 1:40 am

RE: Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Mon Jan 17, 2005 8:22 am

My apartment in Caracas is right in the path of the landing corridor. Those planes come in so close it is too dangerous. I hope they close down most of the stuff and free up the much needed real-estate.

The Universidad Bolivariana could use a campus there....
"Like all great travelers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen."
 
luisde8cd
Posts: 2444
Joined: Thu Aug 12, 2004 12:02 am

RE: Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Mon Jan 17, 2005 11:20 am

I hope they close down most of the stuff and free up the much needed real-estate.

Imbecile ideas had to come from people like you, as expected.... One of the few things that Chavistas like you and the opposition have agreed on is that after SVFM is closed they WILL NOT ALLOW the land to be used to build any kind of buildings. The plans are to make it a "vegetable lung" for Caracas, it will be a city park with many plants, trees, open spaces, public pools, etc... a place for us Caraqueños to spent our free time in tranquility.

The Universidad Bolivariana could use a campus there....
*sigh*...
 
VH320
Posts: 73
Joined: Sun May 14, 2000 4:01 pm

RE: Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Mon Jan 17, 2005 1:23 pm

I just remembered when La Carlota was full of piston airplanes. I did not live in Caracas, but everytime I went there, CCCT mall was a "must" stop to watch planes landing and taking off like crazy. Sunset time on Fridays was incredible. As many know, It's forbidden to fly VFR in Venezuela after sunset. Well, everybody was rushing to get in La Carlota. One time, I counted about 50 landings in one hour frame.
About how dangerous the airport is?? It's like many others. Has anyone seen the approach path to Quito Mariscal de Sucre airport in Ecuador where airplanes as big as MD11 go there in a frequent basis. What the real reason of LA carlota closure is, do not know. It is a convenient airport for Air ambulance. All I can say , it will be missed..
 
RogerThat
Posts: 505
Joined: Wed Dec 17, 2003 12:13 pm

RE: Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Mon Jan 17, 2005 2:20 pm

I have stayed at the Four Seasons in Caracas. My room had a magnificent view of the airport. Plane spotting from the comforts of your hotel room. It doesn't get any better. The approach looked hairy. Downwind leg below the mountains and tall buildings all around it. Kai Tak on the Caribbean.

Viva Chavez!

 
757MDE
Posts: 1451
Joined: Sat Sep 11, 2004 11:45 am

RE: Feb 12/2005: Sad Day In Venezuelan Aviation :(

Tue Jan 18, 2005 4:26 am

Another Airport like La Carlota is Olaya Herrera here in Medellín. Now it's limited to 50 pax aircraft, but in the old times even AV 747s used to land there.
Quisiera volveraamartevolveraquerertevolveratenertecerrrrcaademígirl! Mis ojos lloran porrr ti...

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