ckfred
Topic Author
Posts: 4734
Joined: Wed Apr 25, 2001 12:50 pm

Weird Arrival Pattern At MDW 8/22

Thu Aug 23, 2012 5:40 am

I live near Interstate 355, between 63rd and 75th Streets. Normally, all of the Southwest planes that I see are departures heading west, at various altitudes based on the ORD pattern.

On 8/22, I saw a strange pattern all afternoon and evening. I've been seeing Southwest planes heading northeast at somewhat lower altitudes what I see for MDW departures. They first appear to be in the ORD arrival pattern for Runway 4R, but they are too far east to be in that pattern, and I've noticed some of the planes eventually make gradual turns to the east.

Over the years, I've seen some unusual arrival patterns, say when there are strong thunderstorm cells interfering with normal arrival patterns. But the weather was generally good, with only high thin clouds.

Anyone know why MDW was running such a strange pattern?
 
fghtngsiouxatc
Posts: 158
Joined: Sat Mar 14, 2009 8:33 pm

RE: Weird Arrival Pattern At MDW 8/22

Thu Aug 23, 2012 7:31 am

They were using 13C for part of today. They have to keep arrivals south of ORD airspace for separation, so that's probably what you saw. 4R/22L has been closed for the past 2 days, so MDW is out a major runway. The use of 13C is relatively rare, mostly because it's a PITA for pilots/controllers because of ORD traffic. The weirdest arrival pattern I've seen at MDW is ILS 4R circle to land 13C.
 
midway7
Posts: 146
Joined: Fri Aug 06, 2004 10:24 pm

RE: Weird Arrival Pattern At MDW 8/22

Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:30 am

Why is 22L / 4R closed? Just curious?

Arrivals on 13C I believe have to be coordinated with ORD when ORD is using 22L for departures (to the east) and possibly 4R for arrivals. Given the potential need for coordination with ORD, I think MDW tends to lien away from using 13C for arrivals.

Someone with better ATC knowledge in the Chicago airspace may have better insight.
 
B757capt
Posts: 1301
Joined: Mon Feb 09, 2004 7:11 am

RE: Weird Arrival Pattern At MDW 8/22

Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:52 am

Quoting fghtngsiouxatc (Reply 1):

Yes rare but one of the neatest approaches in aviation.
The views written by this user are in no manner the views of my employer and should not be thought as such.
 
fghtngsiouxatc
Posts: 158
Joined: Sat Mar 14, 2009 8:33 pm

RE: Weird Arrival Pattern At MDW 8/22

Fri Aug 24, 2012 6:06 pm

Quoting midway7 (Reply 2):
Why is 22L / 4R closed? Just curious?

All I know is they were doing some sort of construction on the 4R end of the runway. Lots of trucks and what not. It didn't look like they were repaving, though.

I can tell you that MDW will ONLY use 13C when the winds really favor it. They prefer to do 31C circle 22L, but if the ceilings are too low, sometimes they have no choice but to use 13C. They also occasionally use 13C at night when it's much quieter at ORD and MDW.
 
mcg
Posts: 746
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2003 11:49 am

RE: Weird Arrival Pattern At MDW 8/22

Fri Aug 24, 2012 6:11 pm

Quoting b757capt (Reply 3):
Yes rare but one of the neatest approaches in aviation.

I'm curious, please explain..