Oct. 8, 2015

The Charlotte, NC-area Metroplex Project continues, with a goal of enhancing the safety and efficiency of the airspace by utilizing performance-based navigation procedures, in addition to optimizing the air traffic sectorization at the local FAA facilities.

The Charlotte project will be implemented in phases divided by specific geographical areas. The first phase will focus on the Northwest portion of the airspace, and will be implemented on Oct. 15. The second and third phase will shift focus to the Northeast, with expected implementation in May 2016, and the South, with expected implementation in July 2016.

The project should be completed in January 2017.

Phase One: (Northwest Airspace) – Oct. 15, 2015 implementation


  • Specific to Charlotte International Airport (CLT)
  • Replaces JOHNS STAR
  • Optimized Profile Descents (OPDs)

Conventional STARs – LIINN and BTSEY

  • For arrivals into CLT, AFP, AKH, DCM, EHO, EQY, IPJ, LKR, UZA and N52
  • Replaces SHINE STAR
  • BTSEY for turbojets only
  • LIINN for turbojets only on VXV transition
  • LIINN for turboprop and prop only on HMV and SOT transitions


  • For departures out of CLT, AKH, EQY, IPJ, JQF, LKR, RUQ, UZA and VUJ
  • BOBZY SID replaces ZAVER SID
  • ESTRR SID replaces DEBBI SID

View the FAA’s Charlotte Metroplex presentation. (PDF)

Operational Impacts During Phase One Initialization

During the first two weeks of implementation

  • Reduced arrival rates at CLT
  • Expected increase in mile in trail restrictions from adjacent enroute centers
  • Use of TBFM within Atlanta Center and adjacent enroute facilities to CLT

Pilot Emphasis Items for “Descend Via” and “Climb Via” Procedures

  • Descend Via: If ATC previously assigned a speed to maintain, then later issues a descend via clearance, the previous speed restriction is cancelled and all published speeds are mandatory.
  • Bottom Altitude: A descend via clearance is to the last “published” altitude on the “STAR” and is not a clearance to fly any altitudes on an instrument approach procedure until cleared for the approach, or visual approach.
  • Initial Climb Via SID clearance: Do not climb above the published top altitude, even if there are higher altitude constraints, until receiving an ATC clearance to do so.
  • Correct Phraseology: ATC needs to hear the readback of the “Descend Via” or “Climb Via” clearance. Correct phraseology is imperative. Read back a descend via clearance verbatim. Abbreviated or clipped phraseology is not acceptable.
  • On initial contact with ATC on a descend via clearance, state
    • 1. Aircraft/flight Identification
    • 2. Current altitude
    • 3. Descending Via
    • 4. Name and number of STAR
    • 5. Runway transition, if issued (Landing North/South, Runway 01/19)
    • 6. ATIS

Contingency Plans – For aircraft unable to accept new RNAV procedures, Conventional SIDs and STARs remain available.

Review NBAA’s Climb Via/Descend Via resources.