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August 06, 2015 // Facility Spotlight: Atlanta Center

Atlanta Air Route Traffic Control Center (ZTL) is a level 12 facility responsible for 104,000 square miles of airspace. Administrator Elwood Quesada of the newly named Federal Aviation Agency under President Dwight Eisenhower commissioned this facility, in Hampton, Ga., in 1960.

ZTL works in conjunction with 17 TRACONs and five other centers. ZTL primarily works ingress and egress traffic into and out of the Atlanta and Charlotte, N.C., metropolitan areas. Additionally, ZTL is a major throughway for en route traffic north and south and to and from the northeast corridor.

“One of the most significant events affecting ZTL annually is the Masters Golf Tournament in Augusta, Georgia,” explains ZTL NATCA Vice President Dub Pearman. “This event is held the first week of April and creates the largest influx of general aviation traffic of the year.”

During periods of significant weather, ZTL frequently works off-load playbook routings in addition to their normal traffic.

NATCA ZTL has 345 members and had an annual traffic count of over 2.9 million operations for 2014.

“Our last solidarity event was held on August 4 at Turner Stadium, in coordination with Atlanta TRACON, Atlanta Tower, and Dekalb Peachtree/Atlanta ATCT, for an afternoon of tailgating prior to watching the Atlanta Braves take on the San Francisco Giants,” Pearman says.

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