Routes – departures and arrivals

How we intend to use our airspace in the future

Because the new route designs are largely unchanged, it is likely that most people won’t notice any significant change.  In fact, one of the main aims for the design team is to limit the number of people being overflown wherever possible.

If you live directly underneath, or close to, an existing flight path, it’s possible you could notice some changes but we expect these to be very small.


Currently, aircraft travelling to North America, Northern Europe, or the Far East have to fly away from their destination before turning back to the east or west. We have therefore proposed two new departure routes from the airport, one taking aircraft east towards Northumberland and the other taking aircraft west towards Kintyre.

For the departures from runway 30 the current conventional procedures turn to the south at a point approximately 1,500 metres from the end of the runway. The current design criteria prohibit the turn point from being defined any closer than 1,950 metres from the end of the runway. We have therefore placed the new turn point at this new location. The result of this change is that aircraft travel further over the water and are therefore slightly higher when they cross the shore resulting in less noise impact on the ground, but a slight increase in CO2 emissions.

For the departures from runway 12 the current conventional procedures to the southwest directly overfly Drongan. We are proposing a new route for departures to the west and southwest that turns slightly earlier and passes between Drongan and Hillhead. This route is approximately 5km shorter than the current route, reducing the environmental emissions, and the number of people below the route impacted by noise.


The new arrival flight paths we have designed replicate the existing routes as closely as possible with the addition of modern “T-Bar” tracks.  These allow aircraft arriving from any direction to fly a stable approach path without having to make any extreme turns.

We are also proposing new arrival routes that take aircraft from the arrival points to the start of an appropriate “T-Bar” track. These routes are designed to keep aircraft over the water or open countryside as much as possible.

Further details on each route are available in the consultation document.