Air Traffic Control Committee

CABAA ATC Committee is working in conjunction with the FAA to improve the efficiency of flying to and from the satellite airports in the Chicago area as well as informing transient pilots of the tips and procedures of flying in and out of the complicated Chicago airspace. The Committee is chaired by Mark Zakula. Use our contact form to connect with Mark.

The Committee members have been meeting with key members of the FAA since early 2004. Through on-site meetings, teleconferences, or over the phone the Committee represented business and general aviation concerns directly to those in the FAA who are responsible for the airspace around the Chicago area.

2023 Goals

With the city restricting a lot of in-person activities in the last few years because of Covid, the committee has not been able to meet with the FAA representatives. When issues are conducted over email and phone, we cannot seem to get the attention and results that we desire. Below are the issues we have been working on and will continue to press the FAA to address them. A couple of accomplishments that we have obtained are the RNAV 16 “T” approach waypoints, adding HIGUH to the EXARR arrival, and the KMDW class C redesign that should be published in the next 6 months. Because of staffing, the FAA has eliminated a few committees that addressed a lot of the below issues. We will have to re-establish our contacts as many of them have retired in the last few years.

  • EXARR Arrival – The route into the North Satellite airports (MACES-VINNE-BRAVE-EXARR) is being put into a STAR.  A couple of fixes over the lake will be added to aid in a “descend via” arrival. This arrival will also be used for KMKE, KUGN, KRAC, and KENW airports.  Currently when you file this route you can now add HIGUH after EXARR if you go to KPWK. MKE approach will now send you there instead of Chicago TRACON

  • GOPAC Arrival – This arrival currently exists for KMKE and KUGN.  KPWK will be added to the GOPAC with a clearance to DREWD at 12,000’.  Once handed off to MKE approach, KUGN traffic will be vectored direct to KUGN and KPWK traffic will be vectored direct to HIGUH.  It will eventually be a STAR.

  • FIYER Arrival – This arrival currently goes over PMM and then to FIYER with a corssing at 3000 or 4000’. The plan is to not use the PMM VOR.  (they are currently using SMUUV instead of PMM). Fixes will be added between SMUUV and FIYER with crossing altitudes for a “descend via” arrival to avoid ORD traffic. It will eventually be a STAR.

  • West Departures – When the West routes out of Chicago were constructed, we were told that they would eventually be SID’s. When they removed the ORD VOR for runway construction, that idea was put on the back burner.  The ORD VOR has nothing to do with the North Satellite airports.  We are still fighting to have them converted to SID’s for those airports.

  • North and East Departures – The FAA has a plan to create both and East departures utilizing the fixes they currently assign to those routes.

  • ILS 16 at KPWK – We have a request to add HIGUH to the ILS 16 for commonality.

  • RNAV 34 to KPWK – This request was re-addressed to TRACON and the designers.  It will save time and prevent Opposite Direction Operations (ODO’s).  The ATC committee has submitted a few designs that have been rejected because of the city of Lake Forest.  There is currently a private RNAV 34 approach to KPWK, but the public is not allowed to utilize it.  This approach will be our basis for moving forward.



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