by Nathaniel Cook –
Highrise condos bring terrific views. Park Tower’s location and triangular footprint give it some of the best in the area, with stunning lake and urban perspectives. And as you may have noticed, we are also ideally situated for observing the flight paths of planes landing at O’Hare International Airport.
O’Hare is one of the largest and busiest airports in the country. In 2016 alone there were over 860,000 take offs and landings. O’Hare has eight runways, five of which are parallel to one another. Park Tower, though twelve miles distant, is situated right between two of these parallel east/west runways, 27L and 28R. Imagine for a moment ..
If we were to extend runway 27L east all the way to the lake, it would essentially overlap with Bryn Mawr Avenue. Do the same with runway 28R, and it would line up just north of Lawrence Avenue.
These two runways are just over a mile apart from each other and incoming flights from all directions are routed towards them.
As aircraft pass over Park Tower they are typically at an altitude of 3,500-4,000 feet, and the landing gear is either already deployed or going down, which is very interesting to see during the day.
At night, east-facing residents can see the planes “stacked up” in parallel lines like holiday lights strung between trees as they approach O’Hare. West-facing residents can see the planes descending in parallel until they disappear into the horizon as they land. Typically, you will see larger jets passing by to the south. This is because right now runway 28R is much longer than 27L. But there are plans to extend 27L to the same length as 28R, thereby enhancing O’Hare’s capacity and flexibility.
There is a lot going on in the skies around our community, and though we’re miles from the airport, we have first row seats to the show!
Nathaniel is a member of the Newsletter Committee.