|ATC flow delays are a result of the airport capacity being reduced to roughly 30 arrivals per hour from 60+ due to the 05/23 closure. When demand exceeds capacity on a routine basis, obviously halving the acceptance rate will lead to delays.
The situation is no different than a restaurant with 30 tables, but 70 parties show up to eat. An ATC provided ground delay program is desirable because, rather than a huge lineup outside (airborne holds), the restaurant traffic controller tells people to not leave home until a certain time, so when they arrive they get a table right away. Since people don't leave home exactly to the second they were assigned, and their time enroute to the restaurant varies because of traffic, red lights, etc, a small lineup at the door is desirable because, the minute a table is free, the new group can be seated, and no table slots are wasted.
The ground delay program allocates delays equally among all users who are filed into the program. These delays on the ground save fuel, airtime, etc., and the pilots/dispatchers can plan proper fuel, consolidate flights, manage duty day issues, etc.
The GTAA has published it's own protocol because it owns the airport and operates it as it sees fit. They dictate preferential runways due to noise abatement during night operations, but in terms of runway assignment for minimizing delay, that is driven primarily by the airline customers. Don't like a 25 kt crosswind component and want rwy 33? Talk to your company who demands an east west configuration to minimize delays.
How does it work in the US? Is it a bit different because they have "corporate airports" and "airline airports"?
Bizav flying to the corporate airports encounter demand rarely approaches capacity and therefore less potential for delay.
Pratt X 3 wrote:
The airlines have been getting tons of flow delays with this construction as well and they have slots published 6 months in advance.
ATC slots are published "day of" when the GDP is issued.
I've never had any issue planning and going into any non-military airport in the USA. Unlike Canadians who see airports as a hassle and disruptive to their lives until they need their $299 all inclusive vacation, Americans, for the most part, view airports as a vital part of their local economy.
Obviously you haven't flown to the major airports when they are constrained due to construction or weather. Convective weather & Snow causes a GDP into ORD at least weekly. The NY 3 have GDPs several times a week. SFO GDP happens basically daily, where ground delays of 2-4 hrs are routine. LAX had construction all last summer and was the same as YYZ today. Keep in mind these US airports have much higher capacity than demand on a routine basis, whereas YYZ demand is regularly at maximum capacity for 4-5 hrs a day during the week. Even Augusta GA runs a GDP during the masters. And also keep in mind this is just speaking of GDPs. The local flow control for every center issues routine traffic departure delays (apreq) independent or on top of the GDP. Never flown YYZ to the eastern seaboard major airports? Ever notice the rj's holding near the deice bay with engines off and apu running waiting for an apreq time?
Frustrating is an understatement...we had 2 airplanes departing south Florida delayed by flow last week and I just learned of a second one tonight being delayed by flow and will have less than 15min window to meet the closing of their slot time. I just don't get it.
GDP slot times must be adhered to by the tower controller at the departure airport within +- 5 min.
Tried to leave YQB this morning. We took a 30 minute flow delay at 6 am on a Saturday.
I can only imagine the trouble you corporate guys are going through.
Lots of people wanted to eat breakfast at the yyz restaurant on Saturday, and you couldn't get a table until half an hour later.