Air Traffic Control:

Status of FAA's Effort to Modernize the System

RCED-90-146FS: Published: Apr 17, 1990. Publicly Released: Apr 17, 1990.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the status of the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) National Airspace System Plan (NAS), focusing on the: (1) overall status of the program; and (2) program's 12 major systems' projected cost and schedule as of January 1990.

GAO found that: (1) FAA had completed 28 projects, or about 32 percent of all NAS projects, but the completed projects represented only 4 percent of total NAS costs; (2) FAA had not remedied delays it experienced in the 12 major systems; (3) FAA made two additional NAS changes, which increased the estimated NAS cost to nearly $24 billion; (4) original NAS projects accounted for about 55 percent of the total number of air traffic control (ATC) modernization programs; (5) from fiscal year (FY) 1982 to FY 1989, FAA received about $7.2 billion in appropriations for ATC modernization; and (6) due to its high level of unobligated funds, FAA planned to increase facilities and equipment appropriations and obligated balances.

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