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Cleveland Hopkins International Airport

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Continent: North America Country: United States Region: Ohio


Cleveland Hopkins International Airport
Location Cleveland, Ohio
IATA code CLE
ICAO code KCLE
Airport type Public
Website http://www.clevelandairport.com/
Overview map Google Maps
Communications
Tower 120.9 6R/24L 10/28 273.45 135.225 06L/24R
Ground 121.7 RY 6R/24L & 10/28 133.6 RY 06L/24R 273.4
Clearance 125.2 120.9
Approach 124.0 RY 06R/24L, RY 28 126.55 RY 06L/24R, RY 10 354.025
Departure127.85 118.15 057-236 128.25 237-056 346.325
ATIS 127.85 132.375
Departure122.95


Cleveland Hopkins International Airport is the primary commercial airport serving Cleveland and the surrounding Northeast Ohio area. It is the busiest airport in Ohio. Located approximately 9 miles southwest of downtown Cleveland, CLE handles all of the area's commercial flights, as well as some GA flights and sports charters. It is one of ten hubs for United Airlines.

The airport recognizes spotters and a local aviation site OPShots.net, but often requests that spotters remain 10 feet from the fence, however this isn't always strictly enforced. The airport serves the United States, Canada, Mexico, The Dominican Republic and Puerto Rico. The airport has three runways: two main parallel runways 6L/24R and 6R/24L, and 10/28, a shorter EMAS equipped runway. Burke Lakefront Airport and Cuyahoga County Airport operate as the airport's reliever airports.

Official Spotting Locations

100th Bomb Group

Delta 717 on final approach to 24R, photographed from the 100th Bomb Group

The 100th Bomb Group Restaurant is located off of Brookpark Road near the River Edge shuttle lot. It is accessible by both car and airport shuttle bus. At this location, all inbound-inflight traffic using 24R and 24L are visible, as well taxiing departures using Bravo and Sierra. This is a good location for flights as they lift off 6R and 6L, too. This spot is good for the majority of the day, however at sunset the sun reflects on terminal and airport administration offices below the tower. This location is close to Runway 10/28, but this runway is rarely used. A cool feature at this site are the replica P-51Ds.

Other Spotting Locations

Smart Parking Garage and Departures drive

United A320 737 taxiing in, photographed from the departures drive

Located off of the departures drive, just a few steps outside of the terminal, this area is a great spot for taxiing United Airlines and Air Canada Jazz aircraft, as well as aircraft parked at Concourse C and D. This spot is good for takeoffs using 24R and 24L, especially as they pass the control tower. A car is advised against for this location. There are fences that may get a little in the way, but the ramp is above them so they shouldn’t be much bother. The Smart Parking Garage offers a great vantage point of the airport, higher up. Security does do patrols and may ask you to leave. The garage is located across from the airport terminal, and there is covered walkway that covers the short walk between the two.

Aerospace Parkway

Aerospace Parkway runs around 6L and 6R. This allows for nice landing shots, as well as takeoff shots with a good lens. Parking is limited, however there are some small areas one can pull in and leave their vehicle, provided they don't go far. The businesses on the Parkway do not like people using their lots. The road leads to the MetroParks.

Postal Road

Postal Road offers a lot of different vantage points. There is a view of FedEx's ramp, as well as a view of the new TRACON and ATCT. Aircraft parked outside of United Airlines' and Constant Aviation's hangars can be seen. Taxiing aircraft on Kilo heading past the ARFF facility can also be seen. This is also a vantage point for Pad-7, where all large VIP traffic parks. Occasionally shots of corporate jets can be taken when outside of their hangars. This is also a good spot for unscheduled cargo flights.

Yemenia Airlines VIP 747SP, 7O-YMN seen on Pad-7 off of Postal Road at CLE.

Locations to Avoid

DHL Global Forwarding

DHL Global Forwarding is a nice location for taxiing aircraft but only if no one is around, as no spotting signs are posted.

All businesses on Aerospace Parkway

Aerospace Parkway is a great area to spot, however parking is limited. Do not park in the lots at the businesses.

NASA

This is a federal government property, and is a secure location. Security will stop anyone. There are cameras all over. However if you stay on the left side of the road, on foot good shots can occasionally be taken when a NASA plane or other government plane is on the ramp, but it's a bit of a walk from the River Edge facility, and again security is tight.

UPS Cargo

UPS has a fence around its property, and its hard to get a great vantage point, but employees will stop photographers on their property.

Regular Traffic

Please note that all times listed in this section are approximate. Spotters visiting CLE should consult a flight tracker for exact and up-to-date information.

Passenger

  • Air Canada Jazz: Air Canada Jazz operates three daily Dash 8 flights on weekdays, and two daily on weekends with service to Toronto-Pearson. Weekday flights typically arrive at 10:00am, 5:25pm, and 9:35pm and depart at 6:30am, 10:25am, and 5:50 pm. Weekend flights depart CLE at 6:30am, and 5:50pm and arrive at 5:25am and 9:35pm.
  • American Airlines: American operates its new Airbus A319 to CLE as well as the occasional MD-80, for a service to its hub at Dallas Forth Worth.
    • American Eagle: American Eagle operates flights throughout the day to Chicago–O'Hare, Miami, New York–JFK and New York–LaGuardia. The flights are operated on either the CRJ-700 or the ERJ-145.
  • Delta Air Lines: Delta operates a varied narrow bodied fleet in Cleveland. Spotters may see the 717-200, 737-800, A319, A320, and MD-90 here. These aircraft serve Atlanta.
    • Delta Connection (Chautauqua Airlines): Chautauqua operates the ERJ-145, CRJ-700 and CRJ-900 with service to New York–LaGuardia and Detroit.
    • Delta Connection (Endeavor Air): Endeavor operates the ERJ-145, CRJ-700 and CRJ-900 on flights to Atlanta, Detroit, Minneapolis/St. Paul, New York–JFK and New York–LaGuardia.
    • Delta Connection (ExpressJet): ExpressJet operates the CRJ-700 and CRJ-900 on flights to Atlanta and Minneapolis/St. Paul.
    • Delta Connection (GoJet Airlines): GoJet operates the CRJ-700 and CRJ-900 on behalf of Delta Connection to Detroit and New York–LaGuardia.
    • Delta Connection (SkyWest Airlines): SkyWest operates the CRJ-700 and CRJ-900 on flights to Detroit and Minneapolis/St. Paul.
  • Frontier Airlines: Frontier operates its A320s at CLE, with services to Denver and Trenton, as well as seasonal flights to Cancun and Punta Cana.
  • Southwest Airlines: Southwest has the second largest presence at CLE after United. Southwest operates its 737-700s and -800s at Hopkins, regularly servicing Baltimore, Chicago–Midway and Nashville, and seasonally servicing Fort Myers, Las Vegas and Orlando.
  • United Airlines: United operates its eighth largest hub at CLE. It operates its narrow body aircraft throughout the day at CLE, including its A319s, A320s, 737s, and 757s. United Express operates roughly 85% of United's traffic via regional jet or propeller-driven/turboprop aircraft. The Express arms fleet includes Beech 1900s, Dash 8s, CRJ100s CRJ200s, CRJ700s, CRJ900s, ERJ135s, ERJ145s, ERJ170s, and ERJ175s.
    • United Express (Chautauqua Airlines) : Chautauqua Airlines operates one of its five hubs on behalf on United Express at CLE, linking many destinations on its ERJ145s. 13 of the ERJs are in United Express livery, 14 are unbranded.
    • United Express (CommutAir): CommutAir has its operation center and a large maintenance facility based at its CLE hub. The airline operates Dash 8s, and repairs them as well at its maintenance facility. Sometimes repairs done outside of the hangar such as engine overhauls can be seen.
    • United Express (ExpressJet): ExpressJet, the largest regional carrier in the world, operates a hub at CLE using CRJ200s, CRJ700s, CRJ900s, ERJ135s, and ERJ145s, they also operate a maintenance facility repairing ERJ135 and 145s.
    • United Express (Republic Airlines): Republic Airlines operates at CLE with its Dash 8s and ERJ170s.
    • United Express (Shuttle America): Shuttle America operates ERJ170s at CLE to a number of domestic destinations.
    • United Express (Silver Airways): Silver Airways operates as a hub at CLE as United Express. They service 5 cities from Hopkins via Concourse D. Silver operates Beech 1900s, the majority having been repainted in their new silver livery.
    • United Express (SkyWest Airlines): SkyWest services over 20 cities from its CLE hub, flying the CRJ100, CRJ200, CRJ700, and ERJ175. Occasionally a SkyWest livery jet can be seen.
    • United Express (Trans States Airlines): Trans States Airlines operates 28 ERJ145s at its CLE hub, servicing 12 destinations. Trans States' livery is seen often.
  • US Airways: US Airways operates its A319s, as well as the occasional 737, through Concourse A, destined for Charlotte.
    • US Airways Express (Air Wisconsin): Air Wisconsin operates CRJ200s on behalf of US Airways Express to Philadelphia.
    • US Airways Express (Mesa Airlines): Mesa Airlines operates CRJ900s to US Airways' hubs at Charlotte and Philadelphia.
    • US Airways Express (PSA Airlines): PSA Airlines operates its CRJ200s and CRJ700s to Charlotte.
    • US Airways Express (Republic Airlines): Republic Airlines operates its Dash 8s, E170s, and E175s to Charlotte and Philadelphia.

Cargo

A UPS 757 seen at CLE UPS. I was questioned by UPS and do not recommend this location.
  • FedEx Airlines: FedEx typically operates two A300-600 freighters to Indianapolis and Memphis. FedEx's 757s also serve CLE on occasion, especially during the holiday season.
    • FedEx Airlines Feeder (Mountain Air Cargo): Mountain Air Cargo operates the C208 Cargomaster to Erie. Rarely, an ATR42 or 72 services this flight.
  • UPS Airlines: UPS Airlines operates 757s, 767s or MD-11s to Louisville. The MD-11 is most common, followed by the 767, the 757 is most common during the holiday season.

Facilities and Transportation

Hotels

Some hotels within three miles from the airport include: Best Western Airport Inn & Suites, Radisson Cleveland Airport, La Quinta Inn Cleveland Airport West, Hilton Garden Inn Cleveland Airport, and Holiday Inn Express Cleveland Airport. The Sheraton Cleveland Airport Hotel is located across from the terminal, within walking distance. The hotel offers some views of the airport, but is a great spot right at the airport.

Parking

There is a Cell Phone Lot which offers free parking for attended vehicles. The lot provides views of Concourse D. The lot offers no other amenities other than the parking, but is not far from any facilities.

The airport offers on-site parking and valet services, as well. "The Smart Parking Garage" offers good spotting vantages.

Public Transportation

Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) Red Line provides public service to the airport. The line originates in downtown Cleveland with several stops including one on Brookpark Road, not far from the 100th Bomb Group, however a car is still recommended. Connections for the Red Line as well as the Blue and Green Line and buses can be made downtown. Airport parking shuttle buses from the terminal loop to nearby airport spotting locations. Hopkins Airport also operates its own CLE taxicab service, regularly operating up to a 40 mile radius.