A Guide to the Many Runways at KORD

As a proud member of the KORD realism police, a very nice job on this! I fly out of KORD all the time (5+ times a year) Very comprehensive! Nice to see another KORD lover noting the correct runways! :)

Adding to respond to some of the responses above, very rarely will a heavy land on 27L/09R, recently they have started to shift there due to ORD21, but due to the residential area and ORD noise abutment plan of 2014, they requested that smaller planes only use the runway.

22R/04L will be used for night ops past 10:30 pm due to the only thing on the back end of the runway being a large train-yard, while the rest of the runways are surrounded by residential areas. You will notice that no Long-hauls depart past 12:00am (besides delayed flights) for that reason.

The A380-800 will only use 10C/28C because it si the only runway long and wide enough for it to safely operate on, however the A380 is seldom seen, BA used to fly it here but ended their service quite quickly and have reverted back to the 747 (pre-COVID) and the 787 post COVID.

4R was built for the harsh winter and summer storms we get here in the Midwest to ensure safe landing runway, heavies will takeoff and land here if absolute needed, you will notice most of the time they will do a circle around Lake Michigan deconflict cross traffic.


Thank you for making this, I’m glad to see that so many people have taken a look at this and may now know the realistic procedures at ORD. As I also see u took in the mistakes and fixed them. Well done!


@Pilot_Felix gonna have to disagree with you real quick in the 27L part. I’ve seen planes as big as a Cargolux 747 on that runway!😂😁


I love when people make these. I will always sit through them and read the entire thing. They are always very interesting and entertaining to read. Keep up the work!


That’s a very nice guide on a well… confusing airport. Lots of runways, taxiways and gates for sure. Thanks for sharing!

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22R seems to available for a decent range of aircraft.

Today, a United 777-200 landed on 22R:


22L is taking landings right now. United 777-200 and Virgin Atlantic 787-9 just landed so it can take a wide range of aircraft.


Yeah the winds are insane. First time in many years that I’ve seen 22L be used for landings!

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What just happened. Anyone have an idea? A 28C takeoff.

United 787-9 ORD-LHR

Yes, Chicago today (Oct 17, 2020) received some terrible wind gusts at ground level, variable between 11 and 23 knots.

For that reason, KORD used 22L/R for almost very landing today, and most departures, excluding a select few heavies.

Due to the 22s being used, taxi procedures were changed as to avoid aircraft backlogs and therefore, 28C was used for some takeoffs.


Also, I know this is a very old post, but this is just simply not true.

There is a daily schedule Eva Air flight which departs around midnight (exact time changes based on summer/winter schedule plus/minus 15 mins) for Taipei, operated on their B77W. It frequently uses 28R or 10L, but does also occasionally see the center runways used as well!

Additionally, we used to have a Lufthansa b748 service to Frankfurt depart at 10:45pm during the summer schedule.

Oh my, thanks for catching my mistake! I meant 12:00! ORD has an ordinance about most commercial services passed 12:00 there is a long post on the FAA website I can fetch about that. I believe the EVA Air Flight Ian actually exempt from that. I haven’t checked that one out. Anyways, I will edit that, my deepest apologies!

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Sure enough, there are one or two flights to Mexico that also depart quite late!

There are a pair of Aeromexico flights for Guadalajara and Mexico City that take off near 1am.

Also, don’t forget about them cargo routes! These operate all through the night!

No worries and no hard feelings! 🙂

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During normal times, we would get an Asiana 777 too which departs at 12:50. I can say with confidence that long hauls do depart after 12. It’d be 1am and I’d hear a 747 bound for Atlanta or Indy roar overhead. Some 747s depart for Anchorage too between 12 and 6


Yes! Viva Aerobus am definitely Volaris operate some night flights, pretty cool! Since these are on A320’s I belvieve the ordinance doesnt follow because some regional flights also operate past midnight. Also, the cargo ops at KORD is wonderful at night, they also follow stringent policies, quite the sight!

Today was also quite the sight for ohare. Using the 22’s and 28C was sure a special treat!

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These are mostly all Cargo Flights. They follow different ordinances under the ORD noise ordinances

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Correction. Before Asiana completely suspended services to O’Hare, they’d depart late at night

Correction again. Asiana had a Scheduled time of dep was 2355, but they’d usually depart late

My apologies

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Yes, that was a really nice service! I was sad to see them go. I remember looking up at it when it was in pattern for landing on 28C over the summers (they arrived in the evening around 6-7pm) when I was working in Chicago! I could instantly spot it with their vibrant B772.

Guess Korean Air will have to do 🤷🏽‍♂️


I think what screwed them over was how late they departed. United’s afternoon arrival pool is around 5pm, which means that if the passengers were to connect onto the asiana flight, they’d be at the airport for 7 hours. I don’t know any non-avgeek who would want to wait that long for a flight

Being a Chicagoan, 28L is never used. 28R/10L is actually used for landings at night (most of the time, sometimes they keep it 28C/10C) due to a change of a config, and also noise reduction. They use that runway typically from 10pm-5am before switching back to 28C or the regular config. They will also use 28R when the weather is extreme like shear. The heavies will need that. 9L is used for departures to the east and north on east flow, 10L is used for heavies, south, and west. 28L will start to be used for landings once runway 27C/9C is opened in November. This will mean the primary departure runways will be 28R/10L and 9R/27L (which will also be extended). 27C will be used for landings.

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