IFATC at Home — London City Airport


IFATC at Home


This Sunday, the ‘IFATC at Home’ feature of the Expert Server’s weekly ATC schedule will return. Us controllers will be manning airports at our home countries — all around the globe. As a United Kingdom (UK) resident, my options are various! But, I’ll be opening London City Airport. When people see I’ve been unfaithful and have run to London Heathrow for a few hours… mind your own business.

London City Airport (LCY/EGLC) is an airport opened in 1987 nestled in the UK’s capital. The single-runway field is just 7 miles from the City of London. A hub for BA Cityflyer, this airport is primarily one for business travellers; however, it does boast some beautiful touristy destinations.

My connection

I live in London. To translate for tourists: I live in the only city in the UK — sorry, not the UK. England. Owning two homes in London, I split my time between St. John’s Wood (which is closer to Heathrow) and East Ham. As I write this, I am in the latter, which is only a ten-minute drive away from City Airport. It is one of the only two airports I have ever flown out from in London (the other being Heathrow) and is one frequented by me when heading into Europe. Its convenience is unparalleled and so is its uniqueness. In a city desperate for space, right in the middle… an airport!


London City Airport Information
London is the capital of the UK. With six airports (Yes reader, I agree — London Southend?!) serving the city, London City Airport predominantly serves the business traveller market with direct transport links to Central London and the City of London. There is one two-storey terminal at the airport. With no jetbridges, all boarding is done via walk-boarding. The airport is served by Air Antwerp, Alitalia, Blue Islands, British Airways, Eastern Airways, KLM, Loganair, LOT Polish Airlines, Lufthansa, Luxair, and Swiss Airlines. There is the capacity for GA operations (usually with privately-owned/chartered jets. The largest aircraft capable of operating at London City Airport is the Airbus A318 (used by British Airways for their London to New York — via Shannon, Ireland — route). There is a permanent TFR on the Expert Server detailing this.

The airport lays a few hundred metres from the newly-established NHS Nightingale built to handle the caseload of Covid-19 in London.

There is one runway (09/27) 4,900ft in length. The use of runway 27 requires a back taxi where aircraft can hold short after exiting onto a holding pad or takeoff immediately.


Runway Dimensions Heading (True) Elevation Surface
09/27 4914 x 98 ft 094 or 274 23 ft Asphalt
STARs, SIDs, and other charts

Please see here for details

Suggested Routes

Short Haul

This hop over to the continent is an incredibly short one. It connects this single-runway airport to one massive six-runway operation…

Route: London City to Amsterdam or Amsterdam to London City
Flight Time: 1 hour
Equipment: British Airways Embraer E190 or KLM Embraer E190


One of the de facto capitals of the European Union — small Luxembourg is landlocked between France, Germany, and Belgium. This makes it a financial centre for Europe and this route connects the two economic hubs.

Route: London City to Luxembourg or Luxembourg to London City
Flight Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Equipment: Luxair Bombardier Dash-8 Q400

Medium Haul

Has your holiday been ruined? Would you like to jet off to sunny Greece? Too bad. You can’t. Stay at home. But while you’re home, open up Infinite Flight and get to Skiathos, Greece!

Route: London City to Skiathos, Greece or Skiathos, Greece to London City
Flight Time: 3 hours 20 minutes
Equipment: British Airways Embraer E190

Long Haul

This route has adopted Concorde’s famous callsign: BA001 — or Speedbird 1. This incredible supersonic technological marvel lives on at London City Airport.

  • Route: London City to New York (via Shannon, Ireland) or New York to London City (non-stop)
  • Flight Time: 8 hours 10mins
  • Equipment: British Airways Airbus A318-100

The Covid-19 pandemic has hit London hard. As a resident of the city and someone who has been confirmed to have had the disease (and recovered), I can confirm this. A temporary 4,000-bed hospital has been made opposite London City Airport at the London ExCel Centre — NHS Nightingale. The airport’s proximity to the hospital and its centrality to London means it is used by the military to ferry supplies to the hospital and city.


Route: Anywhere to London City
ICAOs: Anywhere to EGLC
Flight Time: N/A
Equipment: RAF Lockheed Martin C130J

Check out this video on Twitter of a C130J landing at London City Airport here!

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Route: Anywhere to London City or London City to Anywhere
ICAOs: Anywhere to EGLC or EGLC to Anywhere
Flight Time: N/A
Equipment: Any generic-liveried aircraft, the Airbus Corporate Jet (A318-100), the Daher TBM-930, the Cessna Citation X, etcetera.

Opening Details
I’ll decide this much closer to the day. I have a very busy week ahead and, especially during the pandemic, my work often stretches into weekends — even though I work from home… It is entirely possible that, after saying now that I will open at 10:00 Zulu, I’ll still be fast asleep having been shattered.

On Sunday afternoon and evening (Zulu time), I will most definitely be controlling. Expect an update on Saturday afternoon (Zulu time) and, on Sunday, opening/closing messages.

Operating Procedures
These can be found at the thread reply below.

Information on other airports to be opened by IFATC this Sunday can be found at the Guide to IFATC at Home!

See you all this Sunday for IFATC at Home!


Photo credits: an image of the London City Airport logo — source; an image of the Palace of Westminster, London Eye, and River Thames — source; an image of London City Airport — source; an image of a digital “Thank you NHS” banner with ‘Wembley Stadium connected by EE’ in the background — source.



IFATC at Home — Operating Procedures


These procedures will be updated due to the introduction of SIDs and STARs.

This airport works differently to most others in the world and that is no different to its procedure in Infinite Flight!

STARs, SIDs, and other charts
Please see here for details.

Departure — Ground and Tower
When leaving the gate at London City Airport, there is no need to request pushback. All parking gates at the airport face the taxiway and so a pushback is not suitable for the airport. When you are ready to taxi, start your engines and request so.

If you are told to taxi to runway 27, taxi to the eastern-most hold short line and contact Tower. Once on this frequency, request takeoff at runway 27 — bear in mind, you should currently be facing almost opposite your departing runway. You will be instructed to back taxi when no conflict is expected. If the airport is busy, note that up to three aircraft may be instructed to back taxi at once. They will be expected to exit the runway to the right and hold short at the pad affixed to the base of runway 27. Even if told to “back taxi [… and] contact Ground,” stay on the Tower frequency and await further instructions — another takeoff request is not needed and will be treated as a duplicate message.

When taking off, maximum thrust is recommended.

Once you have taken off from runway 09, continue on your merry way. However, if you take off from runway 27 (which faces another airport) you should follow a different procedure. This is to ensure the prevention of conflict between approaching traffic to London Heathrow and (not as important in Infinite Flight) the obstacles of central London.

Not everyone enjoys reading charts so, to simplify things, use the following waypoints for your runway 27 departure: EGLC LCW01 LCN01 LCN04 LCN05 [resume own navigation] . This is demonstrated in the following image:

You should not climb past 3,000ft until you have passed waypoint LCN05.

Arrival — Approach, Landing, and Exit
London City Airport continues its nature as a special outlier to conventions with its approach. This 5.5° approach angle (2.2° steeper than the standard) can be challenging for many. Use your spoilers in the flight setting and full flaps to ensure the maintenance of a slow-and-steady speed.

As much as I hope for an Approach controller on the day, this may not be possible at all times. When the Approach frequency is active, you may request either a Visual or ILS approach.

If landing at runway 09, you may expect to receive a low and near approach into London City Airport. You will be led a mere 4 to 7 nautical miles away from the runway at 2,000ft. This will allow you to fly the steep glideslope to the runway while avoiding traffic departing London Heathrow.

If landing at runway 27, you can expect a long straight-in approach. You will intercept the glideslope at 4,000ft to 5,000ft.

If you have landed at runway 27, your runway exit instruction will be a simple “turn left when able.” However, if you land at runway 09 things may be different.

If you are told to back taxi, you should turn around and exit the runway as soon as possible. When turning around, you should use the circular-disc two-thirds along runway 09. However, all operating aircraft are capable of performing a 180° turn within the width of the runway. Contact Ground when off the runway. This will more than likely be the instruction if there is no approaching or departing conflict.

If you are told to exit the runway, you should continue to the end of the runway, exit, and hold short at the holding pad affixed to the base of runway 27. At an appropriate time — you will be instructed to back taxi up the runway, turn left, and contact Ground when off the runway.

Back Taxi Notice
This airport could not operate without the use of back taxis along the length of the runway. Though you are asked to expedite this operation, you will not be expected to go any faster than normal taxi speeds. This does not mean, however, that a 10kn back taxi will be appreciated.

Other Material
An old thread I have found on the airport may come in handy when executing the approach into London City Airport this Sunday!


Photo credits: an image of the London City Airport logo — source; an image of the ramp at London City Airport — source; an image of the runway 27 departure at London City Airport — screenshot of Infinite Flight in-game.


Great thread!

Stopping by definitely. Might fly in from Quimper or San Sebastian.

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Ooh backtaxi and a hard approach just my kind of airport 😉

Happy Flying and good luck with your session.
Cign :)

Very cool airport to control, I wish I could stop in but I might not have the time, we’ll have to see when the days arrives. ;)

Thanks! See you there…

It’s a great airport to fly into, for sure! Thanks for the well wishes.

We’ll see… Hope to see you there!

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This thread is the best I have seen! Great work!!! I’ll be sure to stop by one of favorite airports!

Thank you! I’ll see you this Sunday!

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The thread is looking really great! Many great details for the procedures as well. Thanks for sharing!

Ooh, London City. Very nice, it does look a bit horrible in Infinite Flight because of the water but still cool. If only i had pro. Great topic :)

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