Yesterday, President Bush said his administration is taking steps to prevent significant flight delays and reduce air traffic congestion during the busy holiday season. The plan includes temporarily opening up for commercial airliners the airspace typically dedicated to the military. In addition to the two Eastern corridors opened during Thanksgiving last year, extra flight lanes will be added in the Midwest, Southwest, and West this year.
The military uses the space for exercises, but often makes some available to commercial planes on an ad hoc basis. This move would allow airlines to count on the extra room in the skies, particularly helpful if bad weather materializes.