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Click on a numbered portion of the image to find key airport
and plane spotting / photographing areas (underlined text).
Some numbers in image are street references only and do not link.
Due to ongoing airport construction, some of these areas
may become limited in access or eliminated completely.
(photo taken from an America West Express CRJ-200-November 2005)
*Due to heightened security at Sky Harbor, many areas listed below may now be off limits.*
the areas marked with an asterisk* are now considered off limits-use your own judgment with these areas
Airlane Road closed between 41st Street and 44th Street / no access to the area northeast of the airport
Parking along Old Tower Road is now prohibited. / The Left Seat Balcony is fenced off. / Spotting on the Cutter Balcony is now unwelcome
the end of 40th Street now has the Rio Salado Pathway open to the public
1. Runway 7L/25R:
2. Runway 8/26:
3. Runway 7R/25L:
This runway was opened on October 5, 2000. The smallest of Sky Harbor's runways, it is intended to be used primarily for landings and lighter aircraft. Aircraft can be observed and photographed on this runway from Old Tower Road. (No stopping allowed!*) The sidewalk along 24th Street offers views as well, but you must walk to this location. Aircraft landing on runway 25L may be seen and photographed off the airport at a location at the end of 40th Street (Rio Salado Pathway now open). You can reach this location by heading east out of the airport and turning south on AZ 44th Street (formerly AZ 153). Turn right and head west on University Drive, then right and head north on 40th Street (no official parking). The road ends at the Salt River (normally dry).
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4. Terminal 2:
Terminal 2's parking structure (fee) is located across the street and
north of the terminal. It offers good views of the north runway and the
north gates (West side) of terminal 3. It offers very limited views
of the South runway and the east side of terminal 2.
5. Terminal 3:
Terminal 3's parking structure (fee) is located above the terminal
itself. It offers excellent views of all the runways. Taxiways
Tango and Sierra can be seen quite well from here. All of Terminal 3's
gates as well as the gates on the east side of Terminal 2 can be easily
seen. A limited number of Terminal 4's gates can be seen from here as
well. With its central location, this is probably the best overall
on-airport spotting point at PHX. The ATC tower can be seen on the
east end of Terminal 3.
6. Terminal 4:
Terminal 4's parking structure (fee) is located above the terminal
itself. Views of all the runways can be had from here. Most of
Terminal 4's gates and a limited number of Terminal 3's east side gates
can be seen here as well.
Aircraft at this ramp can best be seen off the airport
from the Northeast end of the field. There is a no-outlet road* to the east of
the hangar which allows you to get close to aircraft landing on runway 26.
Aircraft on Taxiway Romeo and at Terminal 4's easternmost gates can be seen from the roadway
which runs between the American and Southwest hangars. Use caution here now too!
8. Southwest Hangar:
Aircraft at this ramp are difficult to see. The only
decent locations might be inside the East Economy Parking Lot (fee) or across the river at the end of
40th Street*, off the
Tango / Sierra:
Taxiway Tango and Sierra provide aircraft a means
to crossover from
the North or South side of the airport. Aircraft
on these taxiways can be seen / photographed from
the parking structures (fee) at Terminal 3 or 4.
10. East Cargo Ramp:
(this ramp has seen limited use recently)
11. West Cargo
This ramp is used mainly by the smaller cargo airlines,
although you may find other aircraft here as well. There is a service road directly north of the
ramp which allows limited views of the west end of the ramp
(watch for vehicles), but the best area to see this ramp is off the airport along Old Tower
Road* (at a distance) or along the old 24th Street (renamed
12. Cutter Ramp:
The Cutter Aviation Ramp can be seen from Old Tower Road, just south of the airport. This road
has no outlet or airport access. Various aircraft can
be seen here, business aircraft, air ambulance and general aviation along with an occasional larger
charter aircraft. Aircraft can be seen on this ramp
from the adjacent Swift parking lot (limited view/private
14. USANG/South Cargo:
U.S. Air National Guard Ramp is home to the 161st Air Refueling Wing. The KC-135's
and occasionally other military aircraft can best be
seen from Terminal 3. The ANG ramp is east of the South Cargo ramp.
South Cargo complex is in this area as well. FedEx and UPS are located here.
The cargo ramp can be seen from Old Tower Road.
15. General Aviation:
General aviation tie-downs and some private hangars can be found in this area. SRP and the State
of Arizona aircraft can be found here. View aircraft in this area
from Airlane Road, just north of the airport.
Honeywell is home to the Garrett Turbine Division. The ramp for this
company can best be seen from Terminal's 3 or 4. Look for the Honeywell
Boeing 757 (N757HW), Convair 580 (N580HW) and occasionally other small
aircraft here. APU's and aircraft engines are produced at this
17. Private Hangars:
There are several private hangars in this area, maintained by several different companies.
Mesa Airlines now occupies the old U.S. Customs
hangar. Usually what little activity is here can best be seen from Terminal's 3 or 4 or along Airlane
18. Executive Terminal:
The airports Executive Terminal Ramp is located just
south of and near the middle of Runway 8/26. It has seen limited use
(if any!) as of late, mainly Fiesta Bowl charters and VIP aircraft. The Executive
Terminal Building is now used by the Phoenix Police.
Click on above image for our drawn PHX map page
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