Changes could be coming to the flight paths planes take to get to Winnipeg's Richardson International Airport.

The intent is to shorten flight times and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but it could also mean planes flying over some neighbourhoods where they haven't before.

NAV Canada, a not-for-profit corporation that owns and operates Canada's civil air navigation system, said it wants to design new flight paths while being sensitive to community impacts, so it is holding public consultations via an online survey and public open houses.

The project is part of a national modernization program targeting the country's busiest airports, combined with the implementation of a new technology called Required Navigation Performance.

Required Navigation Performance combines satellite-based positioning with modern flight management systems, allowing aircraft to fly more precise routes.

That creates flight paths that are shorter and provide for a continuous descent, which is easier on fuel consumption.

New flight paths in Winnipeg could save up to three minutes of flying time for arrivals, NAV Canada officials said.

Feedback on the proposed routes can also be provided through NAV Canada's online comment tool.

Open house dates

People are invited to participate in the following public drop-in consultation events:

March 8 – 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
Headingley Community Centre
5353 Portage Ave.

March 9 – 7 to 9 p.m.
Valley Gardens Community Centre
218 Antrim Rd.

March 18 – 1 to 3 p.m.
Four Points by Sheraton Winnipeg South
2935 Pembina Highway

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