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DeKalb–Peachtree Airport

Coordinates: 33°52′32″N 084°18′07″W / 33.87556°N 84.30194°W / 33.87556; -84.30194
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DeKalb–Peachtree Airport
Aerial view, circa 2004
Airport typePublic
OwnerDeKalb County
ServesAtlanta, Georgia
LocationChamblee, Georgia
Elevation AMSL1,003 ft / 306 m
Coordinates33°52′32″N 084°18′07″W / 33.87556°N 84.30194°W / 33.87556; -84.30194
PDK is located in Georgia
Location of airport in Georgia
PDK is located in the United States
PDK (the United States)
Direction Length Surface
ft m
3R/21L 6,001 1,829 Concrete
3L/21R 3,746 1,142 Asphalt
16/34 3,968 1,209 Asphalt
9/27 (closed) 3,383 1,031 Asphalt
Number Length Surface
ft m
H1 56 17 Concrete
Statistics (2021)
Aircraft operations158,104
Based aircraft306

DeKalb–Peachtree Airport (IATA: PDK, ICAO: KPDK, FAA LID: PDK) is a county-owned, public-use airport in DeKalb County, Georgia, United States.[1] The airport is located in the city of Chamblee, just northeast of Atlanta. It is also known commonly as Peachtree–DeKalb Airport, or simply PDK. Other names (rarely used) include Peachtree Airport, DeKalb Airport, or DeKalb County Airport. ASOS weather reports are produced 24 hours per day as "Chamblee". It has airline service with Ultimate Air Shuttle to Cincinnati and Southern Airways Express to Memphis and Destin.

As per Federal Aviation Administration records, the airport had 1,784 passenger boardings (enplanements) in calendar year 2008,[2] 393 enplanements in 2009, and 463 in 2010.[3] It is included in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015, which categorized it as a reliever airport.[4]


Camp Gordon[edit]

Camp Gordon, Atlanta circa 1917
The Human American Eagle, taken at Camp Gordon, 1918, 12,500 people

The United States Army established many war-training camps during World War I. Chamblee, northeast of Atlanta, was selected for one of the state's largest army cantonments. It was named Camp Gordon in honor of John Brown Gordon, who was a major general in the Confederate army, a Georgia governor, a U.S. senator, and a businessman. The camp opened in July 1917, becoming a training site and home of the famous 82nd Division.[5] The division was composed of men from several different states, but men from Georgia made up almost half its number. Among the men trained at Camp Gordon, during that period, was the future Medal of Honor recipient Alvin York.[6]

The 157th Depot Brigade was located at Camp Gordon, which received, organized and equipped troops in preparation for further assignments. The unit also received returning troops from war time service and completed their out processing and discharges.

Camp Gordon fielded football teams in 1917 and 1918 that competed in those NCAA college football seasons.

This camp was in operation until the sale of real estate and buildings was ordered in 1920. It was abandoned in September 1921.

(The Army re-created a different Camp Gordon in Augusta, 150 miles [240 km] away, during World War II. It was renamed Fort Gordon in 1956, and has since been renamed Fort Eisenhower.)

Naval Air Station Atlanta[edit]

In 1940, the United States government authorized construction of a military airport on the former site of the Chamblee camp. The airport began operations on March 22, 1941, a few months before the U.S. entry into World War II, as Naval Air Station Atlanta. The airport was from the county by the United States Navy.

Barracks constructed at the facility during the war became classrooms in late 1948 for Southern Technical Institute, a new engineering technology school created by Georgia Tech for former soldiers.

Naval Air Station Atlanta subsequently moved to Marietta on the south side of what is now called Dobbins Air Reserve Base. NAS Atlanta was ultimately closed by BRAC action in 2009, and became General Lucius D. Clay National Guard Center.

Like NAS Atlanta, the Southern Technical Institute moved from PDK in 1958, to land donated by Dobbins, and it now operates as Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology,[7] a part of Kennesaw State University.[8]

Commercial airport[edit]

The airport was converted from military to civilian use from 1957 to 1959.

In 1973, PDK was the site of a Learjet crash, resulting in seven fatalities. It was determined that the crash resulted from "[t]he loss of engine thrust during takeoff due to ingestion of birds by the engines, resulting in loss of control of the airplane."[9] The aircraft struck an apartment building and burned in a complex just south of the airport. Large flocks of birds were attracted to an adjacent DeKalb County landfill (operational in summer 1962 and finally closed in early 1975), which had become a flight safety issue long before the crash, after several minor bird strikes in the late 1960s and early 1970s.

Facilities and aircraft[edit]

Dekalb–Peachtree Airport covers an area of 745 acres (301 ha) at an elevation of 1,003 feet (306 m) above mean sea level. It has three runways: 3R/21L (formerly 2R/20L)[10] is 6,001 by 100 feet (1,829 x 30 m) with a concrete surface; 3L/21R (formerly 2L/20R)[10] is 3,746 by 150 feet (1,142 x 46 m) with an asphalt surface; and 16/34, which is 3,968 by 150 feet (1,209 x 46 m) with an asphalt surface. It also has one helipad designated H1 with a concrete surface measuring 56 by 56 feet (17 x 17 m).[1]

For the 12-month period ending December 31, 2021, the airport had 158,104 aircraft operations, an average of 433 per day: 75% transient general aviation and 25% local general aviation.. At that time there were 306 aircraft based at this airport: 213 single-engine, 21 multi-engine, 58 jet, 12 helicopter, and 2 gliders.[1]

The airport has over 100 hangars. It is the second-busiest airport in Georgia, behind Hartsfield–Jackson Atlanta International Airport (ATL), in the number of flight operations per year and is the seventh-busiest general aviation (non-airline) airport in the US.[11] PDK helps to relieve ATL of smaller-aircraft traffic. It is used by helicopters for metro Atlanta's four major network-affiliated television stations (WAGA-TV, WANF, WSB-TV, and WXIA-TV) as the base for electronic news gathering from the air. PDK is also home to The AutoPILOT Magazine, an advertorial publication covering all things aviation-related. A new control tower was built in 1988, and stands at 130 feet (40 m) tall. Many of the old NAS Atlanta buildings still remain. The largest houses offices for PDK administration, flight schools, and the Civil Air Patrol, as well as the Downwind restaurant, with an aviation-themed decor and an open deck overlooking the active runways.[12] Adjacent to that building is a children's playground, Georgia's first aviation park.

In late 2018, the first EMAS installed in Georgia was added to runway 3R/21L.[13]

Epps Aviation, the airport's full service fixed-base operator, is located on 21 acres (8.5 ha) in a modern facility, elsewhere on the airport grounds.

Airlines and destinations[edit]

JetSmarter Charter: Boca Raton
Ultimate Air Shuttle Charlotte (temporarily suspended), Cincinnati–Lunken

Economic impact[edit]

In 1997, DeKalb Peachtree Airport was one of the largest tax contributors of DeKalb County, behind The Southern Company and Bellsouth, but receives no taxpayer dollars for operations. The 1997 study funded by the airport found that in addition to 762 aviation-related jobs at the airport, there may be 3,600 non-airport jobs driven by airport activities like taxi drivers and cleaning personnel.[14]


  • On February 26, 1973, a Learjet crashed trying to return to the airport after suffering a bird strike after takeoff. See 1973 DeKalb–Peachtree Airport Learjet crash.
  • On May 14, 2016, a biplane crashed into the ground at the “Good Neighbor Day” air show whilst trying to pull up from a loop de loop. The one pilot was killed in the accident.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d FAA Airport Form 5010 for PDK PDF. Federal Aviation Administration. Effective July 13, 2023.
  2. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2008" (PDF, 1.0 MB). Passenger Boarding (Enplanement) and All-Cargo Data for U.S. Airports. Federal Aviation Administration. December 18, 2009.
  3. ^ "Enplanements for CY 2010" (PDF, 189 KB). Passenger Boarding (Enplanement) and All-Cargo Data for U.S. Airports. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2011.
  4. ^ "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF). National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems. Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2010. Archived from the original (PDF, 2.03 MB) on 2012-09-27.
  5. ^ Hudson, Paul Stephen; Mirza, Lora Pond (2017). "Transforming the Atlanta Home Front: Camp Gordon during World War I". Georgia Historical Quarterly. 101 (2): 147–165. Retrieved 20 February 2018.
  6. ^ Capozzola, Christopher (2008). Uncle Sam Wants You: World War I and the Making of the Modern American Citizen. New York, New York: Oxford University Press. p. 267. ISBN 978-0-19-533549-1.
  7. ^ Duguay, J. C. (June 2000). "DeKalb Peachtree Airport – Our History". DeKalb Peachtree Airport. Archived from the original on December 28, 2007. Retrieved October 24, 2007.
  8. ^ Kennesaw State University (January 2016). "It's official: Board of Regents approves consolidation of Kennesaw State and Southern Polytechnic". Kennesaw State University. Retrieved January 6, 2018.
  9. ^ Ranter, Harro. "ASN Aircraft accident Learjet 24 N454RN Atlanta-DeKalb Peachtree Airport, GA (PDK)". Aviation-safety.net. Retrieved 28 June 2019.
  10. ^ a b Bonita A. Martin, Air Traffic Manager, DeKalb–Peachtree Airport Traffic Control Tower (March 7, 2013). "DEKALB-PEACHTREE ATCT LETTER TO AIRMEN NO. 13-01, RUNWAY IDENTIFICATION CHANGE". FAA. Retrieved 22 March 2013.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: multiple names: authors list (link)
  11. ^ "AIN Interactive: Traffic at the busiest airports in the U.S. | Aviation International News". Archived from the original on 2014-03-13. Retrieved 2014-03-13.
  12. ^ "PDK - DeKalb Peachtree Airport". Archived from the original on 2013-01-15. Retrieved 2013-01-06.
  13. ^ Epstein, Curt. "PDK Is First Georgia Airport To Install EMAS". Aviation International News. Retrieved 28 June 2019.
  14. ^ Glier, Ray (October 19, 2007). "DeKalb Peachtree proves to be economic driver". Atlanta Business Chronicle. Retrieved October 24, 2007.

External links[edit]