Essex County Airport

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Essex County Airport
Airport typePublic
OwnerEssex County Improvement Authority
ServesCaldwell, New Jersey
Elevation AMSL172 ft / 52 m
Coordinates40°52′31″N 074°16′53″W / 40.87528°N 74.28139°W / 40.87528; -74.28139Coordinates: 40°52′31″N 074°16′53″W / 40.87528°N 74.28139°W / 40.87528; -74.28139
CDW is located in Essex County, New Jersey
Location in Essex County / New Jersey / US
CDW is located in New Jersey
CDW (New Jersey)
CDW is located in the United States
CDW (the United States)
Direction Length Surface
ft m
4/22 4,552 1,387 Asphalt
10/28 3,719 1,134 Asphalt
Statistics (2012)
Aircraft operations74,459
Based aircraft197

Essex County Airport (IATA: CDW[2], ICAO: KCDW, FAA LID: CDW), informally known as Caldwell Airport,[3] is a public use airport located in Fairfield Township, Essex County, New Jersey, two nautical miles (4 km) north of the central business district of Caldwell, a borough of northwestern Essex County in the U.S. state of New Jersey. It is owned by the Essex County Improvement Authority.[1] This facility is included in the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems for 2011–2015, which categorized it as a general aviation reliever airport.[4]


In April 1929 Essex Airport Corporation was formed by Walter Marvin and six other individuals. The intention of the company was to open an airport to serve Montclair, New Jersey, a town seven miles (11 km) away. The tract of land that Essex Airport Corporation intended for the airport was the Fairfield Dairy Company land that had also been used during World War I as a temporary airfield for the Naval Rifle Range which had been located along the Passaic River in Pine Brook. Some of the early references to the airport have the designation "Marvin Airport", named after Walter Marvin.[5]

In 1999, the airport gained national attention when John F. Kennedy Jr., who based his private aircraft there, crashed hours after departing the airport en route for Martha's Vineyard.[5]

Facilities and aircraft[edit]

Essex County Airport main building and tower

Essex County Airport covers an area of 275 acres (111 ha) at an elevation of 172 feet (52 m) above mean sea level. It has two runways with asphalt surfaces: 4/22 is 4,552 by 80 feet (1,387 x 24 m) and 10/28 is 3,719 by 75 feet (1,134 x 23 m).[1]

For the 12-month period ending November 30, 2012, the airport had 74,459 aircraft operations, an average of about 200 per day: 97% general aviation, 1% air taxi and 1% military. Around that time there were 197 aircraft based at this airport: 81% single-engine, 16% multi-engine and 1.5% each jets and helicopters.[1]

The weather station reports are commonly identified as "Caldwell".[6][7]


  • On August 29, 1982, a Cessna 172 carrying a flight instructor and student pilot collided with a Cessna 150 flown by a student pilot. The control tower did not have a radar system installed at the time and had instructed the Cessna 172 to fly an overhead entry to the traffic pattern while the Cessna 150 was on its downwind leg. The resulting collision sheared a wing off of the Cessna 172 and the ensuing crash resulted in the death of both occupants. The pilot of the other aircraft made a forced landing at the airport and skidded off the runway with the plane coming to rest on its nose.[8][9]
  • On November 15, 2002, a Mooney M10 and a Piper PA-32R-300 collided in the traffic pattern while maneuvering at night for an approach to runway 22. The pilots of both planes were killed in the crash that followed.[10]
  • On January 15, 2007, a Beechcraft A36 Bonanza in night IMC conditions impacted trees on a ridgeline while on approach to the airport. During at the start of its approach, the aircraft was 200 feet below the published minimum descent altitude for the instrument approach procedure and over the next 1.5 miles descended at a 7 degree angle and a 945 feet-per-minutes rate of descent resulting in controlled flight into terrain. Upon hitting trees, the plane flipped over, landed in a street and burst into flames killing the pilot.[11]
  • On July 5, 2010, a Cirrus SR-22 crashed on its approach for landing about 100 yards North of the airport. All three passengers on board were killed in the crash and ensuing fire.[12]
  • On August 15, 2015, shortly after takeoff from runway 22, the pilot of a Cessna 205 reported that he was unable to maintain power and attempted a turn back towards the airport. The airplane descended, impacted wooded terrain and was partially consumed by the post-impact fire killing the pilot.[13][14]

Airlines and destinations[edit]

Tropic Ocean Airways Seasonal: New York Seaplane Base

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d FAA Airport Form 5010 for CDW PDF. Federal Aviation Administration. Effective January 10, 2013.
  2. ^ "IATA Airport Code Search (CDW: Caldwell)". International Air Transport Association. Retrieved October 25, 2013.
  3. ^ "Essex County Airport (Welcome Page)". Essex County Improvement Authority. Retrieved March 10, 2014.
  4. ^ "2011–2015 NPIAS Report, Appendix A" (PDF). Federal Aviation Administration. October 4, 2010. Archived from the original (PDF, 2.03 MB) on September 27, 2012.
  5. ^ a b Santiago, Katherine (June 21, 2009). "Historic Essex County Airport has a lofty past". The Star-Ledger. Newark. Retrieved January 15, 2010.
  6. ^ "Weather observations for the past three days, Caldwell, Essex County Airport". National Weather Service. Retrieved March 10, 2014.
  7. ^ "Average Weather For Caldwell, New Jersey, USA". Retrieved March 12, 2014.
  8. ^ "Judge Blames Air Controller In Fatal Jersey Crash". The New York Times. December 15, 1985. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 1, 2017.
  9. ^ Times, Lindsey Gruson, Special To The New York (August 30, 1982). "Midair Collision Near An Airport In Jersey Kills 2". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved February 1, 2017.
  10. ^ Ranter, Harro. "ASN Aircraft accident 15-NOV-2002 Mooney M10 N9502V". Retrieved February 1, 2017.
  11. ^ "NTSB Aviation Accident Data Summary for Accident Number NYC07FA056".
  12. ^ "Three killed in small plane crash near Essex County Airport in Fairfield". Retrieved February 1, 2017.
  13. ^ "Pilot dies in plane crash, fire near Essex County Airport". New York's PIX11 / WPIX-TV. August 15, 2015. Retrieved February 1, 2017.
  14. ^ Ranter, Harro. "ASN Aircraft accident 15-AUG-2015 Cessna T206H Turbo Stationair N63TV". Retrieved February 1, 2017.

External links[edit]