Could be we have a new SpaceX spaceport - the FAA is doing an assessment.
5 miles South of Port Isabel, Texas, and the FAA has started the permitting process.
Link to FAA PDF....
DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION
Federal Aviation Administration
Office of Commercial Space Transportation; Notice of Intent to Prepare an
Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), Open a Public Scoping Period, and Conduct a
Public Scoping Meeting
AGENCY: The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is the lead Federal agency.
ACTION: Notice of Intent to Prepare an EIS, Open a Public Scoping Period, and
Conduct a Public Scoping Meeting
SUMMARY: This Notice provides information to Federal, State, and local agencies,
Native American tribes, and other interested persons regarding the FAA’s intent to
prepare an EIS for Space Exploration Technologies’ (SpaceX’s) proposal to launch the
Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy orbital vertical launch vehicles from a private site located in
Cameron County, Texas. Under the Proposed Action, SpaceX proposes to construct a
vertical launch area and a control center area to support up to 12 commercial launches per year.
The vehicles to be launched include the Falcon 9, Falcon Heavy (up to two per
year), and a variety of smaller reusable suborbital launch vehicles. SpaceX would be
required to apply for the appropriate launch licenses and/or experimental permits to be
issued by the FAA. The FAA will prepare the EIS in accordance with the National
Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA; 42 United States Code [U.S.C.] 4321 et seq.),
the Council on Environmental Quality Regulations for Implementing the Procedural
Provisions of NEPA (40 Code of Federal Regulations [CFR] parts 1500-1508), and FAA
Order 1050.1E, Change 1, Environmental Impacts: Policies and Procedures, as part of its
licensing and permitting process.
The Proposed Action is for the FAA to issue launch licenses and/or experimental permits
to SpaceX that would allow SpaceX to launch the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy orbital
vertical launch vehicles and a variety of reusable suborbital launch vehicles from a
launch site on privately-owned property in Cameron County, Texas. The Falcon 9 orbital
vertical launch vehicle is a medium-lift class launch vehicle with a gross lift-off weight of
approximately 1,000,000 pounds (lbs) with a maximum length of 230 feet (ft). The
Falcon 9 uses liquid oxygen (LOX) and highly refined kerosene, also known as rocket
propellant-1 or refined petroleum-1 (RP-1), as propellants to carry payloads into orbit.
The Falcon Heavy is similar to the Falcon 9, except it has an additional two boosters
“strapped on,” each booster being almost identical to the Falcon 9 first stage core. The
Falcon Heavy is a heavy lift class launch vehicle with a gross lift-off weight of
approximately 3,400,000 lbs. It has an overall maximum length of approximately 230 ft.
A reusable suborbital launch vehicle could consist of a Falcon 9 Stage 1 tank with a
maximum propellant (RP-1 and LOX) load of approximately 6,900 gallons.
As part of the Proposed Action, SpaceX proposes to construct a vertical launch area and a
control center area. The proposed vertical launch area site is currently undeveloped and
is located directly adjacent to the eastern terminus of Texas State Highway 4 (Boca Chica
Boulevard) and approximately 3 miles north of the Mexican border on the Gulf Coast. It
is located approximately 5 miles south of Port Isabel and South Padre Island. At the
vertical launch area, the new facilities required would include: an integration- and
processing-hangar, a launch pad and stand with its associated flame duct, propellant
storage and handling areas, a workshop and office area, and a warehouse for parts
The control center area would be located inland to the west of the vertical launch area and
would include: a control center building and a payload processing facility; it might also
include a launch vehicle preparation hangar and satellite fuels storage. All facilities
would be constructed on private land owned or leased by SpaceX. The development of
access and supporting utility infrastructure for the vertical launch area and the control
center area may occur on lands outside that which is owned or leased by SpaceX.
Operations would consist of up to 12 launches per year with a maximum of two Falcon
Heavy launches. All Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy launches would be expected to have
commercial payloads, including satellites or experimental payloads. In addition to
standard payloads, the Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy may also carry a capsule, such as the
SpaceX Dragon capsule. All launch trajectories would be to the east over the Gulf of