updated 10/29/2008 5:24:58 PM ET 2008-10-29T21:24:58

Chicago can blame New York, at least in part.

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Federal officials say many of the delays plaguing O'Hare International Airport are due to congestion at New York airports.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters told reporters at O'Hare on Wednesday that "Chicago shouldn't have to play second city to New York's aviation shortcomings."

Peters says new data shows fewer than half the flights between O'Hare and New York's three airports are on time. That compares to an almost 80 percent on-time performance for all other flights.

A $15 billion upgrade of O'Hare is supposed to reduce delays. But Peters says New York congestion undermines that. She says her department is trying to address the problem, including by redesigning airspace patterns around New York.

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