Sounding off on airplane noise
(Page 2 of 3)
Brian Simon, the Port Authority’s director of governmental and community relations, said that the expansion of the 4L/R22 would meet federal requirements for runway safety and serve as a better alternative than the original plan in helping to minimize airplane noise in surrounding towns. “We didn’t want a community up in arms and we had to make sure we comply with the Runway Safety Area standards in keeping that area safe,” Simon said, “because we bear a responsibility not only to make sure those flying to and from Kennedy Airport are safe, but those who live around the airport are equally safe.”
Seide said planes leaving JFK predominantly affect Inwood, while arriving planes impacts other portions of the Five Towns. “Planes fly much lower around here than in places like Floral Park or Garden City,” he said. “Whatever increases aircraft safety is the most important thing.”
Having lived in the Five Towns for more than 20 years, Seide said he’s used to the noise. “I tolerate it,” he said. “I like it here and I’m not bothered by the noise. When I sit outside with my neighbors and planes fly over we can’t talk for about 25 seconds but that’s about it.”
Baessler, who has been serving on the TVASNAC board for 22 years, said a lot has been done to alleviate airplane noise, but little of it has to do with the organization. “The biggest contributor to noise abatement has been the innovation in the design of the airplane,” he said. “They climb higher, have quieter engines and create less noise than they did 20 or 30 years ago.”
Simon said that, while the Port Authority would do its best to address quality of life issues such as aircraft noise, the Federal Aviation Administration, an agency of the Department of Transportation, would also need to be consulted. He said that the Port Authority is an airport operator and that the runways used are determined by the FAA but that the Authority is sensitive to noise issues. He encouraged residents to voice their concerns during the environmental assessment comment period ending Nov. 18.