Port Authority Will Double Noise Monitors Around Local Airports

By Katie Honan on March 25, 2014 5:14pm 

 An American Airlines plane at LaGuardia Airport.
An American Airlines plane at LaGuardia Airport.
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Getty Images/Bruce Bennett

EAST ELMHURST — The Port Authority will double the number of noise monitors in neighborhoods surrounding the city's airports, one of many programs the agency is implementing in an effort to be a "better neighbor" to those living under noisy skies.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the plan Monday for the agency to step up its efforts in addressing noise issues in communities near LaGuardia and John F. Kennedy airports.

"The Port Authority understands it must strive to be a good neighbor in the communities where its airports are located and we will seek noise mitigation with the FAA where feasible,” said Port Authority Aviation Director Thomas Bosco.

An online tracker of flight patterns was also unveiled Monday, allowing residents to visualize the number of planes flying over them.

The plan, according to Cuomo, is for the Port Authority to first engage the community in regular meetings focused on noise and double the number of noise monitors, which are scarcer in the New York area compared to other cities.

There are two permanent and two temporary noise monitors in place near La Guardia — compared with 10 at John F. Kennedy Airport and 40 at Los Angeles International Airport, according to the Port Authority.

Airport noise has plagued Queens residents, especially in neighborhoods like Jackson Heights and East Elmhurst, who complained last fall that the noise had gotten worse.

The Port Authority admitted that a new flight pattern and construction on one of the airport's runways had contributed to more planes overhead, and vowed at a November meeting to work harder to monitor noise.

Janey McEneaney, the founder of Queens Quiet Skies — a group made up of residents who live around airports  thanked the governor and other elected officials for helping the group reach its goal.

"We're very happy and looking towards to the future," she said. "We hope to participate in the roundtable and start addressing our common issues with the FAA and Port Authority." 

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