Nothing Brings Communities Together Like Litigation
Fairfield County, CT officials from Greenwich and New Canaan
are working together to refute the FAA's new flight plans set to
increase air traffic, and potentially airplane noise in their
They are working together to commission their own study to
analyze the FAA's proposal. Williams Aviation Consultants, Inc. of
Queen Creek, AZ has been selected to provide the officials with the
analysis. The study will examine, not just the proposal, but the
methodology used and the agency's projected air traffic volume.
"I think this is a regional problem," Greenwich First Selectman
Jim Lash said. "We all have the same concern with this, and that is
the report that has been presented makes no attempt to mitigate the
noise impact. That's unacceptable to all of us."
"If there's no attention paid to the noise issue, I think it's
possible there will be litigation coming out of many of these
communities," Lash said.
After several years studying air traffic congestion in the area
between Philadelphia, Newark Liberty, La Guardia and Kennedy, the
FAA has released their new aircraft routing system -- saying that
the changes would save 12 million minutes of delays per year at
area airports. The new patterns would take planes over parts of
Fairfield County. Current routes fly over Putnam and Westchester
Counties in New York.
While the FAA denies the new flight patterns will have a
dramatic effect on Fairfield County, they do say there will be some
increased noise, "but not significant by FAA standards", states Jim
Peters, a spokesman for the FAA's Eastern Regional Office in
As reported by the Stamford Advocate and other Southern
Connecticut Newspapers, another controversial proposal would allow
planes departing from Westchester County Airport to turn back over
Connecticut as they ascend. Peters said the route would take
outbound planes back over the airport.
Now, most departing flights head west or south, climbing over
the Hudson River, lower Westchester County or the Bronx, NY. An FAA
rendering of the proposed departure route showing a loop over
northwestern Greenwich, which borders the Rye Brook airport,
alarming Fairfield County officials.
The FAA will issue a report before the hearing on April 24 with
recommendations for mitigating noise. The public will have until
May 11 to comment on the rerouting proposal, which the FAA has said
could take effect in August.