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27 CHAPTER EIGHT CONCLUSIONS This ACRP synthesis provides background on the regulatory, procedures were developed primarily to address noise policy, and legal development of DayNight Average Noise outside DNL 65, and an additional 38% reported that Level (DNL) 65 in the United States, as well as results of an the procedures were developed to address noise issues online survey of 35 airports that have demonstrated interest in both inside and outside DNL 65. The most common the issue of noise outside DNL 65. The responses to the survey types of ground noise control include physical con- on noise issues outside DNL 65 included the following: struction of blast fences (31%), ground runup enclo- sures (11%), and noise barriers/berms (20%); as well A majority of respondents (83%) indicated that noise as runup procedures (29%), pre-takeoff runup policies issues outside DNL 65 were "important," "very impor- (23%), reverse thrust policies (14%), and simply mov- tant," or "critical" to their airport. The remaining 17% ing the aircraft away from noise-sensitive communi- reported that noise issues outside DNL 65 were "some- ties (23%). what important" or "not at all important." More than half of the surveyed airports (57%) reported The most frequently cited method of minimizing noise having land use compatibility measures that apply out- outside DNL 65 was operator education and outreach side DNL 65. The tools used by airports for land use (74% of respondents), followed by noise abatement flight compatibility planning include zoning, building permits tracks (69%), preferential runway use programs (66%), that require sound insulation of residential and noise- noise abatement departure or arrival procedures (60%), sensitive nonresidential land uses, and disclosure to and ground noise control (51%). residents. Respondents reported a wide range of effec- "Community concerns" were indicated by 80% of tiveness: 21% said their efforts were "very effective" respondents as the motivation for addressing noise out- in preventing incompatible land uses outside DNL 65, side DNL 65; 57% also indicated that "preventive plan- 64% said their efforts were "somewhat or moderately effective," and 16% said their efforts were "not effec- ning" was a motivation. tive at all." Seventy-four percent of respondents indicated that more The majority of respondents (58%) do not provide sound than three-quarters of their airport's noise complaints insulation to homeowners living outside DNL 65. How- came from people who live outside DNL 65. ever, 20% provide sound insulation for homes in contigu- ous neighborhoods ("block rounding"), and an additional Survey responses also revealed the following: 15% provide sound insulation for homes within the DNL 60 dB contour. A majority of airports use noise abatement departure Nearly three-quarters of respondents (74%) reported (63%) and arrival (51%) flight tracks and departure that they use both websites and face-to-face meetings to (54%) and arrival (40%) cockpit procedures to minimize communicate with people exposed to noise outside noise over residential and other noise-sensitive neigh- DNL 65. Airports also use online flight tracking (40%), borhoods outside DNL 65. However, among surveyed newsletters (40%), and a variety of other tools such as airports there is no consistency in methodology for eval- quarterly and annual noise reports, and noise staff driven uating the effectiveness of noise abatement outside DNL outreach tools. 65, and there is little guidance from the FAA on appro- The responding airports communicate with pilots about priate metrics or criteria for evaluating noise abatement noise outside DNL 65 in a number of ways: the most procedures. Responses to the survey indicated that in cer- common are pilot briefings (40%) and Jeppesen inserts tain areas airport staff is not privy to the cost incurred by (40%), posters and handouts (37%), and FAA standards airlines and the FAA of implementing various actions, as (17%); other methods include airfield signage, Airport the responses noted that information is not available. Facility Directory Special Notices, videos distributed Finally, respondents report that noise abatement flight through flight schools, and phone calls. tracks are somewhat more effective than noise abatement procedures at reducing noise complaints. Two case studies demonstrate that there is a strong need for Most airports reported some procedures to minimize airports to have continued flexibility in addressing noise out- noise from ground operations such as taxi and pre-takeoff side DNL 65--whether because communities have demanded runups (69%); 25% of those airports reported that the it (Naples Municipal Airport) or because the airport has

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28 conducted proactive planning (Dallas/Ft. Worth International Land use measures--This study identified a need Airport). to identify the barriers to implementing land use measures; some of this work is ongoing through This synthesis identified the need for additional research ACRP Project 03-03, Enhancing Airport Land Use in the following areas: Compatibility. Complaints--The relationship between noise com- "Toolkit" of strategies to address noise outside DNL 65-- plaints and noise level is still not well understood. Areas This synthesis identified a range of strategies employed for research in this area include: (1) an evaluation of how by airports to address noise outside DNL 65. A compre- complaints are made, recorded, and dealt with; (2) how hensive toolkit with recommended best practices could airport operators use and evaluate complaint levels to help airports identify those strategies best suited for a drive noise programs; and (3) how airport operators variety of noise issues outside DNL 65. evaluate the effectiveness of noise programs through Communication--Better methods are needed for work- changes in complaints. ing with local communities; some of this work is already Case studies--The case studies described in this synthe- underway through ACRP Project 02-05, Guidebook on sis are instructive; however, the scope of this project did Community Responses to Aircraft Noise. not allow for an in-depth analysis or discussion of some Evaluation of noise abatement strategies outside DNL 65 of the best practice strategies that could be derived from including noise metrics, criteria, and benefit-cost analyses. these airports.