Lawmakers Decry Federal Airspace Plan, Citing Quality Of Life And Noise Pollution Concerns

Lawmakers Decry Federal Airspace Plan, Citing Quality Of Life And Noise Pollution Concerns

Efficient air travel should not come at the expense of New Jersey families

Washington - A bipartisan, bicameral group of New Jersey lawmakers today expressed serious concerns to the Federal Aviation Administration about plans to redesign airspace above the Garden State plans that would adversely impact the quality of life for thousands of New Jerseyans. In a letter to the FAA, U.S. Senators Robert Menendez and Frank R. Lautenberg, as well as U.S. Representatives Steven R. Rothman, Scott Garrett, Donald M. Payne and Robert E. Andrews expressed apprehension about proposed changes to flight paths that would result in increased noise in the region.

These plans were outlined in the Draft Environmental Impact Statement for the New York/New Jersey/Philadelphia Metropolitan Area Airspace Redesign.

Reduced delays and additional flights for air travelers should not come at the expense of New Jerseys families, the lawmakers wrote.

Despite early FAA indications that a major airspace redesign effort would reduce harmful environmental impacts, such as air and noise pollution, the DEIS exclusively addresses airspace efficiency and capacity improvements. The result is enhanced operational capacity for the aviation community, but a total disregard for the noise concerns of New Jerseyans.

While the lawmakers laud the effort to improve air traffic management, they object to the measures in the Airspace Redesign that subject hundreds of thousands of New Jersey families to an immense increase in aircraft noise.

We believe the FAA should develop new alternatives, where the minimization of aircraft noise should be one of the stated purposes, the lawmakers wrote. The way these alternatives have been developed pits operational efficiency versus the well-being of residents. It does not have to be that way.

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