Aircraft noise continues to be an important issue facing airports and communities throughout the United States. Formal standards were established by Congress under the Aviation Safety and Noise Abatement Act of 1979, which created a single system for determining the exposure of individuals to airport noise, and a standardized airport noise compatibility planning program. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) prescribed a set of procedures and standards under the U.S. Code of Federal Regulations, Title 14 Part 150, and entitled “Airport Noise Compatibility Planning”, commonly referred to as Part 150.
What is Part 150?
Part 150 is a voluntary FAA program that sets guidelines for airport operators to document aircraft noise exposure, and to establish noise abatement and compatible land use programs. These noise abatement procedures and/or mitigation programs must be approved by the FAA in order to qualify for potential federal funding. A Part 150 Study consists of two technical elements:
- Noise Exposure Maps (NEMs), which identify the levels of airport noise in areas around the airport
- Noise Compatibility Program (NCP), which are measures designed to reduce noise and incompatible land uses within the noise exposure area
The NEMs are created using computer modeling software – FAA’s Integrated Noise Model (INM) – to describe the existing and future five-year conditions and resultant aircraft noise levels. Aircraft noise exposure is depicted on each NEM as average annual noise contours developed using the airport’s runway layout, the number and types of aircraft operating as well as time of day/night, and the routes used in arriving and departing. The NEMs also show land uses underlying the contour in the noise-impacted areas near the airport.
The NCP is a summary of analyses and proposed actions that the FAA, airport operators, active airlines, and communities near the airport can perform to reduce existing and future aircraft noise and land use incompatibilities. These actions may include noise abatement measures, noise mitigation measures, and/or preventive measures.
The airport operator submits the Part 150 Study to the FAA, who in turn issues a Record of Approval (ROA). The ROA includes a description of all measures proposed to the FAA, FAA approval or disapproval of each measure, and a description of possible methods of implementing and funding the approved measures.
VNY Part 150 Study
In April 2007, Los Angeles World Airports (LAWA) submitted the Van Nuys Airport (VNY) Part 150 Study (Study), consisting of the NEM and the NCP, to the FAA for review and approval. The NCP contained 35 individual Mitigation Measures, which are divided into four categories as listed below:
- Four (4) Mitigation Measures dealing with development and incompatible land use around VNY;
- Seven (7) Mitigation Measures dealing with helicopters;
- Seventeen (17) Mitigation Measures dealing with airport operations; and
- Seven (7) Mitigation Measures identified as requiring submittal of a Part 161 Study with FAA approval needed for implementation.
The VNY Part 150 Study identified 7 of the 35 Mitigation Measures in the NCP as requiring a Part 161 Study to implement. LAWA conducted the Part 161 Study from 2005 to 2010. Please use this link to view information on the Part 161 Study.
In April 2009, the FAA accepted the VNY NEMs for calendar years 2001 and 2006 as being in compliance with the requirements of the Part 150 regulations. In October 2009, the FAA recommended that LAWA update the VNY NEM’s, primarily due to the age of the maps, and resubmit them to FAA for approval.
In October 2009 the FAA issued a Record of Approval notifying LAWA that it approved 15 of the 35 proposed measures (3 of the 14 Noise Abatement Elements, 2 of the 3 Noise Mitigation Elements, both of the Land Use Elements, and 8 of the 16 Program Management elements) of the NCP. The FAA’s approval was deemed to be effective on October 16, 2009, and required LAWA to update the NEMs for the proposed sound insulation element to become eligible for federal funding.
On October 9, 2012, the FAA notified LAWA of their acceptance of the VNY NEMs that were submitted to the FAA on December 14, 2011.
Van Nuys Airport Part 150 Study (February 2007)
This is the full VNY Part 150 Study, dated February 2007 that was submitted to the FAA. It includes the report containing the NCP, the NEM’s, and the three volumes of background appendices. To view the reports and appendices, please click on the links below:
- Van Nuys Airport Part 150 Study (File Size 6MB)
- VNY Part 150 Study Background Appendices Vol. 1 of 3 (21MB)
- VNY Part 150 Study Background Appendices Vol. 2 of 3 (10MB)
- VNY Part 150 Study Background Appendices Vol. 3 of 3 (25MB)
(File size 41MB). This is the full report including all appendices is a large file and may take some time to download. You may download individual chapters and appendices below.
Van Nuys Airport Updated 14 C.F.R. Part 150 Noise Exposure Maps (December 2011)
- Cover, Title Page, Sponsor's Certification, and Table-of-Contents (File size 1.3MB)
- Chapter 1: Introduction (File size 620 KB)
- Chapter 2: Land Use Compatibility Guidelines and Standards (File size 113 KB)
- Chapter 3: LAWA Noise Compatibility Planning at VNY (File size 660KB)
- Chapter 4: Existing and Forecast Noise Exposure Maps (File size 500 KB)
- Chapter 5: Development of Noise Contours (File size: 11MB)
- Chapter 6: Public Consultation (File size60KB)
- Appendix A: FAA Acceptance of Previous NEM's and Related Communications (File size 1.3 MB)
- Appendix B: FAA Record of Approval for NCP and Federal Register Notice (File size: 6MB)
- Appendix C: Noise Terminology (File size 500 KB)
- Appendix D: VNY Noise Ordinances (File size 2 MB)
- Appendix E: FAA Opinion Regarding ANCA Grandfather Status of Noisier Aircraft Phaseout (File size 170 KB)
- Appendix F: Requests to FAA Regarding Non-Standard INM Modeling (File size: 10MB)
- Appendix G: Requests to FAA Regarding INM Aircraft Type Modeling Substitutes (File Size 1.2 MB)
- Appendix H: FAA Response to Non-Standard INM Modeling and Aircraft Type Substitutes (File size 860 KB)
- Appendix I: Documentation Related to FAA review and Approval of Forecasts (File size 3 MB)
- Appendix J: Documentation Related to Draft Noise Exposure Maps Notice Review and Comment Opportunities (File size 2 MB)
- Appendix K: Documentation Related to Presentations to and Discussions with Citizens Advisory Council Regarding the Draft Noise Exposure Maps (File size 3.5 MB)
- Appendix L: Written Comments Received During Consultation (File Size 4 MB)
During the NEM update project, several presentations were made to the Board of Airport Commissioners and the VNY Citizens Advisory Council. To view these presentations please click on the links below:
- VNY Part 150 & Part 161 Update to BOAC 2-1-10 . This presentation was also given to the VNY CAC on 2-2-10, which also discussed the Part 150. You can view the minutes of the CAC meeting by clicking here
- VNY Noise Management Update to BOAC 5-3-10.
- VNY Draft Updated 2011 & 2016 Part 150 Noise Exposure Maps presentation to CAC on 10-4-11.