Saturday, December 19, 2015

Evansville Regional Airport (KEVV) to hold meeting on noise issues

Evansville Regional Airport plans to have a public meeting next month to update its neighbors about the noise impact of airport operations.

Over the summer, the airport authorized engineering and design firm CHA Companies to conduct a sound study — an analysis of noise readings taken at locations on and around airport property. That data is then plugged into a computer model to produce a contour map that shows noise levels in different areas.

The airport will have a meeting to share study findings at 6 p.m. Jan. 14 at Christian Fellowship Church, 4100 Millersburg Road.

"We'll have more information to give the public at that point," Airport Executive Director Doug Joest said Monday at an Airport Authority Board meeting.

"It's not the final chapter, but it should have the (study) results."

Evansville Regional Airport previously completed a sound study in 2010. But the airport has added additional flights, and some larger aircraft, since that time. It has also completed a major construction project that shifted its main runway closer to residential areas just north of the airport.

After receiving some noise complaints from neighbors, the airport decided to do a new sound study to determine the impact of the increased air traffic.

About 50 people attended a public meeting on the topic in July, shortly after the airport announced it would conduct a new sound study.

Most of the people who attended that meeting lived in Malibu Estates, a subdivision just off Indiana 57 near the airport. Those attendees said airplane noise affected their sleep and ability to hold conversations.

Next month's meeting won't offer the final word on the topic, Joest said.

One yet-unknown factor: Whether the Federal Aviation Administration will provide money to mitigate noise issues. Generally, noise must reach a certain decibel threshold before the FAA gets involved.

By the time of next month's meeting, Joest said, the airport won't likely know whether FAA funding may be available.

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