42 communities and 19 school districts dedicated to reducing aircraft noise in the communities around O’Hare International Airport since 1996.


The O’Hare Noise Compatibility Commission Technical Committee met on Tuesday, February 20 at the Mount Prospect Village Hall. The Chicago Department of Aviation staff and consultants updated members on the Aircraft Noise Standards, permanent noise monitor installations, O’Hare Annual Operations, noise complaint system, 4th Quarter Fly Quiet Report and Interim Fly Quiet update.

Federal Noise Standards for Airplanes and Helicopters
Mr. Jeffrey Jackson, Landrum & Brown consultant, reviewed the Federal Noise Standards which were created in 1990 with the passing of Airport Noise and Capacity Act (ANCA). ANCA attempted to create a comprehensive method for regulating aircraft noise by initiating two Federal Aviation Regulations:

  • FAR Part 91: Phasing out Stage 2 aircraft before January 1, 2000; and
  • FAR Part 161: Restricts airport ability to regulate airport access based on noise
  • Stage 5 aircraft went into effect on January 1, 2018.

To read the full report click here.

Noise Monitors
Itasca and Norridge noise monitors are complete and operational. Bensenville monitor will be operational in the near future. The process to install the five remaining Chicago monitors has started with a targeted completion date of June 2018.

The 2017 average for long-term portable noise monitors measured 59.3DNL in Chicago and 64.0DNL in Itasca.

A long-term portable noise monitor will be redeployed in Bloomingdale.

O’Hare Annual Airport Operations
CDA staff reviewed O’Hare Annual Airport Operation chart. Today operations are stable at approximately 867,049 in 2017 due to increasing the size of aircraft and the airlines’ methods of calculating the number of seats needed. To view the chart, click here.

Noise Complaint System
On January 27th the CDA added a CAPTCHA feature to the noise complaint system. It requires checking boxes to complete the complaint.

The city of Chicago will systematically update its 311-system department by department. CDA will explore options to use the city software if it fulfills the needs of the aviation department. CDA wants a system that can incorporate phone, email, social media and text applications.

Fourth Quarter Fly Quiet Report
The average start time for 4Q 2017 was 10:30 p.m. The average stop time was 5:44 a.m. The average nightly time in Fly Quiet Mode (FQM) was 7:13 hours while the average nightly operations in FQM were 102. For a complete report, click here.

Interim Fly Quiet Report
CDA staff submitted their Interim Fly Quiet report to the FAA on February 15th. They estimate it will take an approximately one year to implement the plan. The process will include modeling to analyze the environmental impact, a draft report, public workshops, address resident comments and final approval. The report will analyze more than just noise and address all environmental categories. Once approved, the Interim Fly Quiet Program will be in effect until the commissioning of Runway 9C/27C in fall 2020. 

Technical Committee Chair Catherine Dunlap reminded the committee that there will be a Departure Panel Discussion at the May 4, 2017 general meeting. She encouraged members to submit any questions they’d like to see discussed.

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