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NEWS Last modified on February 2, 2017

Dramatic fall in noise complaints at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport

Noise complaints at Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport dropped by 38% last year, the gateway attributing the decline to the development of enhanced programmes, procedures and infrastructure aimed at mitigating the airport's noise impact on the surrounding community.

The airport's Noise Management Report for 2016, released today, reveals that overall complaints fell from 386 complaints in 2015 to 236 complaints last year.

Complaints related to the ferry and mainland operations declined by a significant 89%, going from 26 complaints in 2015 to just three complaints in 2016, while 99% of the complaints received by the airport’s Noise Management Office were handled within the five-day window that Billy Bishop Airport adheres to as part of PortsToronto’s commitment to being a responsive member of the waterfront community.

The Noise Management Report follows on the heels of the 2015 Noise Exposure Contour compliance Report conducted by Transport Canada that confirms that Billy Bishop Airport continues to operate within its strict Noise Exposure Forecast as required under the Tripartite Agreement.

This has been the case with all previously commissioned reports dating back to 2008 notes operator, PortsToronto.

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“Operating an airport that is part of a thriving, mixed-use urban waterfront requires the right balance to ensure that operations keep pace with the surrounding community and that measures are in place to mitigate the impacts associated with running a successful airport,” says Gene Cabral, executive vice president of PortsToronto and Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. 

“In 2016, we once again worked together with the community to identify solutions that assist with our noise reduction efforts and successfully implemented new noise mitigation infrastructure at Billy Bishop Airport, such as upgrading the airport’s Noise Monitoring Terminals (NMTs) while resurfacing the runway. 

"In 2017, these efforts will reach a new level as we open and begin utilizing our new Ground Run-up Enclosure, which will only be the second of its kind in Canada.

PortsToronto claims that it is particularly significant that 2016 saw a substantial decrease in noise-related complaints given that a large-scale, overnight airfield rehabilitation project has been underway since June.
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The project to replace the existing aging civil and electrical infrastructure (pavements and lighting) for the airport’s runways, taxiways and apron areas, also involves the construction of a Ground Run-up Enclosure (GRE) to dampen the acoustic impact from engine run-ups which are required and regulated as part of standard aircraft maintenance.

Another important infrastructure project that continues to deliver on its promises is the pedestrian tunnel that was opened in July 2015.

The tunnel, which gives passengers the option to walk between the mainland and the airport 100-feet beneath the surface of Lake Ontario, has effectively improved mainland ground traffic and passenger flow and has entirely eliminated pressure points for travellers and surges in traffic demand at the mainland terminal and along Eireann Quay.

Billy Bishop Airport welcomed 2.7 million passengers (+9%) in 2016.

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