MSP Noise Oversight Committee

The MAC established the MSP Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) in August 2002 to bring industry and community representatives together to address aircraft noise issues at MSP and to bring policy recommendations to the Metropolitan Airports Commission. The cities of Bloomington, Eagan, Mendota Heights, Minneapolis and Richfield each have a representative on the committee. The cities of Apple Valley, Burnsville, Inver Grove Heights, St. Louis Park, St. Paul, Sunfish Lake, and Edina are represented through an At-Large membership. Each representative serves a two-year term and each city appoints its representative and an alternate. The At-Large cities appoint one representative and one alternate from their member cities to represent all of them for the two-year term. The aviation industry is represented by a Scheduled Air Carrier, a Cargo Air Carrier, a Charter/Scheduled Operator, a Chief Pilot of an airline serving MSP, the Minnesota Business Aviation Association (MBAA) and an At-Large member. All industry representatives, except the MBAA representative, are appointed by the MSP Airline and Airport Affairs Committee. More information about the NOC can be found in its bylaws.

NOC Work Plans and Accomplishments

Each year, the NOC establishes a Work Plan. The 2014 Work Plan is linked here: NOC Work Plan. Please see the list below for past NOC accomplishments.

2013 MSP Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) Accomplishments

  • Amended the NOC By-laws to include the City of Edina as an At-large Community member
  • Reviewed the MSP Annual Noise Contour Report (assessing the 2012 actual noise contour) published per the requirements of the MSP 2007 noise litigation Consent Decree
  • Conducted the Annual Scheduled Nighttime Operations Assessment, which found that nighttime operations of modified Stage 3 aircraft are minimal
  • Reviewed the MAC letter to the FAA regarding a framework for future FAA community outreach related to PBN outlining timing, local FAA leadership participation, and resource allocation
  • Reviewed and supported a Consent Decree First Amendment to extend noise mitigation eligibility based on actual annual noise contours with eligibility qualification beginning in 2014
  • Conducted the Annual Runway Use Analysis, finding that north-flow operations made up approximately 63% of total operations
  • Reviewed the FAA's Runway 17 westbound RNAV river departure implementation plans
  • Reviewed the status of the 2007 64 to 60 DNL noise mitigation program implementation process at MSP, which is in its final phase and will be completed in 2014
  • Conducted a Runway 30L and 30R Westbound Departure Study that verified FAA implementation of three divergent headings (320- , 340-, and 360-degree) for northbound departures
  • Reviewed and prepared findings responsive to mobile noise monitoring requests, based upon the NOC-established review process
  • Reviewed FAA Center of Excellence/PARTNER, TRB and FICAN initiatives
  • Conducted the MSP Annual Fleet Mix Assessment, which determined the use of modified Stage 3 aircraft is minimal at MSP
  • Analyzed the use of aircraft density graphics in the monthly Technical Advisor's Reports
  • Continued to review input received from the quarterly public input meetings and prepared documents responsive to comments and questions

2012 MSP Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) Accomplishments

  • Facilitated implementation of increased use of Runway 30R 320-, 340-, and 360-degree departure heading dispersion in response to City of Minneapolis northbound departure operation concentration concerns
  • Completed review of the MSP 2020 Improvements Draft Environmental Assessment/Environmental Assessment Worksheet noise analysis
  • Conducted a dialogue with Mr. Dennis McGrann, Executive Director of the National Organization to Ensure a Sound-controlled Environment (NOISE), on the health effects related to aircraft noise, resulting in the MAC sending letters to the Airport Cooperative Research Program (ACRP) and the Partnership for AiR Transportation Noise and Emission Reduction (PARTNER) programs offering MSP as a willing participant in their ongoing studies related to methods for understanding aircraft annoyance and sleep disturbance related to health effects from noise
  • Reviewed the annual MSP Noise Contour Report (assessing the 2011 actual noise contour), published per the requirements of the MSP noise litigation Consent Decree
  • Conducted the Annual Scheduled Nighttime Operations Assessment
  • Conducted a review of Noise Abatement Departure Profiles (NADPs)
  • Developed a mobile noise monitoring request form and review process, including an information page on the MAC Noise Program Office website
  • Conducted a comprehensive analysis of runway use during different operational flows at MSP, which included an assessment of overall and nighttime runway use patterns and the specifics surrounding Runways 12L and 30R departure operations and Runway 17 departures, including direction of flight and Minnesota River Valley Departure Procedure usage
  • Reviewed the FAA's Runway 17 westbound RNAV river departure procedure implementation plans
  • Reviewed status of the 64 to 60 DNL noise mitigation program implementation process at MSP and homeowner satisfaction
  • Conducted a noise analysis of the RNAV procedures developed by the FAA
  • Conducted a public information program, including two public open houses, highlighting the RNAV procedures developed by the FAA
  • Published MSP noise procedures on the WhisperTrack website for enhanced dissemination to pilots
  • Evaluated aircraft fleet mix trends at MSP
  • Revisited the possibility of a Runway 35 River Visual Approach Procedure
  • Reviewed FAA Center of Excellence/PARTNER, TRB and FICAN initiatives
  • Completed review of FAA Performance-Based Navigation procedure design and implementation compliance with NOC noise criteria
  • Continued to review input received from the quarterly public input meetings

2011 MSP Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) Accomplishments

  • Conducted a comprehensive analysis of runway use during different operational flows at MSP that included an assessment of overall and nighttime runway use patterns and use of the 120-degree departure heading off Runway 17
  • Development of Performance-Based Navigation (PBN) procedure design noise criteria for procedure development/implementation at MSP
  • Reviewed annual MSP Noise Contour Report (assessing the 2010 actual noise contour) published per the requirements of the MSP noise litigation Consent Decree
  • Reviewed MSP 2020 Improvements Environmental Assessment (EA) draft forecast results and public information process
  • Conducted Annual Scheduled Nighttime Operations Assessment
  • Evaluated Inver Grove Heights departure overflight concerns
  • Reviewed status of the 64 to 60 DNL noise mitigation program implementation process at MSP and homeowner satisfaction
  • Began discussion on possible health effects from airport noise with a presentation by SMAAC President Jim Spensley
  • Evaluated west side cargo operations
  • Continued to review input received from the quarterly public input meetings.
  • Redesigned www.macnoise.com website
  • Evaluated aircraft fleet mix trends at MSP
  • Revisited the possibility of a Runway 35 River Visual Approach Procedure
  • Reviewed FAA Center of Excellence/PARTNER, TRB and FICAN Initiatives
  • Reviewed residents’ concerns about FAA departure heading usage over south Minneapolis and Richfield

2010 MSP Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) Accomplishments

  • Reviewed status of the 64 to 60 DNL noise mitigation program implementation process at MSP
  • Nighttime Runway Use - completed the dialogue with the FAA on nighttime parallel runway usage
  • Developed and distributed the MSP Pilot Guide
  • Reviewed the MSP Long-Term Comprehensive Plan (LTCP) Update
  • Reviewed annual MSP Noise Contour Report (assessing the 2009 actual noise contour) published per the requirements of the MSP noise litigation Consent Decree
  • Conducted Annual Scheduled Nighttime Operations Assessment
  • Monitored the successful installation of the Multilateration Flight Tracking System
  • Deployed real-time FlightTracker on the macnoise.com website
  • Developed Runway 35 Optimized Profile Descent (OPD) procedure for incorporation into MSP airspace-wide Performance Based Navigation (PBN) procedure development and implementation
  • Actively participated in RNAV procedure development at MSP, resulting in the FAA embarking on an airspace-wide RNAV procedure development and implementation project at MSP that will include the Runway 12L and 12R RNAV departure procedures and the Runway 35 OPD procedure
  • Developed the Monthly Crossing-in-the-Corridor Operations Report
  • Continued to review input received through the quarterly Public Input Meetings
  • Revisited the possibility of a Runway 35 River Visual Approach Procedure
  • Received a briefing from Delta Air Lines Technical Pilots on Delta’s Performance Based Navigation (PBN) efforts

2009 MSP Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) Accomplishments

  • Reviewed status of the 64 to 60 DNL noise mitigation program implementation process at MSP
  • Analyzed the environmental/noise effects/benefits of Runways 12L, 12R and 17 RNAV departure procedures
  • Finalized and submitted Runways 12L, 12R and 17 RNAV departure procedures to the MAC for submittal to the FAA for procedure approval
  • Reviewed the PARTNER Noise Quest Website
  • Reviewed annual MSP Noise Contour Report (assessing the 2008 actual noise contour) published per the requirements of the MSP noise litigation Consent Decree
  • Conducted Annual Scheduled Nighttime Operations Assessment
  • Developed Runway 12L/30R Reconstruction Communication Plan
  • Continued to review input received through the quarterly Public Input Meetings
  • Conducted nighttime runway use analysis
  • Began a dialogue with the FAA on nighttime use of the parallel runways
  • Analyzed the feasibility of Runways 12L and 12R departure turns at three miles
  • Revisited the possibility of a Runway 35 River Visual Approach Procedure
  • Developed a MACNOMS System Enhancement Plan
  • Initiated discussion of possible Continuous Descent Approach (CDA) testing at MSP
  • Conducted a review of aircraft fleet mix trends at MSP following Delta Air Lines’ acquisition of Northwest Airlines
  • Reviewed ground operations and related noise on the west side ramp area
  • Received an update on community implementation of polices on residential development in the 64 to 60 DNL noise contours

2008 Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) Accomplishments

  • Reviewed status of the 64 to 60 DNL noise mitigation program implementation process at MSP
  • Developed home prioritization methodology for implementation of the 64 to 60 DNL noise mitigation program around MSP
  • Reviewed the Final PARTNER Low Frequency Noise Study in the context of the low frequency noise topic at MSP
  • Implemented updates to the voluntary nighttime operations agreement with the airlines at MSP and developed monthly nighttime scheduling reports for tracking performance
  • Per the City of Eagan’s request, the NOC continued the analysis of nighttime Runway 17 departure trends during southeast operational flows at MSP and continued the related dialogue with the FAA. This resulted in a reduction of nighttime Runway 17 departure operations during southeast operational flows at MSP consistent with the provision of the approved Runway Use System.
  • In response to concerns from the City of Apple Valley, the NOC developed and implemented a Pilot Communication program to increase pilots’ awareness of the issue of landing gear noise and to request their consideration of avoiding extended periods of flight with the gear extended on approach to MSP. This resulted in the development of text on the MSP pilot information web page (on the MAC Noise Program website) describing the gear extension concerns; an update was made to the Northwest Airlines pilot scheduling website providing a link to the pilot information page on the MAC Noise Program website, and a communication was sent from the Northwest Airlines Chief Pilot’s Office to all Northwest Airlines pilots describing the issue, directing them to the MSP pilot information web page, and requesting that pilots do their best to avoid extended periods of flight with the gear extended while approaching MSP.
  • Annual MSP Noise Contour Report (assessing the 2007 actual noise contour) was developed and published per the requirements of the MSP noise litigation Consent Decree
  • Reviewed flight track data acquisition technology to be utilized in the ANOMS upgrade at MSP and consideration of community system requirements
  • Developed and supported simulator testing (in Northwest Airlines simulators) of Area Navigation (RNAV) departure procedures for Runways 17, 12L and 12R to reduce noise impacts at MSP. This has resulted in a cooperative process with Northwest Airlines and the FAA to ultimately implement these departures as public use procedures at MSP. A trial of the procedures is planned for January 2009 with implementation to follow.
  • Reviewed Inver Grove Heights Runway Use concerns
  • Provided input on MAC Noise and Operations Monitoring System (MACNOMS) functionality
  • Reviewed nighttime runway closure review and the development of a related community communication program
  • Conducted Minneapolis departure heading analysis
  • Reviewed the Runway 35 River Visual Approach Procedure
  • Reviewed Global Positioning System (GPS) Satellite Landing System (SLS) 4000 Ground Based Augmentation System (GBAS) installation at MSP
  • Completed Annual Scheduled Nighttime Operations Assessment
  • Continued to review input received through the quarterly Public Input Meetings

2007 Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) Accomplishments

  • Analyzed departure flight track headings off of Runway 17 and associated community concerns with the 190-degree departure heading constraint. The NOC’s analyses and work with the FAA resulted in the implementation of the 215-degree departure heading off Runway 17, moving more westbound departure operations over the unpopulated Minnesota River Valley.
  • Analyzed runway use at MSP, per the planned runway usage, and discovered low Runway 17/35 usage figures. The Committee sent a letter to the FAA questioning actual runway use statistics compared to the runway use numbers published in the environmental documentation leading up to the opening of Runway 17. As a result, it was discovered that the FAA was moving forward with the final phase of Runway 17/35 integration at MSP. The result was Runway17/35 operational numbers that are now consistent with the previously planned runway usage.
  • Reviewed the operation of MSP with Runway 30L/12R closed for construction
  • Developed a communication plan consisting of four specific elements designed to inform residents of the temporary change in operations at MSP due to the reconstruction of Runway 30L/12R
  • Received updates on the Part 150 litigation and associated developments throughout the year
  • Reviewed new state legislation regarding airport safety zones in real estate transactions
  • Analyzed compliance with the Runway 12L Runway End Departure Turn Point Procedure and approved a new reporting format for the Monthly Eagan-Mendota Heights Corridor Report that more thoroughly assesses early turns off Runway 12L, and assesses aircraft that leave the corridor boundaries over unpopulated areas but return before flying over residential areas
  • Received an update on aircraft fleet mix trends and the increase toward quieter aircraft operating at MSP
  • Reviewed concerns from Richfield residents regarding noise impacts from operations on the west side of MSP Initiated noise monitoring studies of west side aircraft engine start procedures and analyzed the data to establish the best practice for reducing engine start noise impacts in Richfield
  • Endorsed west side tenant actions to help address ramp ground noise impacts in the City of Richfield
  • Endorsed the hushkitted Stage 3 aircraft engine start procedure for west side cargo ramp operations, providing a standardized engine start procedure that reduces noise impacts in East Richfield
  • Requested that the late night/early morning B737 Kitty Hawk Air Cargo operation comply with the hushkitted aircraft engine start procedure due to low background noise levels generated when the operation occurs
  • Analyzed low monthly compliance with the Eagan-Mendota Heights Departure Corridor and communicated with the FAA on the issue, resulting in increased monthly corridor compliance
  • Reviewed options for future discussion and analysis of possible Area Navigation (RNAV) procedures at MSP to reduce noise impacts
  • Analyzed nighttime Runway 17 departure operations during southeast operational flows at MSP and sent a letter to the FAA questioning Runway 17 nighttime departures, as compared to the approved RUS at the airport, and consistency with approved procedures
  • Evaluated nighttime operations trends and updates to the Voluntary Nighttime Operations Agreement with airlines, resulting in the development of a letter to all airlines at MSP requesting voluntary compliance with the nighttime operations agreement
  • Continued to review input received through the quarterly Public Input Meetings

2006 Noise Oversight Committee (NOC) Accomplishments

  • Analyzed Runway 17/35 operations trends
  • Reviewed comments and issues south of MSP following Runway 17/35 opening
  • Continued evaluation and advocated increased use of Runway 17 2.5 nautical mile departure turn point procedure resulting in increased compliance, from a low in November 2005 of 85.1% compliance to a high of 99.2% compliance in September 2006
  • Evaluated uses of the 190-degree departure heading off Runway 17 over residential areas in northeast Burnsville during southeast operational flows, and requested the FAA open up west bound departure headings to a 230-degree heading over the uninhabited Minnesota River Valley during southeast operational flows. Discussions are ongoing with the FAA to address the issue.
  • Conducted a review of Part 150 Noise Compatibility Program noise mitigation measures from an implementation perspective
  • Received updates on Part 150 mitigation implementation issues focusing on the mold issue
  • Reviewed FAA grant funding eligibility concerns for the mitigation of a multi-family building in Bloomington. The discussion resulted in FAA approval of Part 150 grant dollars to mitigate the building as part of the MAC’s Part 150 program in the 65+ DNL.
  • Updates on the MSP 2020 plan discussions
  • Increased the number of at-large communities with a by-law modification to include the representation of the City of Apple Valley in the at-large cities group
  • Reviewed abnormally high Boeing 757 arrival noise events as measured by ANOMS and, through coordination with Northwest Airlines, determined that engine bleed valves on the aircraft were opening in a manner that created a high noise level. Subsequently, using ANOMS, MAC staff worked with Northwest Airlines staff to determine the specific aircraft. Northwest Airlines worked cooperatively with the engine manufacturer and the bleed valve manufacturer to identify the root cause and to develop a corrective action plan; Northwest Airlines took corrective action with the engine manufacturer. These efforts were a success; in May 2005, twenty-three Boeing 757 arrival aircraft showed up in the ‘Top Ten Loudest Aircraft Noise Events’ section of the Technical Advisor’s Report, many with levels in excess of 100 dB. That is compared to 2 events in May 2004 and 1 event in May 2003 (all of which were normal in noise level magnitude). In September 2006, only 4 Boeing 757 arrival aircraft showed up in the ‘Top Ten Loudest Aircraft Noise Events’ section of the Technical Advisor’s Report (all of which were normal in noise level magnitude).
  • Assessed nighttime operations and associated impacts
  • Reviewed new flight track data acquisition technologies that are available to reduce data lag times for consideration in a future ANOMS upgrade Considered supplemental noise metrics resulting in the addition of time above data in the monthly NOC Technical Advisors Report
  • Reviewed status of the FAA Center of Excellence/PARTNER initiatives
  • Reviewed updates to the Metropolitan Council Land Use Compatibility Guidelines related to airport noise
  • Reviewed the macnoise.com website and implemented site enhancements
  • Continued review and consideration of input received through the quarterly Public Input Meetings