Were Massport and the FAA just pulling some legs when they said increased airplane noise over southern Boston was only temporary?

City Council President Michelle Wu, who lives in Roslindale, is kind of pissed this morning:

People living in the southern half of Boston, like from Roxbury to Hyde Park, had been warned to expect more airplanes - and noise - when Logan rebuilt one of its runways. But that work ended weeks ago.



Free tagging: 



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I can't agree with this any more. We're in JP and it has been impossible to sleep past 5:05 when the first plane goes directly overhead. There's no good reason for this before 6:00 am. Massport always claims that it is safety related, but there are no unusual wind issues this week. The reason for it is that the airlines and FAA want to save gas so they send westward planes straight over a huge population rather than over the water causing them head east and to turn around to go west.

The public health impact of collective loss of sleep is greater than the reduction in emissions will ever have.

Back Up Alarm?

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On the up side, the roar and shaking of my JP apartment helps let me know if I overslept my alarm. But you might be onto something - I have never been as sick before this year. Ear infection, sinus infections, and head cold oy!

Totally fed up in Hyde Park.

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Totally fed up in Hyde Park. Air traffic is now my 5 a.m. alarm clock. The helicopters are even worse and they seem particularly bad when there is an event at Gillette Stadium but don't really know if there's a connection. There are times when we can't watch the news or have a conversation without closing the windows.

Please don't.

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I'll be staying on Peddocks Island again soon and last time the planes were flying so low one knocked my hat off!!!


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You think it's bad now? Wait until the GE heliport opens up!


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You must've missed the news that GE doesn't want a heliport anymore.


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Where are these helicopters flying over Hyde Park coming from and going to?, Dont know of any helicopter ports in this area. Massport says they are not coming out of Logan.


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They're probably news copters headed to and from Big Breaking News, like the flaming garbage truck o' doom yesterday.

I dunno

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I live really close to the Wu compound, and her house is maybe 50 higher than mine, but I've had the windows open the past few nights and haven't noticed much. In this particular case, I wager having a newborn in the mix doesn't help (and as I finish this sentence, a plane flies by.)

From all the people who live

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From all the people who live in East Boston, South Boston and Winthrop: boo fucking hoo, you live in a city, if you don't like the noise then move out.


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I live in another area that gets a lot of noise.

Guess what: EVERYBODY gets this noise now. The FAA isn't doing it just to make you whine.

I put in ear plugs.

I run a fan.

Get over yourselves.


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You know nothing about what the FAA has done, or wouldn't say what you say.

They decided who would suffer, and who would benefit, about 2.5 years ago. And you think its normal.

But you are oblivious to the fact that the CHANGE from before that time to NOW, is very very different. Your neighborhood has been specifically selected to bear the largest by far, burden of noise. Others were selected to not bear any, or nearly none.

If you think this is normal, you accept victimhood, based on bogus studies. And you think earplugs and fans stop your house from shaking, waking up babies and old people, as a solution. Do you wear earplugs when having guests to talk to?

Is that your lot in life? Wake up!


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Boston has a 270 degree windrose.

You aren't special - and Medford isn't special and Belmont isn't special and Lynn isn't special and Milton isn't special and Weymouth isn't special.

They take off with the wind. The land into the wind.

Grow up and get over yourself.

In Eastie. Have complained to

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In Eastie. Have complained to her office before and got the usual "FAA is a federal agency, nothing we can do" BS since paths were changed around 2013.

How the worm has turned. Get bent, Wu.

If you live in those places, that's what you chose - I didn't

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The difference is that Eastie's., Southie's and Winthrop's proximity to Logan make it impossible to avoid hearing this din, and the folks who chose to live there knew it when they settled there. Personally, I wouldn't make that choice. For Roslindale and many other places, not only is much (not all) of this *completely avoidable*, it is a brand new annoyance created by fiat.


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Btw, when I moved to East Boston in 1981, the airport was not what it is today. I was not complaining then but when I am experiencing the extreme growth at the airport, that is wrong, especially when we have two other airports. It's not normal to grow this into oblivion.

Chris P has it right.

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Chris P has it right.

This was IMPOSED upon a population, chosen to bear the burden, while sparing others. It suits the FAA and Logan, and the airlines to make more money from departure fees. Mostly its based in completely misguided (to put it nicely) studies that told the FAA what they wanted to hear. No Significant Impact to the population in question.

Let me repeat that ...a finding/conclusion of No Significant Impact is the basis for why you have 10x the number of planes overhead than you did compared to 3 years ago.

Are you kidding? You signed

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Are you kidding? You signed up for that noise when you got a discount on your place because of it. No one who moves right next to the airport gets to complain. You knew what you were getting into.

No, I didn't get a discount

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The only discount is in your imagination.
33L communities paid full price.
Others bought their property before logan expanded and condensed flight paths.
This isn't just a noise issue, it is a Health Justice issue.

More early am noise

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You say move if we don't like living in the city? The airport should not be allowed to make living conditions unbearable. Overdue in regionalizing, moving traffic to Worcester and Hanscom, or Bradley and TF Greene as most metro areas have done. Massport should not be allowed to let Logan grow....period. Any notion of what life will be like when Terminal E expands and flights will literally be 24/7, so much worse than what we all are experiencing.

Worcester airport

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Thank deregulation. Now that Worcester has become accustomed to the peace and quiet, the Worcester airport is not a reliable alternative. It is buried between multiple residential neighborhoods with no easy highway access. Of those neighborhoods, the Salisbury/Tatnuck sections (think Beacon Hill and BackBay but in a small provincial city full of residents who grew up there and don't like change) are loaded with people with money who would get very upset with any expansion. Especially since their property values in that area of the city have steadily climbed in the absence of a fully functioning airport.


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You obviously never lived in a flight path for that place when it was a more active airbase. Windowbreaking noise from an entire air wing arriving at 2:30 am in planes not built to be quiet.


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You know where that is, right?

Why not just have people fly into Newark and hop a train to Boston from there.

To Big whose bird is probably anything but

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If you like noise run away to the circus. But they probably would kick you out because they have enough sense to not make unnecessary noise.

But if you need to whine about what others feel then see a therapist.

Then people in Malden,

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Then people in Malden, Melrose, Somerville, and Cambridge should move too? The noise situation from air planre taking off and landing at Logan is bad there also. Can start shortly after 5 AM and go past midnight. It's a health issue, has to do with quality of life,impacts property values, etc

Work NOT Completed

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'The project' was actually TWO projects

  • Resurface Runway 4R-22L -- COMPLETED near the end of June
  • Replace the 'light pier' for Runway 4R, which extends into the harbor channel, and supports lights and a navigational device that makes landing on Runway 4R safer -- NOT completed; completion expected in a week or two.

Additionally, there has been some small work on other runways.

not the real cause

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The real problem is the condensing of flights as a result of NEXT GEN RNAV.
The runway work makes it worse but there is runway work every summer.
And, the overall construction won't end until some time this November.

Massport violates their own standard operating procedure

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For those that don't know Massport condensed flight paths after switching over to Next Gen RNAV, creating highways in the sky--low flying planes coming every 60-90 seconds for HOURS.

These paths USED to be dispersed and the pain was shared. They are not longer circling over the water like the used to. They also changed to a 24/7 schedule with planes departing all through the night. Many pilots are NOT even following the RNAV path and flying LOWER.

Massport is an organization that violates there own standard operating procedure. Massport's operative is "confuse, obfuscate, delay" and won't engage with the communities they serve transparently. Reach out to your state and local reps and demand regular public hearings with Massport. File online complaints as well.
Contact these groups on FB or Online

Boston West Fair Skies ( Medford, Cambridge, Somerville, Belmont, Watertown)

Boston South Fair Skies (Dorchester, Hyde park, JP, Roslindale, Hull, Hingham, Milton etc)

Fair Skies Nation (Greater Boston)

Logan Air Traffic Noise

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It's important to not confuse Massport/Logan with the FAA. Massport only controls the Logan infrastructure. Control over air traffic is by the FAA which only answers to Congress and the airline industry. Choice of runways to use is entirely up the FAA air traffic controllers at Logan and influenced by wind and runway conditions. What the ATC staff could do is to stay on midnight procedure directing 5AM traffic east out over the harbor until 6:30. However, that traffic makes destination turns earlier than the pilots should and so creates excess noise for Hingham and Hull. The only real solution is for Congress to change air traffic regulations so that the basic rules are designed to minimize environmental consequences for any traffic under 6000 feet and to back it up with penalties on the airlines & pilots that violate the rules. Also, to separate the regulatory and control functions of the FAA into separate agencies. Right now the FAA as a regulator is captive to the desires of the industry and those of us underneath have to live with the consequences of the airline industry cost and profit motives.

Two Corrections

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Massport DOES NOT select flight paths or procedures (essentially, the navigation system used by aircraft on a given flight path). The FAA selects the flight paths and procedures to be used at any given time. As a Federal agency, the FAA is not subject to Mass. law or politics.

NextGen (which means GPS in this context) almost entirely affects DEPARTURES, not arrivals. Most arrivals to Logan have ILS (Instrument Landing System) guidance, and have had for decades. While annoying to some, these routes have not changed for 20, 30 ... even 50 years.

The departure path most affected by NextGen/GPS at Logan is Runway 33L departures. They fly over (in order) East Boston, Chelsea, Everett, Medford. Then the path splits and many communities are over-flown: Arlington, Winchester, Somerville, Watertown, Cambridge, etc.

Departures from Runway 9 that fly over Boston -- Southie, downtown, Roxbury, Rossie, etc -- are less affected by NextGen/GPS. Mostly, they're following an environmentally approved route that has court approval.

Who gives a $hit about landing?

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I live in JP. The runway that sends these planes over my house did not exist when I bought my home 15+ years ago (well, it did but was too short for passenger jets). What is interesting is that apparently the "environmental conditions" that affect the safety of the aircraft only exists on takeoffs, not landings. That is apparent since there are NEVER landings on the flight path over Roxbury/JP/Roslindale/Milton. They only takeoff.

Takeoff is totally different from landing since the plane is operating under full power. On landings the plane is basically gliding and the engines are used minimally in order to keep altitude and adjust course. The engines are what make the noise, not just the fact a plane is going through the air.

The FAA approved this flight path to save the environment, or so the Obama administration sold it as such. It is really a gift to the airlines as this flight path (and many like it at airports around the country that go over concentrated populations) was not permitted until the Obama administration. They want it to save time and fuel. But it was not permitted because of local opposition. Basically Obama said I have a pen and a phone, so call me and for a large campaign contribution I will use my pen to approve changes to screw the exact people that put me into office. Fuck them, they should have known better. Besides, at least I'm not a Republican.

Airlines above people sold as saving the environment = Hope and Change.

And here is my citation: https://www.faa.gov/air_traffic/environmental_issues/ared_documentation/...


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Nextgen puts all those flights directly over my house in Roxbury- some at very low altitude. It was not like this when I moved here. Now it's near nonstop and almost impossible to have a conversation outside. I can hear them through my earplugs in the morning.

What you just described

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Is the relationship between FAA and Massport that utterly lacks accountability and responsibility. It is set up this way intentionally so that neither has to answer for anything and can continue to sell out citizens.
Next Gen RNAV was an FAA directive in response to a request from congress to green the industry, specifically NY's Chucky Schumer. Massport's responsibility was to implement it. They F'd it up. They also aren't compliant in their reporting.
They are also behind/non compliant in changing over to required software, why?
The old software is tweaked to make them look better. The also abruptly ended the legally required Blans study with funds remaining. Apparently they didn't want that data published.
Many airports have been able to work with FAA directive better than Massport has. The are nation wide, the WORST.


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My understanding is that Brookline is treated as a special case. They get no flights. How did Brooklinites manage that?

Law Suit should be filed

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Someone in Brookline filed a lawsuit thats why they dont have airplane noise. Boston needs to file a lawsuit to stop this noise for the tort of nuisance as well as discrimination, thats the only way its going to stop. Telling Massport about the noise does no good. The lawsuit should be filed against the airlines that fly over the area as well as the FAA. The airlines make billions of dollars each year, their officers make millions of dollars each year. Some of this money should be going to soundproofing homes

Can you supply the ruling in that case?

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Someone in Brookline filed a lawsuit thats why they dont have airplane noise.

This would be publicly available.

In other words, bullshit.

Pathetic "Transportation Change Champions"

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For those who many not know, Massport's Flávio Leo won the " Presidential Transportatiion Change Champion Award" from Obama in 2014.

That's right, Massport execs got awarded for ruining our neighborhoods.
And they did this while protecting their own. Flávio lives in the quiet valley that is Newton.

Anyone affected by this should be raising hell and gathering their pitchforks.


Conspiracy Theory Lunatics Read Here

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Oh yes, the body thetans that live in your tinfoil hat may have told you that the FAA and Massport have moved all the planes over YOUR neighborhood because they are out to get YOU and only YOU!

Just like your hat is actually aluminum and not tin foil, there are actual FACTS and STATISTICS to show you that EVERYBODY is getting hit with jet noise now - not just your special self!


Didn't know that Michelle was

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Didn't know that Michelle was a neighbor....

Anyway, I grew up in JP, and in later years, my mom would constantly complain about the flight paths over the house. Oddly enough, I didn't seem to notice them.

I live is Rozzy now, and haven't really noticed any change in airline traffic. Either I sleep really deeply, or they're not at my end of town.

Submit noise complaints

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This new norm of constant low-flying aircraft will not change unless we log noise complaints. They are easy to submit online:


I live over five miles from Logan and never had constant airplane noise until this winter when they started flying tight RNAV patterns directly over my house at low altitudes, often till 2am. We have significant sleep loss and it even interrupts TV and conversations during the day. There goes another one now...