Why do people live near airports and then complain?

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Why do people live near airports and then complain?

airport noise complaintsHelp me out. Why do people move in next to an airport and then complain about the airplanes?

This completely blows my mind. Are they so compulsive that they go through the arduous process of purchasing a home and miss the fact that there are airplanes regularly flying overhead? 

For my day job we go into White Plains, NY all the time. When I first flew in there 16 years ago, it was just rolling hills and woods off the end of runway 34. Then I started seeing houses going up. Now you go past people’s kitchen windows on a 1 mile final! Hello!?! And these aren’t cheap homes. It’s a matter of time before that becomes a problem. KHPN has been there since 1942, that won’t matter though.

white plains

White Plains, NY (KHPN)

The problem at one of our local airports is much more acute. The Ohio State University airport, also established in 1942, has been perpetually under attack by a highly organized group of “neighbors ” called the WOOSE (We Oppose Ohio State airport Expansion) – very clever. With a name that more resembles a Dr. Seuss character than a group of rational adults, their tactics to shut down this airport have ranged from the inept to the sublime. They have sound measuring equipment and are constantly scrutinizing any and all flight operations. They even have a website where you can see their mission statement, log noise complaints, and see current airport news – woose.org

Woose defined: Narnian creatures that are any non-human inhabitants of Narnia, the fantasy world created by C. S. Lewis as a setting for his The Chronicles… (Emphasis on fantasy world!)

Again almost none of the nearby homes predate the airport. According to the WOOSE website “there are 7688 homes within a 2 nm radius of OSU” – if all of them are upset, that’s a lot of uninformed homebuyers. Make me king for a day and I would deport them for their sheer ignorance, citing they are too stupid to be Americans.

As of this writing, the airport and the WOOSE people have reached a tenuous ceasefire, but its a fragile arrangement at best. Since the airport is wholly owned by the university, it wouldn’t take a lot for them to throw in the towel.

This whole deal has had the effect of stifling any future growth there – sad because it should be the prime GA airport for the Columbus metroplex. Now it’s a battleground.

KOSU airport

KOSU under attack from all sides

All over the country the alphabet groups like the EAA, AOPA, NBAA and others have done a commendable job keeping “ignorant neighbors” at bay through activism and education, but the problem will persist.

What can we do? “Cooperate and graduate.”
Whenever possible:

  • avoid over flying neighboring homes (not possible at KOSU)
  • pull that noisy prop back early (constant speed prop)
  • try to schedule flights during the midday
  • get involved. If your airport is under attack, find out what you can do to help
  • above all else try to keep your cool around these misguided souls

by Brent

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