Noise FAQ

What are the Airport Authority’s responsibilities?

The Airport Authority’s responsibilities involve the safe operation and maintenance of the Hollywood Burbank Airport passenger terminal and airfield. The Airport is identified as part of the National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems and is federally-obligated to operate as a public-use airport.

Does the Airport Authority oversee or regulate air traffic control?

The Airport Authority does not oversee or regulate the airlines, pilots, flight paths, or other issues related to air traffic control. The Airport Authority does discuss these issues with the appropriate parties.

What agency is responsible for determining flight paths and the air traffic system?

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is the agency that manages the national airspace and air traffic system. Flight paths in controlled airspace are determined by standard arrival and departure procedures published by the FAA, and by air traffic control aircraft separation requirements, standardized traffic patterns to runways, and aircraft operators.

An FAA sponsored video outlining Southern California Metroplex procedures is available at https://www.faa.gov/nextgen/nextgen_near_you/community_involvement/socal/

To whom should I express concerns about NextGen?

The FAA is the agency that evaluates and publishes instrument flight procedures and administers the NextGen program.  Concerns should be filed with the FAA.

What about proposed amendments to the departure procedures at Hollywood Burbank Airport?

The FAA has indicated that it intends to perform an Environmental Assessment (EA) for its proposed amendments to the SLAPP and OROSZ instrument departure procedures from Hollywood Burbank Airport.  EAs include a public comment period as part of the process. Community members who have concerns about the FAA’s proposed amendments to the flight paths should also contact their elected officials.

What has the Airport Authority done to date on behalf of residents’ complaints?

The Airport Authority has taken numerous steps with the FAA to obtain relief for residents’ complaints and these efforts are ongoing.   Some of the recent steps include:

  • In 2018, at the request of area residents, the Airport Authority funded an independent study by Landrum & Brown to examine noise impacts in communities in the vicinity of the Airport. The results of that study identified a shift in departure paths to the south over the last 10 years.
  • The Airport Authority expressed its own concerns about the locations of the amended departure procedure waypoints in an August 21, 2018 letter to the FAA. You can view the letter here.
  • In accordance with Section 175 of the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018, the Airport Authority sent a December 10, 2018 letter to the FAA urging a feasibility analysis for dispersal headings or other lateral track variations. The letter sought to achieve a flight path dispersal so that no single community is disproportionately impacted by aircraft noise.  You can find the letter here. On March 27, 2019, the FAA responded to that letter, stating “The FAA will consider your comments regarding the feasibility of dispersal heading or other lateral track variations during the EA process.” You can find the letter here.

What did Landrum & Brown conclude in its final report on the Hollywood Burbank Airport flight path analysis?

The Landrum & Brown report concluded that departure flight tracks have shifted south over the past ten years, and described several possible contributing factors. Although the FAA’s NextGen Transportation System is one of several contributing factors, the report also cited steadily rising summer temperatures since 2012 and an increased number of aircraft in Southern California’s airspace as factors that have contributed to the southward shift in departure paths from Hollywood Burbank Airport. The complete report is available on the Airport’s website.

How do flights departing from VNY impact air traffic at BUR?

The FAA sent a letter to Senator Feinstein and Senator Harris addressing departure routes out of both airports.  You can find the letter here.

Will the location of the replacement passenger terminal affect flight paths?

The location of the replacement passenger terminal will not be a factor that affects flight paths. Additional information about the replacement passenger terminal, including why it is needed, is available on the replacement terminal website.

Since Burbank voters passed Measure B, approving the replacement passenger terminal, are there any additional noise protections in place for the community?

With the passage of Measure B, the Airport Authority is required to continue supporting efforts to implement a mandatory curfew. Per the Development Agreement with the City of Burbank, the Airport Authority continues to work with the City and other elected officials to seek new avenues for meaningful relief from nighttime aircraft noise. The replacement passenger terminal website contains additional information about the project, including the complete Development Agreement between the City of Burbank and the Airport Authority, as well as frequently asked questions related to nighttime noise.

What is the voluntary nighttime noise curfew? Does it apply to all flights at Hollywood Burbank Airport?

The voluntary nighttime noise curfew is a standing request to passenger airlines that takeoffs and arrivals not be scheduled between the hours of 10 p.m. to 6:59 a.m. local time. This request is not directed at:

  • General aviation aircraft originally certified as Stage 3 or quieter
  • Military aircraft operations
  • Cargo operations
  • Police aircraft operations
  • Medical emergency aircraft operations

Can the Airport Authority impose a mandatory nighttime noise curfew, cap the number of flights at Hollywood Burbank Airport, or enforce a penalty on aircraft noise during daytime hours?

Per the Airport Noise & Capacity Act of 1990 (ANCA), the Airport Authority cannot adopt a new noise rule, such as a mandatory nighttime noise curfew, unless the FAA deems that a Part 161 Study has successfully made the case for an exception to ANCA.

The Airport Authority completed a Part 161 Study in 2009, the first ever accepted as “complete” by the FAA. The FAA determined that the Study did not justify the imposition of a mandatory curfew.

Similarly, the Airport Authority cannot favor or privilege airlines over one another. Per federal law, the Airport Authority cannot cap flights or passenger numbers, or decline new service from an airline.

Why are there no representatives from Los Angeles on the Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority?

The Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport Authority is a separate government agency created under a joint powers agreement between the Cities of Burbank, Glendale, and Pasadena in 1977 for the sole purpose of owning and operating Hollywood Burbank Airport.

The Airport Authority was formed under state law in response to the sale of the Airport by Lockheed Aircraft Corporation. The City Councils of Glendale and Pasadena agreed to act in concert with the Burbank City Council to create a new public agency for the purpose of owning and operating the Airport, while the City Councils of Los Angeles and San Fernando turned down the opportunity to participate in the new agency.

How do I report an aircraft noise incident to the Airport Authority?

If you would like to report an aircraft noise incident, you can do so online through the Airport’s WebTrak or by contacting the toll-free, 24-hour Noise Complaint Hotline at 1.800.441.0409. If the incident in question has violated the Airport Authority’s noise rules, the Airport Authority will impose a fine on the aircraft operator or operating company. Additional information is available on the Noise Issues page of the Airport website.

How many passengers use Hollywood Burbank Airport annually?

In 2018, Hollywood Burbank Airport recorded 5,263,972 passengers, still below the peak year of 2007, when the Airport recorded 5,921,336 passengers.

How many total flights operate out of Hollywood Burbank Airport annually?

In 2018, the Airport recorded 132,023 total aircraft operations.  The number is comprised of 56,828 air carrier operations and 75,195 general aviation operations.

At the peak in 2007, total aircraft operations at the Airport hit 123,521, but with 71,949 air carrier operations and 51,572 general aviation operations.  This illustrates that, while passenger numbers have increased, air carrier operations are significantly less in 2018 than in 2007.

How can the Airport see passenger growth with less commercial air activity?

Airlines control what type of aircraft they use.  Over the course of the last decade, Hollywood Burbank Airport has seen airlines shift toward newer aircraft that are cleaner, quieter, and have more seating capacity.