Ports Toronto reports zero noise violations in 2015

PortsToronto, the owner and operator of Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport (the Island airport), released the airport’s 2015 annual Noise Management Report, a compilation of all noise data submitted to the airport’s Noise Management Office over the course of the year. Overall complaints decreased by six per cent, from 410 complaints in 2014 to 386 complaints in 2015 – following on the heels of a 20 per cent reduction in complaints the year prior – as PortsToronto continued to work in concert with the public and the airport’s air carriers to develop enhanced programs, procedures and infrastructure aimed at mitigating the airport’s noise impact on the surrounding community.

Last year, complaints related to the ferry and mainland operations declined by a significant 60 per cent, from 67 complaints in 2014 down to 26 complaints, largely due to the installation of engine mufflers aboard the airport’s ferry and improved vehicle flow with the opening of the Pedestrian Tunnel. The 2015 noise report also confirmed – for the second year in a row – zero violations of Billy Bishop Airport’s strict nighttime curfew, which ensures only medical evacuations and emergency flights are allowed to depart or land at the airport between 11:00 p.m. and 6:45 a.m.

In 2015, Billy Bishop Airport’s Noise Management Office implemented Vortex – a customizable tracking and logging software platform designed specifically for the needs of an airport environment – greatly enhancing how noise complaints are tracked, documented and responded to. Last year, more than 99 per cent of the complaints received by the noise office were responded to within the five-day window that the airport adheres to as part of PortsToronto’s commitment to the community.

“As a part of Toronto’s thriving mixed-use waterfront, Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport works with the community to identify and implement solutions that enhance our noise mitigation efforts,” said Gene Cabral, Executive Vice President of PortsToronto and Billy Bishop Toronto City Airport. “Last year, we were proud to have reached significant noise-reduction milestones, including the opening of the airport’s new pedestrian tunnel, installation of engine mufflers aboard our airport’s ferry and introduction of Vortex to our noise management office. This year, we will once again continue to focus on further reducing the impact of our airport’s noise on the community in a number of important ways including construction of a Ground Run-up Enclosure (GRE).”

PortsToronto’s future plans to reduce and mitigate the airport’s noise impact include:

  • Working with the City of Toronto on the construction of an acoustically and aerodynamically designed Ground Run-up Enclosure (GRE) that will significantly dampen noise associated with engine testing at the airport;
  • Upgrading the airport’s two Noise Monitor Terminals (NMTs) located at the  Toronto Fire Services island fire hall and the Marine Unit on Queens Quay, in addition we will be adding a third NMT on the Mainland Ferry Terminal; and,
  • Continuing to offer free community access to Webtrak, an Internet-based software service that enables anyone with a computer, smartphone or tablet to gather information on an aircraft they hear flying overhead.

As reported last month, with more than 90 percent of airport passengers choosing to use Billy Bishop Airport’s new pedestrian tunnel, surges in traffic demand at the airport’s mainland terminal and along Eireann Quay have also been reduced significantly. Further, the recent launch of an enhanced free airport shuttle service that drops-offs/picks-up passengers outside the mainland pavilion provides travellers with convenient, reliable transport to the airport that has reduced car traffic and related noise. In addition, redesigned taxi and parking areas and additional bike racks on both the island and the mainland side of the airport have been installed to encourage non-vehicular access to the airport to further mitigate the airport’s noise impact.

To learn more about PortsToronto’s Noise Management Program, visit http://www.portstoronto.com/Airport/Noise-Management/Noise-Management.aspx.