Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) is extending the duration of its noise mitigation program, one of the most unique and comprehensive in the United States.
The next phase of MSP’s Noise Mitigation Program will extend eight years, from 2025-2032, providing noise reducing modifications to program-eligible houses and apartments. Since the first phase of the program began in 1992, the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC), which operates MSP, has invested more than $510 million mitigating noise in 15,000 single-family homes and multi-family units in neighborhoods near the airport.
“The MAC has long been an industry leader in working with community stakeholders and homeowners to reduce interior aircraft noise in the most impacted homes around Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport,” said Brian Ryks, CEO of the MAC. “This program extends authorization for the MAC to assist homeowners based on federal standards and other program criteria.”
The noise mitigation program extension follows a series of approvals by the MAC Board, as well as entities at the local and federal level, with the final sign-off by the Hennepin County District Court as an amendment to an original agreement (2007 Consent Decree) between the MAC; the cities of Richfield, Minneapolis and Eagan; and the Minneapolis Public Housing Authority. The MAC also has continued support from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) for the program and this latest extension.
“Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport (MSP) has a long history of quantifying and mitigating noise impacts in a manner responsive to concerns raised by communities around the airport,” said Metropolitan Airports Commission Chair Rick King. “I want to thank our commissioners for their proactive support to invest in the quality of life for our region by committing resources for another eight years to help residents and homeowners near the airport.”
The MAC also gained unanimous support for the noise mitigation program extension from the MSP Noise Oversight Committee (NOC), which is made up of community representatives and aviation industry representatives that provide policy recommendations to the MAC.
“The mitigation program around MSP has features that make it unique from programs across the nation and which reflect local values and expectations,” said former NOC member and Minneapolis City Council Vice-President Linea Palmisano. “There is value in preserving these features, and we were happy to work with MAC and neighboring cities to continue this program.”
The current phase of the MSP Noise Mitigation Program (2017-2024) established mitigation eligibility based on annual noise contour assessments of actual MSP aircraft activity – a formula that will continue through 2032. To be eligible for noise mitigation, a home would need to be located for three consecutive years in a higher aircraft noise (60-64 DNL Contour) area than previous programs.
The geographic area that marks mitigation eligibility around MSP (60 dB DNL contour) has been shrinking for four years and is considerably smaller than in 2007, in part because airlines have invested in newer aircraft that utilize noise reduction technology. The COVID-19 pandemic also reduced aircraft operations at MSP in 2020 and 2021, compared to previous years.
Residents and stakeholders can get the latest MSP Noise Mitigation Program information at metroairports.org/community-connection/aircraft-noise.