The San Diego International Airport is conveniently located to many San Diego residents and businesses. Even though the location is convenient it does create some inherent challenges for those who live and work near the Airport.
SAN along with the airlines, the FAA and Air Traffic Control (ATC) strive to balance the needs of the community with those of the passengers of SAN. Even though we do not dictate the flight path (that’s the responsibility of the FAA and ATC) or fly the planes (that’s the airlines), it is our job to act as an intermediary between all parties fostering transparency in airport operations over the communities surrounding the airport.
The following pages are meant to help explain Airport Noise Mitigation's role in these tasks and what we are doing to help reduce noise in the community.
“The Curfew” is a part of the Airport Use Regulations, formally adopted as SDCRAA Code 9.40, Airport Use Regulations. In the simplest of terms, “The Curfew” is the Time of Day Restrictions that limits nighttime aircraft departures.
The following text has been excerpted from the Airport Use Regulations. If you have any questions or concerns regarding these regulations, please contact Airport Noise Mitigation at (619) 400-2789, Monday through Friday 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. During all other times, please call (619) 400-2799.
Additionally, a multiplier may be added to reflect the multiple number of violations during the previous compliance period. After the 3rd (or more) offense, the operating privileges of any operator may be terminated, or limited, on such terms and conditions, and for such period of time, as the Authority Board determines is appropriate.
Learn More about the Curfew Violation Review Panel (CVRP)
What is the California Airport Noise Standards, and what is a Variance?
The California Airport Noise Standards (California Code of Regulations, Title 21, Section 5000 et seq.) “Title 21”. Title 21 provides noise standards governing the operating of an airport within the State. Among many things, Title 21 states that the basis for the acceptable level of aircraft noise for persons living in the vicinity of airports is a CNEL of 65 dB. In addition, Title 21 states that no proprietor of a “noise problem" airport shall operate an airport with a Noise Impact Area (N.I.A.) of 65 dB CNEL unless the operator has applied for and received a Variance from the California Department of Transportation (CALTRANS), Division of Aeronautics (Title 21 Section 5012). SDIA is one of ten California airports subject to the “noise problem airport” requirements. These regulations establish 65 dB CNEL as a N.I.A. within which there shall be no incompatible land uses. SDIA has received 11 such Variances to operate since the late 1970s. As of April 2014, the SDIA N.I.A. contains approximately 6,600 dwelling units and 15,000 persons.
FAR Part 150
14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 150, Airport Noise Compatibility Planning, was issued by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) as a final rule in January 1985. 14 CFR Part 150 sets forth the methodology and procedures to be followed when preparing aircraft noise exposure maps and developing airport /airport environs land use compatibility programs.
14 CFR Part 150 studies typically consist of two primary components: (1) the Noise Exposure Map (NEM) report which contains detailed information regarding existing and 5-year future airport/aircraft noise exposure patterns, and (2) the Noise Compatibility Program (NCP) report which includes descriptions and an evaluation of noise abatement and noise mitigation options/programs applicable to an airport.
The Quarterly Noise Report details the noise activities at the San Diego International Airport. Information includes statistical summaries, aircraft noise measurements, information on airport operations, noise complaint statistics, enforcement actions, reports on the residential sound insulation program and information about the Airport Noise Advisory Committee.
A variance is required by the California Department of Transportation when there are areas surrounding the San Diego International Airport that are impacted by more than 65 dBs of noise. Therefore, in order to maintain operations the San Diego International Airport must have conditions in place in order to reduce noise impacts to those in areas above 65 dBs of noise.
Click here for the current San Diego International Airport’s Variance.
Variance Application Acceptance From Caltrans.