What is a 14 CFR Part 150 Study?

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) issued Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 150, Airport Noise Compatibility Planning, in January 1985. 14 CFR Part 150 provides airport operators with a formal process for addressing airport noise and noncompatible land uses. A “noncompatible land use” is a land use exposed to aircraft noise in excess of the thresholds established in 14 CFR Part 150. Part 150 studies are voluntary; typically prepared by airports interested in improving compatibility with local communities. Part 150 studies have two elements:

  1. Noise Exposure Map (NEM) Report – Shows existing and future aircraft sound exposure levels.
  2. Noise Compatibility Program (NCP) – Recommends measures to address aircraft noise. FAA-approved measures can be eligible for federal funding.

Why is Broward County preparing a Part 150 Study for Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL)?

Airport operations have changed since the last Part 150 Study Update; in particular, Runway 10R/28L has been expanded to serve larger aircraft. These changes warrant updates to the airport noise maps and noise compatibility program.

Has FLL prepared a Part 150 Study in the past?

Broward County has a long history of addressing noise concerns from aircraft operations at FLL. This is the third Part 150 Study Update. The Broward County Aviation Department (BCAD) conducted the first Part 150 Study in 1987. BCAD then conducted an Update in 1994. BCAD began another Update in 2005, but suspended the process due to the Runway 10R/28L Environmental Impact Statement (EIS).

What will the FLL Part 150 Study produce?

The FLL Part 150 Study Noise Exposure Map (NEM) Report will show existing (year 2017) and future (2022) aircraft sound exposure levels. The Report will also explain how these levels were determined. The FAA then reviews and accepts NEMs, in accordance with the regulations.

After the FLL NEMs are completed, the Noise Compatibility Program (NCP) process will begin. An NCP includes measures for addressing noncompatible land uses. Measures may involve sound insulation, zoning, changes in aircraft operations, and other topics. The FAA must review each measure in the NCP. Measures approved by the FAA may be eligible for federal funding.

How is noise monitoring data used?

BCAD operates an aircraft noise and operations monitoring system for FLL. However, 14 CFR Part 150 requires the use of a computer model to determine noise exposure in Part 150 studies. This allows calculation of noise exposure at numerous points around the airport. It also allows prediction of future exposure levels based on expected changes in aircraft activity.

How is noise exposure quantified, and what is DNL?

“DNL” stands for Day-Night Average Sound Level. DNL is an average of sound levels that occur in a 24 hour period, expressed in decibels (dB). Sound events that happen between 10 P.M. and 7 A.M. receive an additional weight of 10 dB. The additional 10 db weight means that every nighttime sound event is counted the same as 10 daytime events. This extra weight represents the greater annoyance that nighttime sounds typically cause for most people.

When calculating aircraft sound exposure, the model uses the average number of operations in a 24-hour period based on one year of aircraft operations data. Then the sound levels for these operations are averaged, with the 10 dB weight for nighttime operations, to calculate DNL values. 14 CFR Part 150 requires the use of DNL for Part 150 studies.

How are sound levels and exposure determined?

The FAA’s Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT) is a computer model that calculates aircraft sound levels. AEDT uses data on flight paths, aircraft types, numbers of operations, and other factors. To determine sound exposure for this Part 150 Study, AEDT will calculate DNL values for the years 2017 and 2022.

What is a noncompatible land use?

A noncompatible land use means that the sound exposure is normally not compatible because the DNL is above the levels identified in Part 150, Appendix A, Table 1. The thresholds for land use compatibility vary depending on the use of the land. For example, the threshold for residential land use is DNL 65; but the threshold is DNL 70 for commercial land use (offices, business and professional buildings).

How long will the FLL Part 150 Study take to complete?

The FLL Part 150 Study is expected to take approximately three years. This includes the time needed to gather data, conduct public outreach, and allow for FAA review. Broward County and its Consultants will take the time needed to create NEMs and an NCP that comply with 14 CFR Part 150.

How does the FLL Part 150 study relate to the current Noise Mitigation Program?

The EIS Noise Mitigation Program is a completely separate program. This Program addresses impacts identified during the EIS for the Runway 9R/27L (now Runway 10R/28L) expansion. The Program is underway, and information is available here. Any home that receives sound insulation in the EIS Noise Mitigation Program cannot receive further mitigation through the FLL Part 150 Study process.

Who provides input into the FLL Part 150 Study?

BCAD, FAA, local governments, pilots, air traffic controllers, and citizens will provide input into the FLL Part 150 Study. Throughout this Study, BCAD will host workshops and public meetings/hearings to share and gather information. BCAD encourages the public to participate.

What are the roles in the FLL Part 150 Study?

Airport AdministrationBCAD is the Part 150 Study Sponsor. BCAD is responsible for identifying potential ways to reduce aircraft effects on local communities. Providing sound insulation and flight path changes are examples of these measures, which must provide a noise benefit for noncompatible land uses. No measure can discriminate among aircraft operators, create an unsafe situation, hinder air navigation, or interfere with commerce. The FAA must approve any changes in aircraft operations.

Federal Aviation AdministrationThe FAA’s primary role is to ensure safe and efficient use of the National Airspace System. FAA Air Traffic Control is responsible for aircraft movement on the airfield and in the air. The FAA alone has the authority to change aircraft operations. Any operational changes recommended by BCAD must be consistent with air safety and all legal requirements. The FAA must approve any change(s) resulting from a Part 150 Study.

Local GovernmentsLocal governments provide land use planning, zoning, and housing guidelines and can limit land uses around airports to those compatible with airport operations.

PilotsIn both commercial and general aviation, the pilot is responsible for the safe operation of the aircraft. Although some airlines have procedures to reduce noise, and Air Traffic Control assigns the flight path and altitude, the pilot maintains final authority due to safety. In general, the pilot decides whether to follow procedures that reduce noise.

Residents and Prospective ResidentsThe residents near an airport should provide input about noise concerns. Residents should also understand actions that can (and cannot) be taken to reduce aircraft noise effects. Future residents should familiarize themselves with noise and flight path information.

How can I get involved?

14 CFR Part 150 encourages public and agency participation. There will be several public workshops during the Part 150 Study process. The first public workshop will introduce the FLL Part 150 Study process. BCAD will update FLL’s Part 150 Study website with meeting information and newsletters as the Study moves forward.

Please submit comments specific to the FLL Part 150 Study through this link, in person at the public workshops, or by mail to:

Aviation Department
C/O FLL Part 150 Study
320 Terminal Drive, Suite 200
Fort Lauderdale, FL 33315

Please focus your comments on the FLL Part 150 Study content or process. Aircraft event complaints should be sent through the Noise Complaint Hotline (see below), not to the Part 150 Study Team.

How do I submit noise complaints?

FLL is interested in hearing your aircraft noise concerns. To file an aircraft noise complaint, call the Noise Comment Hotline at 1-866-822-7910 or submit your comment online.