FAA Sound Insulation Policy Research

The FAA is presently undertaking a nationwide, comprehensive survey of the dose-response relationship between aircraft noise levels and community annoyance. In anticipation that the results might cause the FAA to re-examine and possibly modify its current approach and policies with respect to aircraft noise impact assessment and mitigation (e.g., land-use compatibility policies, residential sound insulation programs), the FAA contracted with HMMH to investigate the efficacy of sound insulation practices, treatments, and techniques.

The research is designed to ascertain the efficacy of current sound insulation techniques when applied to potentially different policy decisions about land use compatibility guidelines expressed as outdoor annual average DNL values, and interior noise exposure goals expressed as interior annual average DNL. HMMH staff characterized and quantified efficacy by estimating the total costs and the numbers of homes anticipated to benefit from the application of various policy choices. Having this decision-support information prepared concurrently with the completion of the National Noise and Annoyance Survey enables the FAA to shorten planning, policy, and programming cycles in the event that the results from the survey warrant expeditious decision making by policymakers.

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