Air Force Focusing On Reducing Noise For Neighborhoods Near USAFA

The Air Force is looking for ways to reduce noise for those living near the Air Force Academy.

Congressman Doug Lamborn spoke to the secretary of the Air Force after he says his constituents contacted him regarding the issue. The Peregrine neighborhood directly borders the Academy on its south end, and there are numerous other neighborhoods within a couple of miles of Academy property.

Friday, the congressman sent the following response from the secretary to the newsroom:

"Air Education and Training Command's 306th Flying Training Group (306 FTG) is currently focusing on two initiatives to reduce noise in the affected neighborhoods. The first initiative is to examine the east visual flight rules pattern to see if there are ways to mitigate the noise signature without compromising flight safety. The 306 FTG has completed the flight testing phase of the proposed changes and is currently in the coordination phase. All proposed changes need to be coordinated across multi-functional agencies to include the 10th Air Base Wing Civil Engineer Squadron, Air Education and Training Command, and the Federal Aviation Administration. Unfortunately, initial indications are that these proposed changes will have minimal impact to noise signatures underneath the USAFA flight pattern.

"The second initiative is to reduce the volume of traffic at the USAFA Airfield by exploring options to utilize Bullseye Auxiliary Airfield. Re-opening Bullseye would relieve some of USAFA's pattern volume, and therefore reduce noise in the neighboring communities. We are working on two scenarios to utilize Bullseye; a waiver to operate without dedicated emergency service support, or a partnership to share Bullseye with the U.S. Army providing emergency service support to the airfield. The 306 FTG expects to reach a decision on both initiatives by April 2014.

"I appreciate the responsiveness of the Air Force as we continue to address the concerns of constituents in the impacted area. As we consider next steps, I look forward to the reports that will come from the 306 FTG in April."