Van Nuys Airport Achieves "Zero Noise Impact Area"

Airport Becomes First in Los Angeles World Airports System to Reach Milestone

vnyVan Nuys (VNY) Airport recently reached a milestone by declaring a “zero noise impact area.” Within the current airport noise impact boundary, there are no “incompatible land uses” (single and multi-family homes) that remain unaddressed by the airport’s sound insulation program.

With its designation as a zero noise impact area, the airport no longer falls under the definition of a “Noise Problem Airport” by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors as part of the California Airport Noise Standards (California Code of Regulations, Title 21). It becomes the first of Los Angeles World Airports’ three airports to accomplish this.

The airport achieved compliance with the Airport Noise Standards through a reduction in both the noise impact area and the noise impact boundary. The noise impact area is defined as the area within the noise impact boundary that is composed of incompatible land uses. The VNY noise impact boundary is defined as 65 decibels Community Noise Equivalent Level (CNEL) annual average noise contour, with the CNEL being a measurement of the average sound levels over a 24-hour period (with different weighing factors applied to the evening and nighttime).

“At VNY, our noise management program demonstrates our community response efforts, as well as our continued diligence toward achieving effective noise reduction at the source,” said VNY Airport Manager Jess Romo. “We’re very pleased to achieve a zero noise impact area, but remain committed to moving forward with our efforts to serve as responsible stewards to our Valley neighbors on this important issue.”

The VNY Soundproofing Program, implemented in 1999, served as the key method to convert residential dwellings from incompatible to compatible land uses, thereby reducing the noise impact area.

To reduce the noise impact boundary, VNY established multiple noise abatement policies and procedures.

These include restrictions on certain aircraft departing the airport between 10 p.m. and 7 a.m., prohibition of most additional older (Stage 2) aircraft from being based at VNY, voluntary procedures for quiet jet departure, a program to detect and notify pilots who turn too early after departure and thus fly over adjacent residential areas, and more.

In addition, at the start of 2012, VNY updated its Fly Friendly Program for jet aircraft flying out of the airport. The updated program includes new not-to-excced target noise levels for specific aircraft, based on 10 years of aircraft data, affecting the noisiest 5% of jet departures from VNY. The program also expands the number of aircraft included.

For more information about VNY’s extensive noise management initiatives, visit and click on the Noise Management link. To submit a
noise complaint, use the online form or call             (800) 560-0010