FAA Quietly Looking at Airport Homes


hangarhomeThe reason the FAA now prohibits hangar homes next to publicly funded airports is based on noise considerations, but no data exists to back that position, according to ThroughTheFence.org (TTE) which seeks to “stop the FAA insanity.” Airports all over the U.S. have so-called “through-the-fence” agreements with adjacent landowners that allows them to taxi their aircraft from their homes to the airport. But the FAA is now officially discouraging the practice as set forth in the most recent Airport Compliance Manual dated Sept. 30, 2009. TTE says the FAA’s noise concerns are based on anecdotal information and that the FAA acted without seeking public comment or input on the topic. TTE believes that one benefit the FAA is removing by prohibiting hangar homes near airports the FAA is the potential security benefits of placing on airport property people with a vested interest in that property. The group put FAA administrator, Randy Babbitt, on the spot at the AOPA Summit.

When asked about the issue, Babbitt responded that the FAA is waiting to hear from the alphabet groups, according to TTE. Until then, what TTE calls a “stealth” and “wholesale directive” that may be better evaluated on a case by case basis remains in place.

The agency recently released FAA Order 5130.6B, known as the Airport Compliance Manual, which replaces the 1989 edition. With the new updates, the manual, which provides FAA officials and airport sponsors with guidance on how to comply with federal grant assurances and analyze potential assurance violations, totals nearly 700 pages. That’s up from slightly more than 62 in the 1989 version.

The following was sent to us anonymously via the web site……..Editor

Airport homes in trouble faa wants to close ’em out

Mr. Blue,

The exhibit you asked about (FAA DD Exhibit 1, Item 3) is actually the complaint filed by the complainant in that case. It includes nearly 300 pages in exhibits. I am unable to provide you with a link to that document. You might be able to access it through the DOT docket management system under FAA Docket No. 16-06-06 Director’s Determination. I doubt that the complaint would be useful to you, however, since the issue of a residential airpark adjacent to the airport was raised by the FAA based on other information contained in the administrative record rather than raised directly by the complainant in that case. (The complainant’s allegation involved allowing some on-airport tenants to use their hangars as residences while denying others the same privilege.)

The FAA has determined that residential development on or adjacent to airports is inconsistent with 49 United States Code (U.S.C.) 47107(a)(10) and the associated federal grant assurance 21, Compatible Land Use. Noise is a substantial issue, but not the only issue. Your assertion that most people who live in hangar homes like airport noise has not been borne out by our experience. People who live in residential hangars like to fly … they don’t necessarily like the noise. They complain just like everyone else when the noise is from an aircraft that isn’t theirs. In addition, when the residential hangar is sold or bequeathed to someone who is not a pilot, the allure of living right next to a runway is not so great. FAA has determined residential airparks adjacent to airports are an incompatible land use. Allowing incompatible land use in proximity of a federally obligated airport can create a number of undesirable conditions, including: noise complaints, diminished security, diminished safety, efforts by residential neighbors to restrain the growth of the airport or impose restrictions, unfair competition with on-airport business operators, and wild life issues.

You should also know the FAA actively discourages airport sponsors from entering into through-the-fence agreements, especially if they involve residential or commercial development.

While you are welcome to discuss your particular issue with the local Airports District Office, I must advise you that there is no compromise when it comes to federally funded airports. Residential airparks are incompatible land use, and through-the-fence arrangements of any kind are strongly discouraged. Your best option might be to construct your own private airstrip without federal funding.

Katherine Baxter
FAA Airport Compliance and Field Operations Division
(202) 267-9024


KSAC is one of the airport communites that are on the hit list. Fullertown has been placed on notice that the use of the homes with hangars is INCOMPATABLE.. and thus may not get API funds… holding them for ransom and conditions…OR ELSE. I think its called extortion… but either way its crap.


More on this potential showdown issue –

Through-the-Fence Again Emerges as an Issue

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