Tuesday, November 15, 2005
Livermore airport will get five noise monitors
Pleasanton will be asked to help pay for solar-powered devices
By Mike White
The Tri-Valley (CA) Herald
LIVERMORE – Airport neighbors worried about loud noises from jets and other planes were relieved this week when the City Council approved installing monitors at five locations. Pilots were disappointed, however, when the council put off action on building new hangars. Nearly 300 people, mostly Tri-Valley residents, are on the waiting list for a hangar at Livermore Municipal Airport.
The council voted unanimously on Monday to seek bids for five solar-powered monitors at an estimated cost of up to $170,000. One of the monitors would be located at the airport, two east of the airport within Livermore and two others in Pleasanton, west of the airport. The city will seek financial help from Pleasanton for the two monitors in that city.
Livermore also anticipates hiring a part-time employee to administer the noise monitoring equipment at an estimated cost of $45,000.
Airport neighbors expressed support for the noise monitors and opposed actions that could bring additional planes to Livermore, including the construction of new large hangars.
Pilots said after the hearing they were disappointed with the council’s action. Jay Cotton, a Livermore resident and an organizer for Coalition for Livermore Airport, said monitors are a waste of time.
“They will show what we already know – that there is not a noise problem at the Livermore airport,” Cotton said.
Nevertheless, there is optimism by some pilots that once the city makes progress on the noise-monitoring issue, they will return to the idea of building new hangars at the airport. There has been no new hangar construction since 1986, despite 208 people on the waiting list for small hangars and 64 hoping for larger hangars.
A report prepared for Monday’s meeting said building 62 smaller hangars would cost $1.8 million and 19 larger ones would run $2.9 million.
The hearing on Monday was the second related to airport noise since February, when the council voted to disband work on the airport master plan update and focus instead on reducing noise.
The master plan had projected an increase in flights of 44 percent over the next 20 years.