The O’Hare Noise Compatibility Commission (ONCC) is the only inter-governmental agency that is dedicated to reducing aircraft noise in the communities around O’Hare International Airport. It was established in 1996, following an invitation from the City of Chicago to suburban mayors to begin constructive dialogues on aircraft noise issues.
Since its founding, the ONCC's membership has grown tremendously and now includes 36 municipalities, Cook County and 16 school districts near O’Hare. These 53 members are represented by mayors, Chicago aldermen, Cook County and school superintendents at more than 20 public meetings that the ONCC and its committees hold annually.
The Technical Committee identifies and promotes technological advancements that are designed to reduce aircraft noise. The sound insulation committees oversee one of the most aggressive residential noise remediation programs in the nation and the world’s largest school sound insulation program. The total spending on these programs since they began is approximately $550 million.
The Chicago Department of Aviation maintains a toll-free hotline at 1-800-435-9569 and an Aircraft Noise Complaint Form for citizens to report concern about particular aircraft events or aircraft noise levels in general. Tallies of noise complaints appear in the monthly Airport Noise Management System report.
ONCC believes in replacing confrontation with cooperation by bringing together the city of Chicago and suburban communities, the airlines, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), air traffic controllers and airline pilots to reduce the impact of aircraft noise in communities surrounding O’Hare. This approach has produced significant results —decreased aircraft noise and increased spending on sound insulation programs.