The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has announced the release of the Final Re-Evaluation Report for the Proposed Interim Fly Quiet Plan.

The Interim Fly Quiet Runway Rotation Plan was proposed by the O’Hare Noise Compatibility Commission (ONCC), in collaboration with the Chicago Department of Aviation (CDA), in 2017 to provide relief from nighttime noise for the communities around O’Hare International Airport.

According to a statement from the FAA: “The FAA concludes (in the report) that there are no significant new circumstances that require the preparation of a new Environmental Impact Statement and that the 2005 environmental analysis for the O’Hare Modernization Program remains valid. The Interim Fly Quiet increases noise for some residents and decreases it for others, but the impacts would be temporary.”

The final documents are available for review on the FAA web site and at 83 community libraries in Illinois through August 14, 2019.

“The Interim Fly Quiet plan is groundbreaking in the aviation community,” said ONCC Chair and Mount Prospect Mayor Arlene Juracek. “The work of the ONCC, in partnership with the CDA and FAA, is being observed by airports and communities across the country, and even throughout the world. The cooperative effort among the parties involved and the level of community input is unprecedented,” Juracek said.

The Interim Fly Quiet plan is expected to be in place from November 2019 to May 2020 and from September 2020 to January 2021. The plan will be impacted by airfield construction projects, which will result in reverting to the original Fly Quiet program during those periods.

“When the ONCC Fly Quiet Committee first met in 2015, we had a mission to balance nighttime noise and provide predictability for O'Hare communities by recommending a runway rotation program,” said Joe Annunzio, who represents the Village of Niles on the ONCC, and serves as Fly Quiet Committee Chair. “While it is an interim program today, I am confident that with the continued support and guidance of the CDA and the FAA, the Fly Quiet Committee will accomplish a permanent solution to bring nighttime relief in the future.”

ONCC formed an ad hoc Fly Quiet Committee in September 2015 as a result of the Chicago Department of Aviation’s recommendation to modify the existing Fly Quiet Program. Fly Quiet is a voluntary nighttime noise abatement program at O’Hare that is in effect from 10 p.m. to 7 a.m. The committee’s purpose was to review, modify and make recommendations regarding nighttime noise abatement procedures at O’Hare.

The committee has overseen a series of three runway rotation tests, which were conducted in order to find the best solution to balance nighttime noise impacts. The proposed interim plan features an eight-week runway rotation schedule, with six configurations arranged to alternate each week between parallel and diagonal runways, as well as rotating east flow and west flow.

“I am grateful for the work of the Fly Quiet Committee members and their dedication to finding an equitable resolution to this situation, and to the CDA and FAA for their cooperation on this effort,” said ONCC Chair Juracek. “We appreciate the FAA's thorough review and findings and look forward to ultimate implementation of the program."

The ONCC Fly Quiet Committee is now considering options for FQ21 – a new Fly Quiet plan to be in place once the O’Hare Modernization Plan is completed and full build-out is reached.