Soundscape management is a priority for ADM Aéroports de Montréal. It aims to mitigate the noise impacts of air operations and to maintain a harmonious cohabitation with neighbouring communities. In 2019, ADM drew up an action plan to optimize soundscape management. ADM hired Helios, a firm with expertise in this area, to identify and analyze best practices at 30 comparable international airports.
The action plan was part of an online public consultation to collect comments from citizens of YUL Montréal-Trudeau's neighbouring communities regarding the plan.
Preliminary results, that were presented to the Soundscape Advisory Committee, are now available. Final results will be published once the analysis is completed.
THE ACTION PLAN
The 2019-2023 Soundscape Management Action Plan is composed of some 20 actions in eight categories:
- Complaints Management;
- Nighttime Operations;
- Encouragement for the Use of Quieter Aircraft;
- Noise Abatement Procedures (landing and takeoff);
- Noise Measurement and Soundscape Reports;
- Land Planning;
- Relationships with Neighbouring Communities;
- Preferred Runways System.
1. COMPLAINTS MANAGEMENT
Soundscape management around airports is governed in Canada by the Aeronautics Act and the Canadian Aviation Regulations. Transport Canada is the agency responsible for ensuring compliance with the rules for controlling and mitigating noise generated by air traffic and has the power to impose sanctions on pilots and carriers who contravene these rules.
Under its lease with Transport Canada, ADM is responsible for handling noise complaints, among others.
1.1 Establish a Commitment for complaints management
The Commitment to managing soundscape-related complaints explains the operating procedures in place, the handling of complaints, the analyses, and the follow-ups that may result. The Commitment - Management of Soundscape Complaints is available online.
1.2 Implement a new methodology for analysing complaints
Facilitate the process for filing and processing complaints by putting online WebTrack, a tool that displays flight data information, with a ten minutes delay. It makes it easy for citizens to track aircraft and submit a complaint.
2. NIGHTTIME OPERATIONS
YUL Montréal-Trudeau is open 24 hours a day for turboprops and jets weighing less than 45,000 kilograms. For jets over 45,000 kilograms, normal operating hours are from 7 a.m. to midnight for takeoffs and from 7 a.m. to 1 a.m. for landings. However, ADM can grant exemptions for medical emergencies, delays outside the carrier’s control, adverse weather conditions, and for certain scheduled flights. These are three (3) scheduled flights to Toronto and Miami that provide access to connecting flights to other destinations and, during the winter season, flights that operate a double rotation to sun destinations.
A strict internal policy is applied in this regard. Exemptions are conditional on the application of existing noise reduction measures.
ADM has no intention of increasing the number of night flights. On the contrary, our goal is to reduce the number of flights during restricted operating hours.
ADM, jointly with the air carriers, is currently working on a plan to reduce night flights during restricted periods.
3. QUIETER FLEETS
ADM wants to encourage airlines to use the quietest aircraft to operate at YUL Montréal-Trudeau.
3.1 Promote the use of quieter aircraft
Target the poorest-performing aircraft in the soundscape and encourage airlines to use quieter aircraft. Tighten usage restrictions, especially at night.
3.2 Implement a Fly Quiet Program
Compare airline performance regarding noise disturbance management and recognize improvements made. Publish a comparison chart online.
4. NOISE ABATEMENT PROCEDURES
Air carriers and pilots are required to comply with noise abatement procedures in effect at YUL Montréal-Trudeau airport in order to reduce noise generated by air traffic.
4.1 Identify best practices
Identify and analyze best soundscape management practices at 30 international airports.
4.2 Form a technical working group
Bringing NAV Canada and airlines together to implement best practices in soundscape management.
4.3 Implement a local code of practices for pilots
Review and implement a new local code of practice for pilots to reduce the impact of noise on communities during arrivals, departures and ground movements.
4.4 Evaluate, optimize and monitor the use of existing procedures
Promote and monitor compliance with noise reduction procedures.
4.5 Develop and implement new procedures
Establish new noise reduction procedures. Determine approach and takeoff procedures with NAV Canada and airline partners to reduce aircraft noise.
5. PREFERRED RUNWAYS
Although the number of aircraft movements has remained relatively stable over the past 15 years, ADM is committed to reducing the impact of aircraft noise to maintain a harmonious cohabitation with neighbouring communities. One of the solutions being considered is to look at landing and takeoff patterns to reduce the impact of noise on communities.
5.1 Assess the possibility of establishing a runway alternation system
In conjunction with NAV Canada, explore options for establishing a runway alternation system.
5.2 Ensure better distribution of air traffic on parallel runways
Together with NAV Canada, study the impacts of better distributing aircraft movements on the two parallel runways.
6. NOISE MEASUREMENTS AND REPORTS
ADM aims to be the primary source of reliable and credible information on the soundscape at YUL. ADM intends to communicate its noise measurement and complaints management data to the public on a regular basis.
6.1 Publish reports and indicators on the soundscape
Publication and posting online reports and indicators about the soundscape associated with aviation activities on a regular basis.
6.2 Noise measurement system
Noise levels at noise measurement stations are posted on WebTrak. The LAMax value is displayed. Should another value be added?
7. LAND USE
ADM wants to position itself as one of the stakeholders in the development around YUL Montréal-Trudeau. In constant contact with municipalities and boroughs, ADM informs local authorities, landowners, developers and the general public about airport activities and soundscape-related issues. ADM is also discussing with municipalities and boroughs what can be done to manage the soundscape.
7.1 Support the City of Montréal’s implementation of a noise observatory
ADM is committed to participating in and supporting the implementation of a noise observatory initiated by the City of Montréal.
7.2 Track real estate developments around the airport, assess the impact, and make recommendations in collaboration with the cities and boroughs
ADM wants to implement a system for tracking real estate development around YUL Montréal-Trudeau and provide all relevant information to municipalities as part of their development projects.
7.3 Raise awareness among real estate developers and buyers in collaboration with the cities and boroughs
ADM will provide real estate developers and buyers with all relevant information related to aviation activities at YUL Montréal-Trudeau.
ADM wants to be an active partner in its relationship with neighbouring communities. It is proposing various measures to ensure it listens to citizens and stakeholders and provides them with all the information related to soundscape management.
8.1 Consult cities and boroughs in the paths of runways about the action plan
Conduct an information tour with cities and boroughs in the paths of runways to present the 2019-2023 Action Plan on Soundscape Management and gather the concerns and comments of elected officials.
8.2 Publicizing the work of the Soundscape Advisory Committee
Post online the results of work being done by the Soundscape Advisory Committee.
8.3 Composition of the committee
Assess the representation on the Soundscape Advisory Committee.
8.4 Set up a good neighbour committee with citizens
Create and implement a good neighbour committee with the attendance of citizens.