Airport will pay for insulation against noise

JOHN EDENS
Last updated 09:26 26/02/2014

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Queenstown Airport will offer Frankton residents a $2 million suite of home improvement packages to reduce aircraft noise in their homes.

The airport announced stage-one plans yesterday to help more than 150 homeowners and offered to pay 100 per cent of costs for glazing, ventilation and other measures for 10 properties and 75 per cent of costs for 144 properties in the noise zones.

The area immediately under the noise zones where the airport proposes mitigation includes much of McBride St and Lake Ave.

"The reality is if you're outside it's very noisy and if you're inside with everything closed it's definitely quieter but the reality is it's about 10 seconds where you can't hear the TV," airport liaison committee member and Frankton Residents Association chairman Scott Freeman said.

Another McBride St resident said the noise, at times, was unbelievable.

"I would be out of here in a flash but I love my house. I've never thought about selling, I love my house but I hate what this town is doing to the area. If they want progress they have to look at relocating the airport."

Three noise zones, which are subject to incremental change, have been designated to cater for projected airport growth to 2037.

Queenstown Airport chief executive Scott Paterson said homeowners would receive information packs this week. The next step was a procurement exercise for the works and the implementation of the first 150-property phase within two years.

The expected $2m cost covered the first five years of mitigation, he said. Properties outside the first two zones but within the outer boundary do not get help - yet - because existing the building code covers aircraft noise.

"We will be focusing on 150 homeowners to provide noise mitigation packages over the next two years. Ten homeowners [will be offered] full acoustic insulation, 140 homes 75 per cent of costs.

"Our plan will assist those closest to the airport to install appropriate measures to reduce aircraft noise as if it was already at our forecast 2037 levels."

Noise modelling by the airport covers the first 150 homes until 2015 and the number of properties eligible for help is expected to increase to an estimated 380 homes by 2037.

Financial help will be offered incrementally as the airport grows and the noise boundaries shift.

Mr Paterson said he expected procurement to be complete by June and offers made to residents by the end of August before the start of a two-year work programme around spring.

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