We’ve always been quite lucky in Astoria. It’s only a few stops from the hustle and bustle of the city, but still enjoys the quietness that comes with an out of city neighborhood. But over the past few years, many have voiced their complaints about a certain noise that has been ruining our quite weekends and sleepy nights. Helicopters. Their loud, their constant, and they seem to be flying right on top of us.
In 2012, the FAA began its North Shore Route. The new route many say is the catalyst for the problem, as it passes directly over Astoria through to North East Queens. The altitude of the helicopters are extremely low, and have caused great irritation to the community. What once was a quite spot for New Yorkers, is growing into a helicopter frenzy, with Whitestone among the worst areas.
Many of the helicopters are private and used to carry the wealthy to and from the Hamptons, while the commercial helicopters also prove a huge problem, taking tourists on sightseeing rides almost every day of the year.
The effected communities; Astoria, Whitestone, Glen Cove, North Hempstead and East End have joined together to battle the issue.
A noise complaint site called AirNoiseReport has been created by Tech consultant Daniel Aronoff which to date has had 3475 complaints, along with site Stop the Chop. The sites help those affected by the noise to come together in protest, as currently complaints directly to the FAA are difficult to say the least.
Even though the FAA has authority to regulate air space over the city, politicians are also finally getting involved, in hopes that enough noise from the public, will stop the noise from the skies.
A couple weeks ago, City Council held a hearing where they called for a resolution from the Federal Aviation Administration, according to QNS. A solution to redirect the North Shore Helicopter Route away from north Queens. Councilman Paul Vallone who acts as the resolution’s sponsor hopes that the hearing will be a necessary and successful step in the passage of the resolution.
The call to action is for the FAA to investigate the noise complaints, and reevaluate its data, and eventually reroute the air traffic to an over water route which is available.
The voices have been heard all over. Local forum Astorians has had a fair share of people complaining about the helicopter flight paths, as well as multiple complaints on reddit. It seems that the issue has been on the minds of Astorians for quite a while, and it’s only getting worse, diminishing the quality of life.
*Featured Image Via TimesLedger