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  Aviation & John Wayne Airport
Update- All things Aviation:

​If you’d like additional information, please contact Newport Beach City Manager
Dave Kiff at

City Newsletter and the Continuing Effort to Keep Residents Informed

Recently the City distributed to all of residents of the City a comprehensive Newsletter to inform the residents about the history of the airport issue; the role of City; the County and FAA as well as what the City is doing in trying to address the issues related to the impacts of the airport on the community. You should have received the Newsletter in the mail but if you failed for some reason to have received the Newsletter, you may access it on the City’s website.


August 1, 2018

John Wayne Airport Newsletter: Please click this link for a very good update and recap of the action taken by City to reduce noise and pollution at JWA.

John Wayne Airport Impacts on City of Newport Beach residents

June, 2018

Please click links below to see Tom Edwards’ monthly update for May (and a little of June 2018) and the completion of HMMH’s Part 1, Phase II Scope of Work:

Monthly Update – May 2018

HMMH’s Side-by-Side and Other Noise Monitoring near JWA – December 2017 and January 2018

May, 2018 

Click for Report

March, 2018

The Newport Beach City Manager has announced settlement of the City Lawsuit Against FAA over the environmental document (Environmental Assessment or “EA”) associated with NextGen’s implementation at JWA

The settlement agreement with the FAA will affect Departure Paths as follows:

1. Prohibits the use of the EA to modify existing or to design future flight paths.
2. Emphasizes the importance of closely following the traditional historic flight paths along the Upper Bay.
3. Ensures that the Metroplex will not preempt or jeopardize the continued successful operation of the 1985 JWA Settlement Agreement and its many protections.
4. Implements and tests a new “Required Navigational Performance (RNP)” departure procedure for the Upper Bay consisting of two turns, not just one. (The STAYY Plan)
5. Departures will attempt to remain within the natural contours of the Upper Bay and curve as the bay curves, avoiding as many residential areas as possible.​

See complete report HERE

January 10, 2018

At last night's City Council meeting, it was announced that the City of Newport Beach (City) reached a tentative agreement with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to further restrict departure paths at John Wayne Airport (JWA). 

The FAA agreed that the NextGen flight paths will stay between the existing noise monitors and will design and study one of the nation's first precision-based curved departure procedures for JWA. This procedure, planned for implementation in the coming weeks, would in theory allow planes to follow the curves of the Upper Newport Bay, therefore avoiding as many residential areas as possible.

The FAA further agreed to ensure all future changes to flight paths will be fully analyzed anew under the National Environmental Policy Act. Finally, additional protections were secured against excessive "early offshore turns" that, if allowed, would bring certain departures closer to Corona del Mar and Newport Coast.

The City Council, City Manager and City Attorney believe the settlement agreement resulted in an outcome that is better than expected. 

You can read the City's press release online at

October, 2017

Click for details: Newport Beach John Wayne Airport Report

​In March 2017, the FAA implemented a new program, “SoCal Metroplex” that changed the John Wayne Airport (JWA) departure path to allow planes to begin left-hand turns shortly after leaving the runway, putting them squarely over the east side of the Upper Newport Bay. This substantially increased takeoff noise over Eastbluff’s homes, schools, and facilities.

In its environmental assessment of SoCal Metroplex, the FAA stated that the changes would cause “no significant impacts” to surrounding areas. The FAA justifies this change by saying this saves the airlines money on fuel. The City of Newport Beach has filed a legal challenge to the FAA's finding, and is negotiating with the FAA to develop a departure path that would keep planes over the water, not our homes.

The Board of Directors has sent a letter to the City indicating our displeasure with these changes which directed the airlines to turn left (east) sooner. The takeoff noise has increased to a debilitating level and resulted in more jet fuel pollution over Eastbluff and a negative impact to our residents’ health, safety and peace of mind. We believe the fair and safest approach for all of Newport Beach is for the airlines to take off straight out for a longer distance over the middle of the Back Bay as they did prior to March, 2017.

Members are encouraged to write to the City with support of the City's legal action to show the change has had a substantial negative impact on our homes and to support changing the takeoff path back to middle of the Back Bay.

City of Newport Beach
 David Kiff, City Manager
One Civic Center Drive, Newport Beach, CA 92660

​July, 2017

Click for Full report


  •  Rick Francis Selected as New Assistant Airport Director
  • Metroplex Update
  • John Wayne Airport Releases Their Annual Report 
  • Proposal to Privatize the Air Traffic Control System
  • Airports in the Region 
  • First Quarter Noise Report- JWA  

May, 2017

If you’d like additional information, please contact Newport Beach City Manager Dave Kiff at .

City and County Continue to Monitor Metroplex

 The City and County continue to monitor Metroplex. Accordingly an arbitrary flight, United Airlines Flight 1989 was chosen for pre and post implementation of Metroplex. The following information is for two separate days, February 19, 2017, pre-Metroplex and then March 4, 2017, postMetroplex.

CLICK HERE for full report & graphics.

You will see the individual track of the flight pre and post Metroplex; the noise readings at each noise monitor and the altitude of the plane closest to approach at each noise monitor. The depictions have been set forth in larger than normal slides, so that you can get a decent view of the same.


This summer the VOLANS flight tracking system at the airport, which you can
access at anytime, will be updated. The updates will include a mobile application for your
phone so you can track flights at the airport.

JWA- April 2017
 Airline passenger traffic at John Wayne Airport decreased in April 2017 as
compared with April 2016. In April 2017, the Airport served 851,169 passengers, a
decrease of 1.2% when compared with the April 2016 passenger traffic count of
861,164. Commercial aircraft operations decreased 1.8% and commuter aircraft
operations decreased 55.0% when compared with April 2016 levels.
 In April 2017 the Average Daily Departures (ADDs) were 121.37 vs. 124.65
for April of 2016. 

January 13, 2017
FAA Conducting Community Outreach Workshops

Community members are invited to participate in the Federal Aviation Administration's outreach workshops about the new flight paths (known as NextGen) for John Wayne Airport. There are two options for you to either log in for a webinar on Thursday, January 19 from 6 p.m. to 7:15 pm. or attend a public workshop on Wednesday, February 1 from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the OASIS Senior Center. Additional information is posted on the City's website HERE

October 25, 2016
City of Newport Beach Files Suit against FAA

On Tuesday, October 25, the Newport Beach City Council authorized the filing of a lawsuit against the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) associated with the FAA’s NextGen efforts for the Southern California MetroPlex area, including John Wayne Airport (JWA). The complaint, filed on behalf of the City of Newport Beach in federal court on October 27, lists the City’s concerns with the FAA’s finding of no significant environmental impact related to the FAA’s implementation of three key departure procedures from JWA. 

The City is seeking more information about the potential impacts of the changes and would like a better understanding of how the FAA's Environmental Assessment could be used to design departures in the future. More details and a link to a copy of the City's filing can be found HERE

LA Times article HERE

July 25, 2016, 4 pm
Aviation Committee meeting Civic Center Community Room

If you're tired of being hammered with noise and exhaust from planes departing JWA, consider attending this Newport Beach Aviation Committee meeting. Discussion should include the new flight path the city is proposing to the FAA. 

Don't forget to report all flights that bother you to the JWA Access and Noise office, at 949-252-5185 and/or By not complaining, we are saying we're OK with new altitudes (hundreds of feet lower) and noise levels. Strong reaction from the community now could be important later on.

Update by Tom Meng
December 4, 2015

If you are tired of the dirt and noise from John Wayne Airport, disturbed by the sound of planes veering off course and flying over our neighborhoods and are dubious that the noise abatement rules are being properly enforced, here's an action you can take.

Report these instances whenever they happen. Note the date and time and call the John Wayne Airport Noise office at 949-252-5185 and follow up with an e-mail to You can also call the FAA Flight Standards District Office at 562-420-1755 (press "0" for the Operations Officer on Duty). There IS something we can do.

JWA's new flight tracking system "VOLANS", enables members of the community to log on to and track the flight data from the convenience of their home.

Report on City of Newport Beach
Council/citizen Aviation Committee Meeting

The Council/Citizens Aviation Committee met on December 14, 2015. The important issues affecting Eastbluff are listed below:

1.The Council/Citizen Aviation Committee is recommending that the City Council approve a two turn departure plan called (HAYLO,FINNZ – GE/Naverus. This plan will bring the departing airlines further to the east (closer to Eastbluff) as you can see on the yellow line shown on the attached map.

The Newport Beach Aviation Committee has recommended that the Newport Beach City Council adopt the above plan as follows:

1.Advocate for a different departure pattern for northerly departures (50% of all departures). This pattern would have two turns in the Upper Newport Bay, more closely aligning with the contours of the Upper Bay and crossing the Newport Dunes at a slightly different angle and therefore cross Balboa Island near Agate versus Ruby. No further turns than these two over land. Staff noted that the FAA is “intrigued” with this RNP-style of departure (“required navigational performance”) for JWA but that most experts think that such a departure is 5-10 years away given plane technologies. (No impacts to neighboring cities).

2.Consider a two-phase study regarding departure altitudes. The 2007-2008 ARTS study recommended doing this sometime in the future. Phase I would examine altitudes today and compare them with altitudes 5 and 10 years ago. If planes are significantly lower because of planes that are overall quieter, and can therefore pass the Noise Monitoring Stations without triggering the top values, then a Phase II might occur. Phase II would study how a new (but voluntary) departure path that took many departures up “higher sooner” would impact noise and emissions across the community. Staff was directed to see if neighboring cities downstream would be interested in assisting with this study (not Phase I but Phase II if Phase II is needed). Staff noted that this departure pattern, if feasible, may have significant odds against FAA approval.

3.Support the US EPA’s recent rulemaking to more thoroughly regulate emissions from commercial aircraft.

As stated above if approved by City of Newport Council and the Airport/FAA departing planes will come closer to Eastbluff.

There was a very large group of people from the west side of the bay demanding that departing airlines not fly over their area. Tom Meng was the only person attending from the east side of the bay.

Please note the attached chart.  The yellow line is the recommended two turn departure.

August 12, 2015

This letter was sent to the FAA from the Eastbluff Homeowners Community Association on August 12, 2015

HOA Letter to FAA regarding aviation plan

Read more: Daily Pilot: Airlines Over More of OC?

Report on City of Newport Beach Council/citizen Aviation Committee Meeting
August 6, 2015

Important issues on the agenda were:

(a) Noise Monitoring

(b) NextGen – (The FAA’s plan for the flight path out of John Wayne Airport)

The noise Monitoring system has been up dated with new equipment. The new system was adjusted to provide the same and equal results to the old equipment. (Unimportant)

The big issue was item “B” on the NextGen that determines where the planes will fly. The current procedure is to fly out over the Back Bay but we all know that this is not happening. The NextGen that is proposed by the FAA is supposed to bring the planes back to flying out over the Back Bay. There was much discussion by members suggesting that the planes be fanned out over the entire city instead thus affecting the residents in the flight path. This will greatly affect Eastbluff residents with the additional noise and pollution with planes flying overhead. Health issues were raised regarding the emissions and soot that come from the planes flying overhead.

I have attached the agenda and the hand out from today’s meeting for your review and action.

Aviation Committee Agenda 8-6-15


The City is encouraging Associations to respond by September 8, 2015 either by 

email to: 

or via snail mail to:

SoCal Metroplex EA
Federal Aviation Administration
Western Service Center – Operations Support Group
1601 Lind Avenue SW
Renton, WAS 98057

I believe it is very important for Eastbluff Association to respond because there is a strong, well organized contingent on the west side of the Back Bay advocating to move the planes away from them and Balboa Island. This would result in all or most of the planes going over the homes in Eastbluff.  

The City Manager and Kevin Muldoon have promised to look into the above issues. To ensure that they take action it is important for Eastbluff to respond to this proposal.  

Tom Meng, C.P.M., FMP
(949) 500-4445 

Board Liaison for JWA issues

Tom Meng