Webcast: Working to address airplane noise


Palo Alto Deputy City Manager Michelle Poché Flaherty discusses the topic of worsening airplane noise -- and Palo Alto's response to the problem -- with Weekly journalists.

Watch the webcast here.

Webcasts are posted every Friday afternoon on, as well as on Palo Alto Online's YouTube channel,

Check out previous weeks' episodes in the "Behind the Headlines" archive.


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4 people like this
Posted by @PA Weekly
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Feb 17, 2018 at 9:11 am

Thanks PA Weekly for covering the airplane noise situation

There is an important development to follow ahead

San Francisco Airport has purchased a new landing system GBAS Satellite Navigation - Ground Based Augmentation System (GBAS) Web Link

and SEE Web Link

It would be helpful if you could do a story about GBAS and how SFO is planning to implement the new system.

11 people like this
Posted by Palo Alto Native
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Feb 23, 2018 at 11:40 pm

I started reporting each time I heard a plane. It's super easy at Web Link Just press the REPORT IT button and it states the date, time, airline, flight number, and the flying height. It's a list for each day. From where I live, there are flights I can hear all day long until Midnight, spaced 1-4 minutes apart, ALL DAY LONG, mostly 2 minutes apart. Flights continue past Midnight also, although less of them. This is completely insane! Whirling all day long, sometimes so loud that I can't hear the TV or phone call. It's time for a lawsuit. Four years of this so far!

8 people like this
Posted by CrescentParkAnon.
a resident of Crescent Park
on Feb 24, 2018 at 12:12 am

I don't really understand what they used to do that they kept jets way over Palo Alto in the distant past.
I lived in Palo Alto as a teen and was out very late at night very often with friends, especially in the summer
and I remember hearing planes and that they were very high up and could barely be heard.

Late at night in Palo Alto in the 70's and 80's you could hear a lot of birds chirping, but very few airplanes.

Now, I wonder how it was that they were able to do that, with at the time were what were surely louder
planes with less precision and automated controls?

What changed, and why cannot with better design can we not get what we used to have in the past?

8 people like this
Posted by Palo Alto Native
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Feb 24, 2018 at 1:37 pm

CrescentParkAnon., Agree, I grew up here since 1975 and the only way we knew a plane was over head was by looking up and seeing them up in the distance. From what I have read on SkyPosse, planes prior to 4 years ago were flying in on the Bay, not over us like now.

In addition, sometimes the jets circle around, waiting to land, so we hear that too. Over by Greenmeadow, they can see the planes lining up to prepare for landing.

From Skyposse Web Link

"Three major routes into SFO intersect over Palo Alto. The FAA implemented NextGen, changed flight procedures, and moved vast quantities of jet traffic over Palo Alto.

Flights from the north, south and west converge over a waypoint near the intersection of Willow Road and 101. They aim for an altitude of 4000 feet at MENLO and from there, take the final approach into SFO. James Sun analyzed traffic growth between 3K and 5K feet based on flight tracks received from the FAA. His analysis shows the number of flights from the south and southeast has grown substantially. Why? Traffic that used to fly other routes was moved over us.

Our community is under the convergence of 3 of the 4 approach routes into SFO, with traffic descending above Palo Alto from the North, South, and West. Few, if any other communities at these distances from SFO, OAK, or SJC experience this daily level of traffic."

Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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