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NextGen keeps U.S. at the forefront of 21st century aviation

NextGen keeps U.S. at the forefront of 21st century aviation

On Friday, the NextGen Institute held its annual public meeting, and I was pleased to speak about DOT’s commitment to investing in the aviation infrastructure America needs to thrive in the 21st century.

The Institute is a partnership between the Federal Aviation Administration and the aviation industry to work together on the definition, goals, development, and implementation of our Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen).

Our airspace system has served us well for over a half century.  The challenge we face today is ensuring that this system will continue to serve us well in the future.

As our airspace grows increasingly congested, we need smarter, satellite-based and digital technologies and new procedures that combine to make air travel safer, more efficient, and more environmentally friendly.

NextGen is our plan to make that happen.

It’s transforming the way we manage air traffic, moving us from the ground-based radar system of today to the satellite-based system of tomorrow. It's improving the way we do business for the traveling public, airlines, airports, and the environment. And, we’re already seeing its benefits all around the country.

Satellite-based navigation is making a big difference in Denver, where the FAA estimates these procedures will annually save operators $9.8 million dollars by reducing fuel usage.  United Airlines alone anticipates saving 100 to 200 pounds of fuel on each arrival into Denver International.

NextGen navigation is also saving time in Atlanta, where we can safely allow jets to take off slightly closer together at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport.  This means an additional eight to 12 planes departing per hour.  We estimate customers saved more than 11,000 hours by not waiting in line to take-off last year – 11,000 hours! 

And we intend to bring this type of efficiency to other major airports in the future.

By 2020, we project that NextGen will provide a 41 percent reduction in delays compared to what would happen if we did nothing to modernize our aviation system. 

But to keep making progress, we need the proper resources.

That's why President Obama's budget maintains this Administration’s commitment to America’s future aviation needs by requesting $15.6 billion for the FAA, including nearly $1 billion for investments in modernizing our national airspace through NextGen. 

NextGen saves time and money, and protects the environment – that’s an outcome that businesses, travelers, and the aviation industry can all agree on.

DOT and the FAA are ready and able to roll up our sleeves to continue working to modernize our national air traffic system. We’ve got the largest and safest aviation system in the world, and we will continue working together with the NextGen Institute to ensure that America stays at the forefront of aviation in the 21st century.


John Porcari is the Deputy U.S. Secretary of Transportation.

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While I was largely unaware of the NextGen program before visiting this blog, it seems quite useful and beneficial. Air travel is not going away; bringing it in line with the twenty-first century is arguably essential for domestic airports and airlines. Although more people may be affected by low-level air traffic, I do not see a viable alternative as long as air travel remains a primary mode of transportation. Saving money, fuel, and time benefits everyone. Not seeking further efficiency for fear of disturbing a relatively small number of nearby citizens seems rather irresponsible to the economy, the environment, and the many millions of travelers flying each year.

Dear Mr. Porcari, Below describes the consequences of your NextGen program involving La Guardia Airport in Queens: Northeastern Queens, including the towns of Bayside, Hollis Hills, Douglaston, Little Neck, Flushing and others has, for generations, been the type of community where hard-working young families, middle-class senior citizens, idealistic young professionals, studious college students, and enthusiastic newcomers have called home and where people take pride in their homes, schools, shops, professional practices, schools, senior centers, libraries, lawns and streets. Residents have worked long and hard in order to scrape up enough money to purchase a modest house or condo, rent a comfortable apartment, send their children to a good, safe school, or retire comfortably after many years of private or civil service. Over the past months, all of this has changed as the residents of northeastern Queens have been subjected to loud, constant, and intense aircraft noise continually agitating ears and rattling nerves over their homes, schools, libraries, yards, businesses, senior centers and all other local institutions. The FAA which has unilaterally changed the flight patterns of the 2 Queens airports, especially from runway 13 at LaGuardia, has caused hardship by imposing unrelenting, low-flying planes over our homes, businesses and institutions and refusing to listen to the requests and pleas of the residents and citizens—for whom they serve—to revert to the old air patterns. This unbearable situation, with aircrafts sometimes taking off several times a minute all day long, begins some days earlier than 6:00am and continues until after 11:00pm on some nights. The noise has created interference with our children attempting to meet federally mandated standards in their schools, and has inhibited commerce and, therefore, incomes, as potential customers divert their business to other areas. The noise has prevented senior citizens from hearing one another, even within the confines of their own homes and apartments, and has prevented retirees from enjoying a well-deserved day of peace in their own homes and gardens. The noise has already caused many residents to put their homes up for sale, and has caused potential new residents to fear moving into the area. Home prices are going down. People’s nerves are raw, and many are complaining of headaches and other physical and emotional ailments. Many long-time northeastern Queens residents have previously chosen to live in this area of New York City precisely because of its prior reputation for peacefulness, cleanliness, neighborliness and other embodiments of the American Dream. THE FAA IS KILLING, IN NORTHEASTERN QUEENS, WHAT LITTLE REMAINS OF THE AMERICAN DREAM. It is the FAA’s job and mission to “provide the safest, most efficient aerospace system in the world.” BUT, WE RESIDENTS UNDER THE LOW-FLYING PLANES DO NOT FEEL HAPPY OR SAFE IN OUR OWN HOMES AND BUSINESSES, NOR DO WE FIND THE FAA’S ACTIONS AND LACK OF ACTIONS “EFFICIENT” FOR THE POPULACE. According to their own words, the FAA strives “to reach the next level of safety, efficiency, environmental responsibility and global leadership.” WHERE IS THE ENVIRONMENTAL RESPONSIBILITY AND LEADERSHIP WHEN YOU ARE MAKING US PHYSICALLY, EMOTIONALLY, EDUCATIONALLY, AND FISCALLY ILL? The FAA states that they are “accountable to the American public and our stakeholders. Excellence is our promise. We seek results that embody professionalism, transparency and accountability. Integrity is our touchstone.” THERE IS NO EXCELLENCE, PROFESSIONALISM, TRANSPARENCY, ACCOUNTABILITY, OR INTEGRITY IN THIS MATTER. The residents of northeastern Queens will no longer allow the FAA to inhibit our Constitutional rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness in order to allow more flights to land at the 2 already over-used and over-crowded Queens airports. Enough is enough. The FAA should be working to eliminate the noise and air pollution that has been ongoing over all Queens neighborhoods for many years, not finding new neighborhoods to infect. We residents are also business travelers, vacation travelers and airport workers. We have no desire to impede the workings of the airport or airlines. We just want what is fair and right and just and American. We want our health, sanity, happiness and lives back. FAA- Stop abusing the good people of northeastern Queens. Revert to the former flight patterns! 마이클후어타, 연방항공관리국: 베이사이드, 홀리스힐스, 플러싱및퀸즈동북부상공의해로운비행양태를원상복귀하라 연방상원에청원함 연방항공관리국마이클후어타: 베이사이드, 홀리스힐스, 플러싱및퀸즈동북부상공의해로운비행양태를원상복귀하라 이블린쉑터, Ed D 뉴욕오우크랜드가든스주민이블린쉑터에의한청원 베 이사이드, 홀리스힐스, 더글라스톤, 리틀넥, 플러싱, 등을포함한퀸즈동북부는여러세대에걸쳐서열심히일하는젊은가정, 중산층노인, 이상주의적젊은전문직종사자, 열심히공부하는학생, 열정적최근이주자, 등이자기집으로생각하고자기들의집, 학교, 가게, 전문인직장, 노인센타, 도서관, 잔디밭과길거리, 등에자부심을느끼며살아온 공동사회다. 이곳주민들은검소한주택이나콘도를구입하고, 편안한아파트를렌트하고, 자녀들을좋고안전한학교에보내고, 수년동안개인적또는공공봉사를마친후편안하게은퇴하여살기위해충분한돈을벌기위해긴시간을열심히일해왔다. 그런데지난수개월에걸쳐서주택, 학교, 도서관, 뒷마당, 사업장, 노인센타, 병원, 등상공을나는항공기의시끄럽고, 지속적이고, 극심한 소음이퀸즈동북부주민들의청각과신경을교란시킴으로서이런모든것들이바뀌게되었다. 연방항공관리국은이지역주민들이예전의비행양태로원상복귀해달라는요청과청원을무시하고 2개퀸즈공항의비행양태를, 특히라과디아공항의13번활주로로부터, 일방적으로바꿔서주택, 사업장, 학교, 병원등상공으로끊일새없는저공비행을 항공기들에게허용함으로써이지역주민들을곤경에빠뜨리고있다. 온종일매분마다여러대의비행기가이륙하는이견딜수없는상태는어떤날은아침6시이전 에시작해서밤11시이후까지계속된다. 이소음은연방정부학교성적기준을달성해야하는우리들의자녀들에게지장을주고있으며, 잠재적고객들이 다른지역으로빠져나감으로서이지역의상업을억제하여매상을떨어뜨리고있다. 이소음은자기집과아파트안에서마저노인들이서로듣는데지장을주고있으며, 자기집과정원에서노인들이마땅히누릴수있는하루의안식을누리지못하게하고있다. 이소음은이미많은주민들이집을팔려고내놓게만들고, 잠재적인새주민들이이지역에이사오기를꺼리게하고있다. 집값이떨어지고있다. 사람들의신경이날카로워지고많은사람들이두통과신체적정서적불쾌감을호소하고있다. 퀸즈동북부에오래동안살아온많은주민들은예전의평화로움, 깨끗함, 사람다운이웃과어메리칸드림의구현때문에뉴욕시의이지역에살기를선택한사람들이다. 그런데연방항공관리국은퀸즈동북부지역에서그나마쫄아든어메리칸드림마저죽이고있다. “세 계에서가장안전하고효율적인항공관리체계를제공하는거야말로” 연방항공관리국의직무이며사명이다. 그런데, 저공으로나는비행기들밑에거주하는 우리는우리들의집과사업장에서행복하고안전하다고느끼지않는다. 또한연방항공관리국의 행위와 아무조처도취하지않는행위를여기사는주민들을위해서“효율적”이라고생각지않는다. 그들의말대로라면, 연방항공관국은“한단계높은안전성, 효율성, 환경보호책임과국제적리더쉽을달성하기위해” 부단히노력한다. 당신들이우리를신체적으로, 정서적으로, 교육적으로, 재정적으로병들게하는데, 당신들이말하는환경보호책임과리더쉽은어디에있다는말인가? 연방항공관리국은“미국시민과이해관계를가진사람들에게 책임을진다”고말하고있다. “우리는탁월함을약속한다. 우리는전문성, 투명성, 책임성을구현하는결과를추구한다. 우리의기준은성실성이다. “ 그런데이문제에서만은탁월성도없고, 전문성도없고, 투명성도없고, 책임성도없고, 성실성도없다. 퀸즈동북부주민들은연방항공관리국이기 존의지나치게이용되고북적거리는퀸즈의2개의비행장에더많은비행기가착륙하도록하기위해우리들의생명, 자유, 행복의추구에대한헌법적권리를침해하는것을더이상허용하지않을것이다. 이미우리는질렸다. 연방항공관리국은, 다른동네들에게나쁜영향을끼치지않으면서, 퀸즈지역의여러동네에 수년동안싸여온소음과더러운공기를없애기위한조처를취해야한다. 우리주민들도사업상여행객이며, 휴가여행객이며, 공항에서일하는사람들이다. 우리는공항이나항공사의일을방해할의도는없다. 단지우리는공정하고옳바른것, 미국적인것을원할뿐이다. 우리는 건강과, 건전한정신, 행복이깃든, 삶을되찾기를원하다. 연방항공관리국– 퀸즈동북부의선량한사람들을괴롭히는것을중지하라. 예전의비행양태로원상복귀하라! 貝賽、霍利斯山(Hollis Hills)、德格斯頓(Douglaston)、小頸及法拉盛等東北皇后區社區,一直被工作辛勞的年輕家庭、中產長者公民、懷有理想的年輕專業人士、學生及新社區成員視作自己的家園,大家熱愛區內的學校、商店、學校、長者中心、圖書館、草地及街道。因為要在區內購買或租一所不錯的房子公寓、送孩子上好的學校、讓自己退休後安享晚年,大家都願意努力花上很長的時間工作,以實現夢想。 但在過去數月,這些美好的生活因密集式的飛機噪音而完全改變,這些振耳欲聾的聲音無論在圖書館、學校、商店還是家中等地,都一直觸動區內所有人的神經,美國聯邦航空管理局(FAA)因改變了皇后區兩飛機場的飛行航道,致使航機低飛經過東北皇后區的各民宅和各社區建設,令大家無法安寧,當中尤以拉瓜地亞機場的13跑道為最。但當市民請願恢復舊航道時,當局卻拒絕聆聽他們的聲音。 這些無法令人忍受的噪音幾乎整日困擾著區內的市民,有時更從早上6時開始,每分鐘就有數班航機起飛,直至晚上11時,噪音已影響到學生學習,甚至令潛在的消費者往其他地方購物,造成經濟損害。 當然也影響到長者的聽力,就連他們安坐家中或自己的後花園,也無法享受應有的退休生活,也有居民開始出現頭痛的情況,身體不適、甚至患上情緒疾病。部份居民因此已決定出售他們的物業,遷出東北皇后區,但由於噪音的影響,新買主不願遷入,令房價下跌。 很多東北皇后區的市民選擇定居這裡,是因為當地素以幽靜、和平、清潔、鄰里互助互愛等特點見稱,是很多人的「美國夢」,但聯邦航空管理局正在扼殺東北皇后區,這個「美國夢」最後僅存的少數淨土。 聯邦航空管理局的工作使命是提供世上最安全、最快捷有效的空中服務系統,但我們的市民因航機低飛,完全無法因此而感到自己的家園和商店是安全的,也未感受到當局對民意作出任何快捷有效的回應。 根據聯邦航空管理局的介紹,當局希望可達到更安全的、更有效的服務水平,對環境承擔應有的責任,領導全球。但當你們令我們身心受創,影響我們的經濟及教育,又如何符合「對環境承擔應有的責任,領導全球」的目標? 聯邦航空管理局指出,他們「為美國的公眾、利益相關人士問責,承諾提供最優秀的服務。我們尋求專業、高透明度、可靠的服務。誠信是我們的試金石。」在今次的事件中,完全沒有優秀、專業、透明度、可靠及誠信可言。 因為聯邦航空管理局的決定,飛機要降落在原本已擁擠不堪的兩個皇后區機場,東北皇后區的市民再無法生活於憲法賦予的自由、追尋幸福的日子,我們受夠了,聯邦航空管理局應建決原本皇后區市民就面對的噪音及污染問題,而非找一個新的社區讓它承受這些。 我們的居民也是商旅人士、遊客及機場工作人員,我們不希望阻礙機場的運作,我們只想獲得美國人應有的公平、公義的對待,我們要求過去健康快樂的日子回來。 聯邦航空管理局,停止虐待東北皇后區的良好市民,改回以前的飛行航道! El noreste de Queens, incluyendo los pueblos de Bayside, Hollis Hills, Douglaston, Little Neck, Flushing y otros, han por generaciones sido el tipo de comunidad done familias jóvenes y trabajadoras, ciudadanos mayor de edad de clase media, profesionales jóvenes y, estudiantes universitarios estudiosos, y recién llegados entusiásticos han llamado hogar y donde gente tiene orgullo de sus hogares, escuelas, tiendas, practicas profesionales, centros para ciudadanos mayores de edad, librerías, céspedes y calles. Los residentes han trabajado largo y duro para juntar lo suficiente para comprar una casa modesta o un condo, rentar un apartamento cómodo, mandar a sus hijos/as a una buena escuela retirarse cómodamente después de muchos anos de servicio privado o civil. En los últimos meses, todo esto ha cambiado ya que los residentes del noreste de Queens han sido sometidos a ruido de aviones constante e intenso sobre sus hogares, escuelas, librerías, patios,comercios y otras instituciones locales, el cualcontinuamente agita los oídos y los nervios. El FAA, cual ha cambiado unilateralmente los itinerarios de vuelos en los dos aeropuertos de Queens, especialmente de la pista 13 en LaGuardia, ha causado dificultad imponiendo aviones que vuelan bajo, sobre nuestros hogares, comercios e instituciones, reusándose a escuchar las suplicas de los residentes y ciudadanos- a quien le sirven- y regresar a los previos itinerarios. Esta situación inaguantable, con aviones despegando a veces varias veces por minuto diariamente, a veces empieza antes de las 6 AM y continua hasta después de las 11PM en algunas noches. El ruido ha creado interferencia con nuestros hijos/as manteniendo los requisitos estándares en sus escuelas, ha inhibido el comercio, y por eso, los ingresos ya que los consumidores potenciales desvían su atención a otras áreas. El ruido previene que los ciudadanos mayor de edad se escuchen, aun en sus hogares y ha prevenido que los jubilados disfruten de un descanso bien merecido en sus propios hogares y jardines. El ruido ha causado que muchos residentes pongan sus hogares en venta y ha causado miedo de mudarse al área para nuevos residentes potenciales. Precios de casas están bajando. La gente se queja de nervios agitados, dolores de cabeza, y otros malestares físicos y emocionales. Muchos de los residentes del noreste de Queens habían escogido vivir en esta área de Nueva York precisamente por su previa reputación de tranquilidad, aseo, buena vecindad y otras personificaciones del sueno americano. EL FAA ESTA MATANDO LO POQUITO QUE QUEDA DEL SUENO AMERICANO EN EK NORESTE DE QUEENS. Es el deber y misión del FAA de “proveer el sistema mas seguro y eficaz en el mundo.” PERO, NOSOTROS LOS RESIDENTES BAJO LOS AVIONES QUE VUELAN BAJO NO NOS SENTIMOS FELIZ O SEGUROS EN NUESTRAS PROPIAS CASAS O COMERCIOS, Y NO ENCONTRAMOS QUE LAS ACCIONES Y FALTA DE ACCIONES DEL FAA SON “EFICAZES” PARA LA COMUNIDAD. En sus propias palabras, el FAA se esfuerza por “alcanzar el próximo nivel de seguridad, eficiencia, responsabilidad del ambiente y liderazgo global.” DONDE ESTA LA RESPONSABILIDAD DEL AMBIENTE CUANDO NOS ESTAN ENFERMANDO FISICAMENTE, EMOCIONALMENTE, EDUCACIONALMENTE Y FISCALMENTE? El FAA declara que son ”explicables al publico Americano y nuestras partes interesadas. Nuestra promesa es excelencia. Buscamos resultados que demuestra profesionalismo, transparencia y contabilidad. La Integridad es nuestra promesa.” NO HAY EXCELENCIA, PROFESIONALISMO, TRANSPARENCIA, ACOUNTABILIDAD O INTEGRIDAD EN ESTE ASUNTO.

Dear Mr. Porcari, With all due respect, you fail to take into account NextGen's harmful impact on those living under the narrow strip of its flight paths, particularly in the densely populated NY Metro area. Previously unaffected areas are being bombarded up to 20 hours a day by loud and low-flying aircraft at 30 second intervals. These planes are flying directly over homes, schools, parks, etc. Hundreds of thousands of people have had their quality of life destroyed and are facing severe health effects as a result of the increase in jet noise and pollution. I like to travel and am not against progress in aviation. However, that progress should not come at the expense of hard-working taxpayers who find programs like NextGen, and who have the misfortune of living under these new departure and landing routes.

Should we be sorry for the people that buy houses in the vicinity of an airport knowing that are loud noises involved with their operation? Most of the airports in this Country were built in the 40s so why people keep blaming the DOT, FAA, Airlines, Airports, pilots for their poor research and judgment when selecting to live under the "narrow strip" under the flight pat to any airport final runway. Airports have being there forever, house developments by quick money doers are the ones that should be addressed to. Thanks to all US entities involved with the efforts to make tracks, approaches and departures short but even safer. Our Country leads on this initiative for the last 20 years and we are finally getting there.