Grant to pay for most of noise study at OSU's airport

Ohio State University has received a federal grant to begin a noise and land-use compatibility study for its airport, Don Scott Field.

The Federal Aviation Administration will pay 95 percent of the $533,673 cost of the first of the study's two phases. The airport will pay the rest, airport spokeswoman Cathy Ferrari said.

Members of the group

We Oppose Ohio State Airport Expansion remain skeptical.

"It's definitely a good step," said the group's former president, Dennis Hennen. However, he's concerned the airport's recent history doesn't bode well, citing canceled meetings and faulty data.

"As a former pilot of many years, I looked at these and said, 'Wait a minute,' " said Jane Weislogel, the group's vice president. "They underreported all kinds of things.

"To be able to use the data they have for the study is not appropriate because it doesn't include all the complaints they got."

Ferrari said the airport's last noise study was in 1990. The master plan for Don Scott was updated in 2002.

"We'd ultimately submit this to the board of trustees so they can see it match up with the noise study," she said.

The master plan includes a runway expansion and new hangars, Ferrari said.

"The runway expansion means more of a safety margin for pilots," she said. "It also allows us to put an instrument-landing system in (that) we currently don't have and allows planes to come in on a glide and quieter."

A committee representing the Northwest Side, Worthington, Dublin, Riverlea and Sharon and Perry townships as well as airport-users and central Ohio organizations will provide feedback throughout the study, she said. Three public open houses, including a public hearing, will be conducted

to answer questions and collect comments, Ferrari said.

The first phase, beginning in September, will document noise levels from current and projected aircraft operations, she said. The second phase will recommend steps to mitigate the effect of noise on the surrounding area for a radius of about 3 miles, Ferrari said.

The FAA also will pay 95 percent of the second phase, which is estimated to cost between $200,000 and $300,000. The airport will pay the rest.

The study is expected to be completed in two years.