CALGARY – Hundreds of angry people filled the Marlborough Community Centre once again Thursday night.
They were expressing concerns over airplane noise, primarily from the new runway installed at Calgary International Airport almost two years ago.
Because there are now parallel runways, planes must deviate 10 degrees when taking off. Those heading east often make their turns over homes in communities like Marlborough.
“The noise is just unbearable with airplanes coming in every couple of minutes,” Don Fisherman, who sits on the Airplane Noise Committee that formed in October of last year, said.
“I’m suffering severely now from headaches, migranes. I can’t sleep at night…. My beds vibrate. Everything,” longtime Marlborough resident Marlene Sailer said.
The police were on hand at Thursday’s meeting after tempers flared and what Fisherman called a “fiasco” at the last meeting in January.
The Calgary Airport Authority (CAA) said they’re listening to concerns and trying to come up with solutions but there’s no easy fix.
“Airplanes are regulated to turn away from each other when they are flying. It’s just a regulated requirement,” Jody Moseley with the CAA said. “But what we need to do is look at any opportunity to get them as straight in and as straight out as possible.”
Moseley said they’re looking into the possibility of flying higher and getting planes out of the way quicker when they do have to fly over homes.
“I will say, I will believe it when I see it,” Sailer said.
“We’re not satisfied with the answers because we believe – based on what other cities have done – there are solutions to this problem,” Fisherman added.
Dozens of residents voiced their concerns and questions in a question and answer period following a presentation by the CAA.
Among those stepping up to the mic was a retired pilot Cal Cavendish – who highlighted the predicament of a growing city, with a poem:
“So when that liner comes over late in the night,
it’s the voice of the future with bright landing lights.
Bringing commerce and wealth that we take and we give,
and families in love to the place where we live.”