The City of Fort Worth seems to have too much of a good thing: industrial air traffic.

In 2018, the Alliance Airport completed their runway expansion project, lengthening them to 11,000 feet to accommodate larger aircraft and transatlantic hauls. Also in 2018, a study of the area showed the airport's increased traffic has affected 264 homes in the Rivers Edge neighborhood. As a result, the City of Fort Worth has requested an additional $15mm in FAA grants for installing sound insulation in the affected homes.

Alliance Airport's runways draw a nearly straight line toward the River's Edge NeighborhoodSource: Google Maps

The FAA will make their decision known in August of this year. Should the grants be approved, it will bring the total value of Alliance Airport's FAA noise grants to $34mm. As of April 14, 2023, 53 homes have had their sound insulation completed. To be considered completed, the FAA requires the noise be lowered by at least 5.0 decibels. Currently, 150 homes are in the process of receiving the insulation with completion projected by the end of 2024.

It is doubtful that any amount of sound insulation can drown out the noise from the Fort Worth Alliance Air ShowSource: Wikimedia Commons

In return for this assistance, the homeowners are required to agree to an aviation easement allowing free and unobstructed use of the air space over their houses. For all residents hoping to build a backyard tower, I send my thoughts as you have your dreams crushed by NIMBYism (and aviation safety requirements).

The homes are fairly new construction, having been built from 2008-2012. While this certainly raises the question "why did you buy a house near the airport if you didn't want to hear airplanes," there is a valid counterargument that the airport's expansion led to noise beyond acceptable levels. 

Cargo aircraft, such as this Boeing 727, may have low bypass turbofan engines, which are much louder than modern high bypass turbofansSource: Wikimedia Commons

At the time of its construction, Alliance Airport had no residential neighbors. However, the area has seen mass development, with the airport acting as a catalyst for industrial and, in turn, population growth.

Despite modern airplanes being quieter than ever, the cargo aircraft that frequent Alliance tend to be older than most passenger jets, possibly even using older, much louder low bypass turbofan engines. Combined with heavier aircraft after the runway expansion, it is no surprise that neighbors have some complaints.