How to Make BBTCA Quiet

About 5:30 pm on Friday, June 19, Watefront Toronto organizers and staff started preparing for the Queen’s Quay Opening slated for 6 pm at the Simcoe WaveDeck.

The screen shot below shows the location of the Simcoe WaveDeck.

Simcoe WaveDeck Location

Location of the Opening Ceremonies

The next screen shot shows the location of the WebTrak 5 monitor – the yellow circle containing the number 62. The WebTrak monitor registers the location, type, noise level and time of flights departing and arriving at Billy Bishop Toronto Centre Airport (BBTCA) as they fly over the bay.

WebTrak 5 Monitor Location

The nearby WebTrak 5 monitor (yellow circle)

Its proximity to the Simcoe WaveDeck suits it perfectly to record the activity of flights before and after the 6 pm Waterfront Toronto ceremonies, an event at which Mayor John Tory spoke.

Anyone who has spent much time on the central waterfront will be familiar with the noise levels coming from the planes departing and landing at the BBTCA.

NOW magazine recently cited one person’s experience.

“Federal NDP candidate and NOJets board member Jennifer Hollett says she recently moderated a discussion at the Harbourfront where speakers had to pause every time a plane went overhead. ‘[One speaker] turned to the crowd and she said ‘you guys really need to do something about this’.”

It’s not difficult to imagine Mayor Tory’s embarrassment if his speech was interrupted by a noisy Q400 flown by Porter Airlines, the company that wants to bring equally noisy jets to the waterfront.

Ironically, the wind direction at that time, east to west, meant the sound of aircraft taxiing to take-off position was blown away from the proceedings.  The wind direction also meant aircraft leaving BBTCA would fly over the bay and past the ceremonies, as this Air Canada screenshot departure shows.

Air Canada 5 30 flight to Montreal June 19

Air Canada Flight 7522 to Montreal shown here 28 seconds after departure

When faced with a delicate situation like this, what can an airport expansionist do?

One possible solution may be found in the screenshot from FlightStats.com of Porter’s schedule for the 5:30 to 7 pm time slots when the Waterfront Toronto opening ceremonies would be most affected.  Note: Registration with FlightStats is required in order to access the historical record.

Delayed Departures June 19 Waterfront Opening 2

Delayed Departures June 19 Waterfront Opening.

The historical record shows one cancellation and six delayed flights in one important hour
Of course other explanations are possible for delays and cancellations: computer glitches, staffing difficulties, weather and mechanical problems or the ever-useful technical difficulties.

 

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