Roughly 50 Quogue residents showed up last week to say they have had enough with noise at the 68-year-old Gabreski Airport.
"We have had a number of complaints about noise," said Quogue Mayor Peter Sartorius. "The thrust of the complaints is from the people that live in the northern part of Quogue. They are worried about additional traffic and they say the noise is bothersome."
Saying their part at a Gabreski Airport Community Advisory Board meeting, held at Quogue Village Hall on Thursday night, the residents also said they fear that if the 1,453-acre Suffolk County-owned airport is developed further, the problem will only get worse. Currently, Grabeski hosts three runways, six taxi-ways and 15 acres of aircraft parking.
Airport manager Anthony Ceglio attempted to ease the resident's fears explaining that a company is looking to construct 25 hangars on the property, though, that proposal has not been officially submitted and when it is, it will be subject to community discussion.
Currently, Ceglio says there are 47-acres available for development on the property as part of an internal land use plan, which originally stated that 173-acres could be developed.
"We came up with a revised plan," said Ceglio. "With 127 acres less of development."
Ceglio also said that there is no pressing need to push for development at this time, especially when looking at the numbers.
"Our operations are down 35 percent and I imagine that is a reflection of the economy, especially with small airplanes. They can't afford the gas."
Ciglio also responded to noise complaints, saying that wind patterns this past summer have forced some flights to take off toward residential areas in Quogue.
"I've never seen it like this before," said Ciglio.
Ciglio says Gabreski does have a noise abatement committee that constantly strives to cut noise levels. The committee has already established a complaint procedure, as well as put up signs on all runways advising pilots on noise reducing procedures, such as avoid overflying residential area and using quiet power settings.