Airport Vicinity Protection Area FAQs
The following FAQs have been developed to help answer your questions about Airport Vicinity Protection Area (AVPA) regulations.
Are AVPA regulations required to protect 24-hour operations of the Edmonton International Airport?
According to the Government of Canada, all airports that have a demand for it are open 24-hours a day, seven days a week. Regulations like the AVPA are not necessary and therefore uncommon across Canada. The city supports 24-hour operations at the Edmonton International Airport and commits to this continued support as part of the Edmonton Metropolitan Region. We recognize the important role this plays in our collective success.
Does the AVPA regulations help reduce noise complaints to the Edmonton International Airport?
The AVPA does not directly reduce noise complaints. In fact, the AVPA utilizes NEF contours that do not include noise monitoring data. Noise complaints are triggered by the level of noise perceived. This can be mitigated through other municipal planning measures and tools, as well as through the existing modernized building construction standards and improvements to aviation technology.
According to the Edmonton International Airport Noise Advisory Committee, the airport received a total of 41 noise complaints that were attributed to aircrafts arriving/departing between January and November 2020. Of those, two were generated from within the City of Leduc. In all of 2019, the airport received 264 noise complaints, four of which came from within Leduc.
How have AVPA regulations been reviewed or amended since they were first developed?
A major update to AVPA regulations was completed in 2006, followed by minor revisions in 2017 as part of an extensive update to the Municipal Government Act (MGA); however, the NEF contours were not reviewed at this time.
Amendments to significantly reduce NEF contours around the Calgary airport impacting development in the City of Calgary were being discussed earlier this year. It is important to understand that because the regulations are separate, revisions made to one are not automatically applied to the other. Unlike the Calgary AVPA, the Edmonton AVPA has received very few amendments and are not actively being considered.
Are the AVPA regulations at the Calgary airport the same as the Edmonton airport?
No. There are two separate AVPA regulations in Alberta – one for the Calgary airport and one for the Edmonton airport. AVPA regulations at the Calgary airport are significantly less constraining than the regulations at the Edmonton airport.
What land use decisions has the City of Leduc made to mitigate noise complaints to the airport?
The city has a proven record of making responsible land use decisions through local planning frameworks, such as the Municipal Development Plan (MDP) and area structure plans, that help mitigate noise complaints to the airport.
For example, the city has:
- Implemented a buffer within the West Area Structure Plan that spaces out residential uses from future industrial lands at the airport and within the 65th Avenue ASP, despite that area being outside the NEF contours.
- Implemented MDP policies that promote innovative site planning, construction techniques and building standards that will mitigate impacts from significant noise generators such as Edmonton International Airport, the Canadian Pacific Railway and the QE II Highway – with reference to industry recommendations, such as rail proximity guidelines.
- Refused or relocated development that could have been impacted by noise, according to the AVPA regulations.
Additionally, the MDP directs residential development away from those significant noise generators and provides a buffer to ensure minimal impacts on residential neighborhoods.
Do other major airports in Canada use AVPA regulations?
Busier Canadian airports—like Vancouver, Toronto and Montreal—thrive in the absence of an AVPA-like regulation and have vibrant neighbouring communities sitting adjacent to them. All major airports and neighbouring communities employ compatible land use planning tools and noise abatement procedures that are tailored to them in order to balance the needs of the airport and surrounding communities, and reduce red tape. There are many successful and prosperous airports coexisting with strong, resilient neighbouring municipalities.