FAA Issues Residential “Through The
March 18, 2011 - The Federal Aviation Administration
(FAA) on Thursday issued its interim policy on
residential through-the-fence (RTTF) access agreements
at federally-funded airports (background
This action adopts an interim policy amending and
clarifying FAA policy concerning through the fence
access to a federally-obligated airport from an adjacent
or nearby property, when that property is used as a
residence, and permits continuation of existing access
subject to certain standards.
This action also modifies sponsor grant assurance 5, Preserving Rights and Powers, to prohibit new residential through-the-fence access to a federally-obligated airport.
policy discouraged through-the-fence access to a
federally-obligated airport from an off-airport residence.
Owners of properties used both as a residence and for the
storage of personal aircraft, sometimes called “hangar homes,”
had urged the agency to permit an exception to the
through-the-fence policy for residents who own aircraft.
outlines the requirements that airport sponsors must follow if
they wish to continue RTTF agreements at federally-funded
airports. These agreements allow people who own residential
property with aircraft storage facilities near an airport to
access the airport from off-airport property. These properties
are sometimes known as "hangar homes."
interim policy requires airport sponsors with existing
agreements to develop an airport access plan that outlines how
the airport will meet its obligations to operate as a public-use
airport. The plan must detail how the airport sponsor meets
standards for control of the airport, safety of operations,
self-sustainability, and nondiscriminatory airport rates.
also amends one of the conditions of federal funding, called
grant assurances, to prohibit new RTTF access to a
also may restrict airport access for all general aviation pilots because
of noise concerns and hours of operations since residences are nearby.
The FAA has no objections to these agreements at privately owned
airports, if they do not receive federal funds.
At this time, the
FAA is adopting an interim policy. The policy review conducted in 2010
highlighted a number of differences among the airports identified as
having residential through the- fence arrangements. As a result, the FAA
believes it will take more time and more detailed information to better
understand these arrangements and how they impact each airport sponsor’s
ability to comply with its grant assurances.
agency also acknowledges that interested stakeholders have a more
immediate need for resolution. The goal of the interim policy is to
strike a careful balance by accommodating residential through-the-fence
access where it already exists.
To date, the FAA has not been able to clearly define the specific criteria or requirements that would allow airport sponsors to enter into new residential through-the-fence arrangements while ensuring ongoing compliance with their grant obligations.
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