Logan Airport and MassPort Community Advisory Committees (CACs)

Logan Airport Community Advisory Committee (CAC)

The CAC represents those communities which have authorized representatives and which are, or may be affected by Airport-related aircraft noise. The primary roles of the CAC's involvement during this study are to: (1) provide the FAA and Massport with input on aircraft noise issues related to the Airport, particularly as it relates to the identification of potential noise abatement measures, (2) provide input on suggested criteria to be used in evaluating and comparing those measures, and (3) recommend to Massport those measures that might be recommended to the FAA for implementation.

Currently, the CAC represents over 30 communities, cities, and towns within the Greater Boston area. CAC worked jointly with FAA and Massport to develop the scope of work for the noise study, and will identify and evaluate potential runway use measures to be in included in a runway use program to replace the Preferential Runway Advisory System (PRAS) that the CAC voted to abandon in April 2012 because it had failed to achieve the intended noise abatement. CAC also manages and directs efforts conducted by the Independent Consultant, who was selected to provide technical assistance and education for the CAC.


Watertown's Primary Representative on the CAC is Dennis Duff and Alternate Member Harvey Steiner.

If you have issues related to aircraft noise please contact the Massachusetts Port Authority Noise Complaint Line: (617) 561-3333 or visit their online form.

MassPort Community Advisory Committee (MassPort CAC)

The MassPort Community Advisory Committee (MassPort CAC) was created by an Act of the Massachusetts Legislature in 2015. Its statutory charges are:

1. Make recommendations to the Massachusetts Port Authority (MassPort) on its budgets;
2. Hold hearings on matters related to MassPort;
3. Review and comment on MassPort's Annual Report;
4. Examine MassPort's records; and
5. Make recommendations to the Governor and Legislature relative to MassPort.

MassPort operates facilities including the Boston Fish Pier, Conley Container Terminal, Cruise Ship port, Hanscom Field, Logan International Airport, the Port of Boston, and Worcester Regional Airport.

The MassPort CAC members are appointed by the Chief Executive Officer in the City or Town, and reflect municipalities that host MassPort facilities.  In addition to Watertown, the other member communities include Arlington, Bedford, Belmont, Beverly, Boston (multiple members), Braintree, Brockton, Cambridge, Canton, Chelsea, Cohasset, Concord, Everett, Hingham, Hull, Lincoln, Lexington, Lynn, Malden, Marblehead, Medford, Melrose, Milton, Nahant, Quincy, Randolph, Revere, Salem, Scituate, Somerville, Swampscott, Weymouth, Winthrop and Worcester.

The MassPort CAC also has three Standing Committees:  Executive, Aviation Operations and Environment & Health drawn from the overall membership.

On Wednesday, November 15, 2017 MassPort held a public informational forum regarding the RNAV study, Block 1 technical analysis. The meeting resulted in a vote by the MassPort CAC to support the Block 1 changes. Click here for the letter to MassPort (PDF).

 Below is a link to a briefing from R. John Hansman of MIT on noise reduction related to RNAV. MIT RNAV Briefing, September 28, 2017 (PDF)

Click on the links below to see the presentations given at a recent forum on Airport Noise held in Watertown:

1. History of Logan CAC and MassPort CAC, by Andrea Adams, Senior Planner (PDF)
2. Topics related to Airport Noise, by Myron Kassaraba, Belmont MassPort CAC member (PDF)

As reported in the November 16, 2016 Watertown TAB article (PDF) in 2013, MassPort instituted a new aircraft procedure at Logan International Airport, RNAV, which uses GPS-like technology to more precisely locate aircraft, thereby allowing more efficient airspace use. Implementation of RNAV has resulted in aircraft route compression, creating different and more intense impacts from aircraft over-flights of neighborhoods in Arlington, Belmont, Cambridge and Watertown.

In September, 2016 the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with MassPort to study issues connected to RNAV procedures. Click here to see the MOU (PDF).

On February 22, 2017, MassPort held a public hearing to gather comments on the proposed RNAV study. Click here to see the PowerPoint slides from the hearing (PDF), including from R. John Hansman, MIT International Center for Air Transportation, the consultants selected to conduct the RNAV study.

On May 5, 2017, John Hansman, MIT, provided a briefing to the MassPort CAC Aviation Operation Subcommittee on the RNAV Study. Click here to see the update (PDF), or go to the link above for the MassPort CAC website.

In April, 2017, MassPort released a report on Phase 3 (PDF) of the Boston Logan Airport Noise Study. Also, more data is available on the entire BLANS through a website maintained by MassPort.

On November 15, 2017, MassPort held an informational forum regarding the RNAV study, Block 1 analysis.  The meeting resulted in a vote by the MassPort CAC to support the Block 1 changes.  Click here to see the letter.

On February 6, 2018, the MassPort CAC Aviation Operations Subcommittee held a workshop on Logan's noise monitoring system.  Two Powerpoint presentations were given by MassPort/Logan staff.  Below, please find links to the presentations:

1.  Noise and Noise Monitoring Basics

2.  MassPort/Logan Aircraft Noise Monitoring System

On April 18, 2018, the MassPort CAC Aviation Operations Subcommittee held a meeting on the next phase of ways to potentially address RNAV impacts (Block 2).  Click here for the PowerPoint presentation given by MIT's Dr. Hansman.

MassPort has been working to update their Strategic Plan.  The January 2018 MassPort Board meeting presentation provides insight into this planning process.  Note that MassPort owns/operates several facilities, so the document is large.  The Strategic Plan starts at about page 39.  Click here to see the presentation.

The MassPort CAC full membership met on June 14, 2018.  Click here for a link to the Committee's PowerPoint presentation.  

MassPort provided an update to the MassPort CAC at the Committee's June 14, 2018 meeting.  Click here to see MassPort's PowerPoint presentation.

MassPort provided an update on the status of the Block One and Block Two work to address noise issues related in part to RNAV and flight operations.  Click here to see an excerpt on just these issues from the larger June 14, 2018 PowerPoint presentation.

JetBlue announces schedule to retrofit aircraft fleet with Vortex Generators, which reduce a distinctive aircraft noise produced by the Airbus A320 group of aircraft. Click here to see the announcement.

Representatives of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) attended the October 18, 2018 MassPort CAC General Meeting, and gave a review of the FAA's analysis of the Block One recommendations.  Click here for the PowerPoint.

Dr. Hansman, MIT, provided the MassPort CAC with an update concerning Block 1 and Block 2.  Click here to view his slide deck.

EPA has awarded $541,000 grant to MassPort to replace diesel ground equipment at Logan.  Click here for the article.

Andrea Adams, Senior Planner, Department of Community Development & Planning, is Watertown's representative on the MassPort CAC. Email her at aadams@watertown-ma.gov or call 617-972-6417.