2003-04-05 / Community

Soundproofing Set For Three Rockaway Schools

Three local schools will soon get new windows and soundproofing provided by the Port Authority.

The schools, Beach Channel High School, Middle School 180 and Middle School 198, are part of a larger program to soundproof schools that are impacted by airport noise. Many Rockaway elementary schools have already been soundproofed as part of the program.

The cost of soundproofing the three Rockaway schools is in excess of $20 million, according to PA sources.

A record $44.5 million to provide quieter classrooms in 32 schools in New York and New Jersey was authorized by the Port Authority Board of Commissioners.

New York Governor George E. Pataki said, "It is imperative that our children have all the tools they need to excel in the classroom. This includes providing an environment that allows students to concentrate without the distraction of aircraft noise.  I applaud the Port Authority for its continued commitment to our children’s education."    

Port Authority Chairman Jack G. Sinagra said, "The Port Authority’s school soundproofing program has continually demonstrated its success in schools in New York and New Jersey. With our federal partners, the Port Authority’s 20-year commitment has provided the funding necessary to create a quiet learning environment." Port Authority Executive Director Joseph J. Seymour said, "We want to be good neighbors with the communities that surround our airports, and this funding will ensure that schoolchildren have the proper atmosphere to learn. Soundproofing has been proven to cut classroom noise levels in half and to reduce the school’s energy costs through the installation of new ventilation systems and acoustical windows."

The Port Authority has committed $226.2 million to soundproof 78 schools in New York and New Jersey since the program began in 1983.All schools in federally defined "noise-affected areas" around Port Authority airports are being soundproofed. The Port Authority’s school-soundproofing program will continue beyond these areas, with the agency determining future eligibility on a case-by-case basis.

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