Controversial ‘Tennis Climb’ route sends planes ROARING over Queens neighborhood

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(QUEENS) – All was quiet in Bayside Queens on Monday. This is rare because residents like Cecilia Cody say it is normally filled with, “Noise torture, that’s what it is.”

Cody has lived here for the past thirty-five years. However, it was only until recently that her nightly ritual started requiring a soft touch to block out the sounds overhead, “I put in earplugs to go to sleep. This is what we are left to deal with, it’s simply horrendous.”

What she is referring to is the sound from airliners utilizing a “TNNIS 4” climb out of LaGuardia’s Runway 13.  On Monday, major carriers were making their ascents in the opposite direction.

However, ever since early 2012 there has been a dramatic uptick in traffic heading over Bayside Queens and the surrounding areas due to the FAA opting to utilize a flying procedure called “TNNIS 4” climbs.

Assemblyman Ed Braunstein lives in the district and is trying to change the pattern that become more prevalent more than 18-months ago.  According to Braunstein, on certain days the takeoffs begin early, “Starting at 6:00 a.m. you can set your watch to it.  You’ll have a plane going off once a minute.”

FAA imagery shows what the “TNNIS 4” climbs look like compared to the Whitestone and Flushing climb in side-by-side imaging.  The trajectory of the “TNNIS 4” Climb is much more concentrated and the repeated ascents more accurate.  The pink area that completely covers the map in one section reflect the ascents that are right on top of one another. 

The reason for this is due to RNAV equipped aircraft which has improved settings and navigation.  

However, it hasn’t improved Cody’s sleep patterns who just last month logged times that stretched, “Until 1:09 in the next morning.”
What drives all this?  Is it the U.S Open as many have assumed in the past? The FAA says think again.   According to a report, this is about de-conflicting airspace. 

Assemblyman Braunstein agrees, adding, “It’s really the flight traffic at JFK drives the flight traffic at LaGuardia.”

However, what Assemblyman Braunstein along with other politicians at the local, state, and federal level are hoping for, is that the FAA conducts a study utilizing monitors on the ground to identify if measures need to be taken regarding the aforementioned, “noise torture.”