With more than 80,000 flights every year, Venice's lagoon airport is one of Italy's busiest airports, and the first after the airport systems of Rome and Milan.
Its coastal location, with a hinterland of rural areas (the inhabited centres of Mestre and Venice are 5-10 kilometres away), modern fleets and an operational configuration that uses head 04, means that significant noise affects almost exclusively the immediate lagoon area.
The study of the actual status of the airport's context, examined its acoustic zoning (ex-Min. Decree of 31 October 1997) and the Acoustic Classification Plans of the municipalities potentially affected (Venice, Quarto d'Altino, Marcon, Roncade and Cavallino-Treporti).
Acoustic zoning defines the area around airports and its zones (A, B, C). In areas within zone A, it is not allowed to exceed 65 dB (A) and no restrictions on the use of land are envisaged; in the areas of band B, it is not allowed to exceed 75 dB (A), while in band C, where only those activities which functionally relate to the use and services of airport infrastructures are allowed, it is permitted to exceed 75 dB (A).
According to the Acoustic Classification Plan of the Municipality of Venice, as approved by City Council Resolution No. 39 of 10/02/2005 and thus preceding the airport acoustic zoning, the Tessera airport falls into classes IV ("intense human activity area") and V ("predominantly industrial areas"). The rest of the area surrounding the airport area comes under Class III ("mixed type areas").
The comparison between airport zoning and municipal acoustic classification has led to some inconsistencies as the latter ignores take-off and landing routes, and takes into account only the physical perimeter of the infrastructures and classifies as Class III (mixed type areas) those areas which should be class IV (intense human activity), particularly to the south of the Triestinastate road.
For the construction and assessment of the impacts arising from the implementation of the Master Plan, the analysis provided for a modelling assessment of air-traffic noise (Integrated Noise Model 7.0d by the Federal Aviation Administration) and vehicle traffic from the airport (SoundPlan, version 6).
The impacts on the communities in the airport area were estimated using the "LVA" (Airport Noise Assessment Level) indicator, as defined in Ministerial Decree of 31/10/1997. A second indicator, the Equivalent Continuous Level ("LAeq" as defined in decree DPCM of 14/11/1997, "Assessment of the Limit Values for Sound Sources"), was also taken into account to describe both air and vehicle traffic noise at sensitive receptors located outside the relevant bands.
The scenario for 2021, which predicts an increase in air traffic of just over 25%, highlights a worsening in the measured critical conditions. The LVA contour lines take in a very small portion of the land, falling mostly in the lagoon area, with only the area of Tessera itself that still exceeds the 55 dB (LVA) threshold.
For this scenario, the negative impacts were however cautiously evaluated as low negatives, in relation to an increase in the number of people exposed to 60-65 dB (A) compared to 2013. It is also believed that the physiological turn-over of the fleets operating at the airport, which is not taken into account in the study, will also result in a lower impact compared to the current conditions than those during modelling, as more stringent certification standards are expected to be introduced.
The analysis confirms the validity of the airport-noise active monitoring system at Venice Airport while some mitigation measures have been identified to contain the impacts envisaged during operation, which concern:
LVA Map - Scenario in 2021
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