WASHINGTON, D.C. — New requirements were unveiled Thursday, March 17, by the FAA for residential through-the-fence (RTTF) access agreements at federally-funded airports. An interim policy requires airport sponsors with existing agreements that wish to continue RTTF to develop an airport access plan that outlines how the airport will meet its obligations to operate as a public-use airport, detailing safety of operations, self-sustainability, and non-discriminatory rates.
RTTF refers to airports that have residences adjacent to the airport with direct access where aircraft may taxi directly from the airport to residences where hangars are usually available.
The interim policy amends one condition of federal funding by prohibiting new RTTF access to a federally-funded airport.
RTTF agreements that are not consistent with FAA’s new policy may introduce safety risks by creating direct access to runways and taxiways, impede a sponsor’s ability to collect appropriate fees, or limit the airport’s ability to address future growth, according to FAA officials. RTTF agreements also may restrict airport access for all general aviation pilots because of noise concerns and hours of operation since residences are nearby, officials added. The FAA has no objections to these agreements at privately owned airports, if they do not receive federal funds.
The new policy is effective immediately, but the agency will conduct another review in 2014.