Air Force officials have decided to impose operational limitations on F-35 training flights at Eglin Air Force Base on the Florida Panhandle to reduce noise over the city of Valparaiso, according to a record of decision published Wednesday.
Officials selected the “no action alternative” for the basing of up to 59 F-35s at the Eglin joint training site, which represented the environmentally preferred alternative.
“The Air Force listened to the community’s concerns and worked hard to find a solution that meets mission requirements and also reduces noise impacts,” said Kathleen Ferguson, acting assistant secretary for installations, environment, and energy.
The decision demonstrates the Air Force’s desire to limit impacts on communities around Eglin, Ferguson said. As a result, Runway 12/30 will remain the primary runway at Eglin main base for F-35 operations, with Runway 01/19 only being used for takeoffs to the south, landings to the north or for emergencies, reported the Northwest Florida Daily News.
“We are making every attempt to mitigate noise through operational adjustments wherever feasible, not just now, but in future operations as well,” she said.