Brooklyn Heights Brahmin Goes Bonkos Over Tourist Choppers

Former BHA president and retired advertising kingpin Neil Calet lets loose on the city’s plan to allow more tourist helicopters to operate out of the downtown Manhattan heliport, directly across the East River from Brooklyn Heights.  The NY Post speculates that could mean an additional 75 tourist flights above Brooklyn Heights per day.

Chopper noise is so bad now, Calet tells the paper that “[w]e can no longer sit on our balcony because even nose-to-nose conversation is impossible.”

The Brooklyn Heights Association has publicly stated that it wants an outright ban on the helicopter flights.

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  • Claude Scales

    War on fun? Whose fun? I’m no “brahmin”, and I live on Montague, not Columbia Heights, but I have found the helicopter noise increasingly frequent and loud in recent years. I know tourism is of great importance to the City’s economy, and I don’t favor a ban on such flights, but hope a reasonable compromise can be made concerning timing and number of flights, as well as restrictions on flight paths and altitudes over residential areas.

  • Homer Fink

    note – “bonkos” is a Regis Philbin/Larry David running gag. Yes, obscure but please indulge me.

  • Claude Scales

    Who am I to question Regis?

  • Josh

    the real problem are the traffic helicopters in the early mornings –

  • my2cents

    Trying for an outright ban is counterproductive. Why not just fight the increase? Or fight for a minimum altitude for all helicopters (some fly super low!). I do hate the noise they make, but we’ll never do away with them entirely.

  • heightsdiho

    I for one am sick and tired of being strafed by helicopters on a regular basis. They fly very low and it seems to me (ok, so I’m not an aeronautics expert) that they take unnecessary chances and are not only a noise nuisance, but also a safety threat. I agree w/ my2cents. We probably won’t achieve a ban, but how about fighting the increase and establishing some guidelines? I’m up for it!

  • ABC

    I’m not sure banning them is counterproductive. Btw the tragic accident and the security lapses, tourist helicopters over Manhattan may be an idea whose time has past.

  • http://none bhblogger

    The early morning news choppers that wake me up are the worst. The next are the police and tourist choppers that fly in circles over our building on Willow Street and the Bklyn Bridge. As a 20 year resident I have seen the frequency and severity of this problem escalate. I have called the Eastern Regional Helicopter group in DC several times but it does not seem to be doing anything so, I’m up for supporting local change efforts. Either that or find out who gives the orders to have the choppers fly tours, sit hovering over our building, or circle endlessly, find out where they live, and rent a chopper and go sit directly over their house for a few hours.

  • In The Heights

    We too are plagued by the noise pollution! We live on Willow Street on the back of the building and are lucky enough to have a great view, but the choppers are getting worse. The last time Obama was here, there was a police helicopter hovering right outside of our window for an hour. I couldn’t hear myself think it was so loud and the entire building was vibrating.

  • the banned

    oh for heavens sake, the sound of helicopters comes and goes. One has to be a bit neurotic to be bothered by it.
    if they lived in the country, these same folks would be driven crazy by lawnmowers and crickets. The world is messy and noisy. make peace with it.

  • nabeguy

    TB, I really have to wonder whether or not you actually reside in this neighborhood. If you did, then you’d understand the maddening sound of a hovering traffic helicopter 400 feet above your rooftop at 6:30 in the morning. Not coming and going. Hovering. In one spot. For a half an hour. While you’re trying to get in the last remnants of sleep.
    If you truly live here and can’t admit to having ever heard that, then you’re either deaf, a heavy sleeper or live in a basement apartment where the sound may be drowned out by the boiler. Even in the country, there’s a difference between ambient crickets and a locust attack.

  • heightsdiho

    Bravo, nabeguy!

  • David on Middagh

    Tourist helicopters are not just “noise pollution”–they contribute to the overall helicopter sonic assault. (I don’t think assault is too strong a word–the noise is damaging.) Tourist helicopters provide pleasure and revenue for a few people at the expense of many.

    I would ban both tourist and traffic helicopters. Let people call in the commute slowdowns from their cell phones as they inch along.

  • Andrew Porter

    Where can I rent a World War 2 barrage balloon?

    The sound from copters over the North Heights and the Bklyn Bridge bounces off the St. George Tower and into my apt at all hours, especially at 6am when there’s an early morning traffic backup.

  • D Gioseffi

    This idea of more helicopters for tourist trade is just one more of the ways that Mayor Bloomberg puts profits before people. He is always more concerned about the bottom line than the quality of life in this city when it comes to revenues or OVER-development. He just does not get it, that the quality of life here is an issue over too much population piled in high rises, too much OVER development for the ecosystem, and too much tourist trade that chokes the city and destroys the quality of life for those who live here and pay the taxes. He is the king of eminent domain, not caring enough about preserving neighborhoods, not caring enough about noise pollution, not caring enough about some of the important issues that make the QUALITY of life in the city tolerable. The helicopter noise over this high paying taxed area is deafening and destructive of health and well being. We can’t stand MORE helicopter and airplane noise here in Brooklyn Heights. I love this neighborhood and have lived here for 45 years, but noise, pollution, constant use f the neighborhood for a movie set, and more helicopter noise, impossible traffic jams, impossible parking, etc. over development of high rise luxury buildings, piling more and more on the ecosystem is driving me to distraction and out of my beloved neighborhood. We should not stand for it and we need to let the mayor know how much we are against it. Four more years of Bloomberg will only bring more noise and more over development and more pollution of all kinds. NO to more helicopters driving us mad.