Noise complaints about the Destin Executive Airport have been coming in for years. However, the recently completed noise wall is expected to provide the airport's nearby neighbors some relief.

Neighbors around the Destin Executive Airport can enjoy quieter days and nights at home with the help of a new noise wall that was installed at the northwest end of the airport.

The 270 feet long and 15 feet tall noise wall is made of concrete and has sound absorbing material like the median barriers used on highways and intersections. The wall was recommended by the Airport Compatibility Advisory Committee, which was created in 2007 to find solutions for compatibility issues with the surrounding neighborhoods. The noise wall was one of a few projects the committee set out to accomplish before the Board of County Commissioners voted to sunset them.

“I talked to some folks last week who live behind the wall and they are really pleased with it,” said Airports Project Manager Chad Rogers, who visited residents that live directly behind the wall on Misty Way. “You can't even see (the wall) on the homeowner’s side.”

Rogers said the magnolia and oaks trees are useful to disguise the will, but will also help with noise.

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Major construction on the wall started, which started in mid-January, was completed this week with just a few minor punch list items left to finish before work is totally completed. 

The concrete wall is replacing a 10 feet high wooden fence at an estimated cost $340,000. The county received grants to fund the construction of the noise wall.

“We are keeping up with our promises and being good neighbors,” said Airports Director Tracey Stage. “This wall will really improve the quality of life for residents in the area.”

David and Jan Barr live in one of the homes directly behind the wall on Mist Way. David said they heard intense noise from planes and helicopters at all times of the day, especially at the wee hours of the morning.

“We are really grateful for the wall," David said. "…It was much needed to reduce the intense noise of planes (taking off).”

The Barr’s moved into the area in 2004 and they said there was a gap that needed to be covered from their home and the airport.

“We knew there was an airport very close to us when we moved in and didn’t expect the neighborhood to be free of noise,” Jan said. “We feel that the new wall is a reasonable compromise and we really appreciate what they have done”