In crash aftermath, Airport communities call for officials to re - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

In crash aftermath, Airport communities call for officials to re-visit buyout program

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Wreckage from the crash of UPS Flight 1354 near the Birmingham airport. (abc3340.com) Wreckage from the crash of UPS Flight 1354 near the Birmingham airport. (abc3340.com)

In the aftermath of the UPS plane crash near the Birmingham-Shuttlesworth Airport early Wednesday morning, many residents living near the site are calling for officials to re-visit the Airport Authority's buyout program.

The program ended in 2012. But residents, like Willie Biggs, say they no longer feel safe near the airport and prefer to sell their properties too.

The buyout program, funded by federal authorities, began several years ago. It was the result of a federal Noise Compatibility Program. According to the Birmingham Airport Authority, the plan "allows airports to identify properties surrounding the airport that are adversely affected by airplane noise." It also sought to improve the surrounding quality of life as the airport continued its expansion efforts. The plan cost some $80 million, and was 95 percent funded by the federal government. More than 700 houses, seven churches, five commercial properties and a school were included in the Airport Authority's acquisition.

Councilor Maxine Parker says she has received calls from people wanting to sell their properties. A spokesperson with the Birmingham Airport Authority tells ABC 33/40 the group has no comment on any of its projects until the plane crash investigation is complete.

Stay with ABC 33/40 for more on this developing story.

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