Gnoss Field Airport Proposed Runway Extension EIS and EIR

Gnoss Field Approach


Gnoss Field Background

Gnoss Field Airport (Marin County Airport) is a public airport operated, managed and maintained by the Marin County Public Works Department.  It is located in the unincorporated area approximately three miles northeast of the City of Novato on a 120-acre site situated between U.S. Highway 101 and the Petaluma River.  Gnoss Field is classified as a "general aviation" airport, which is defined by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) as an airport that serves personal and business aircraft, but not scheduled commercial airlines. 

Gnoss Field is the nearest general aviation facility to San Francisco and is also close to the Sonoma/Napa wine country.  As a result, it is a popular destination for both business and pleasure aircraft.  Gnoss Field currently has one runway (Runway13/31) that is 3,300 feet long and 75 feet wide that serves the approximately 85,000 operations that occur at the Airport annually.

Purpose and Need

Marin County has prepared several evaluations of the Airport's operations and facilities. These studies identified the limitations regarding the Airport's ability to accommodate existing aircraft and aviation users for which the Airport was designed, and proposed an extension of Runway 13/31. On January 9, 2015, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) informed Marin County that an updated aviation forecast and a supplement to the June 2014 Final Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Proposed Extension of Runway 13/31, Gnoss Field Airport, Novato, Marin County, California, would be required for the proposed project to proceed.

A Gnoss Field Airport, Proposed Extension of Runway 13/31, Purpose and Need Working Paper was issued in May 2016 to provide additional information to the public and regulatory agencies regarding the proposed extension of Runway 13/31 at Gnoss Field Airport, Marin County, California. That Working Paper described a change in forecasted aviation activity at Gnoss Field Airport, including a revised purpose and need for a runway extension project resulting from a change in aviation activity, and provided supporting documentation. The FAA accepted public comments on the Purpose and Need Working Paper between May 2, 2016 and June 17, 2016, and held a public meeting to accept comments on the Working Paper on June 2, 2016. Additional copies of the Purpose and Need Working Paper, the Public Comments on the Purpose and Need Working Paper, and the June 2014 Final EIS are available for download by highlighting the titles of those documents in this sentence.

Many of the public commenters stated that the Working Paper underestimated aviation activity at Gnoss Field Airport, and stated that a longer runway length than identified in the Working Paper is necessary at the airport. The FAA is working with Marin County to have the EIS consultant develop an Updated Purpose and Need Working Paper to evaluate all public comments received on the first Purpose and Need Working Paper and address these concerns. The updated Purpose and Need Working Paper is currently in preparation with an estimated completion date of January 2018. When the Updated Purpose and Need Working Paper is issued for public comment, the public will also be advised of the meeting date for a public comment meeting on that document.

For further information you may contact:

Mr. Doug Pomeroy
Federal Aviation Administration
San Francisco Airports District Office
1000 Marina Boulevard, Suite 220
Brisbane, California 94005-1835. Telephone 650-827-7612 FAX 650-872-1430