General Aviation Improvement Program

Planning Process

The overall GAIP will be implemented in phases and is an extensive capital undertaking that will be completed over several years.

The phased program includes the following milestones:

Milestone Tentative Completion Date
Meet with general aviation users/stakeholders to solicit input Completed
Retain consultant support to conduct engineering/environmental review Completed
Conduct preliminary engineering and environmental analysis Completed
List of qualified FBOs approved by Board of Supervisors Completed
Draft EIR Public Review Completed
Present GAIP and EIR for Board of Supervisors approval Completed
Certification of Final EIR and supporting resolutions Completed
Request for Proposal issued for FBO leases Completed
Proposals due Completed
Airport Commission Meeting Completed
Board selection of preferred FBO Operators Completed
Negotiation of terms with selected FBOs Completed
Board award of leases to FBO Operators Completed
Construction plans and permitting 2021
General Aviation Improvement Program Implementation begins Post 2021

General Aviation Improvement Program (GAIP)

July 9, 2020 Update:
GAIP RFP Public Release of Documents

June 25, 2019 Update:
The Final Program Environmental Impact Report 627 was certified by the Orange County Board of Supervisors. The listed Draft documents now serve as Final Program EIR 627.

April 18, 2019 Update:
Updated Notice of Availability of Draft Program EIR 627 Responses to Comments and Announcement of Public Hearings

Final Program Environmental Impact Report 627 Response to Comments:

April 6, 2019:
Townhall Presentation with Agenda

November 2, 2018:
Notice of Comment Period Extension to November 21, 2018

Briefing for SoCal Pilots Association presentation (August 8, 2017)

September 26, 2018:
Public Meeting Presentation
DEIR Public Meeting Handout
DEIR Public Meeting Exhibits
DEIR Comment Card

September 20, 2018:
Notice of Availability of a Draft Program Environmental Impact Report and Announcement of Public Meeting

Please note that the listed DEIR documents now serve as Final Program EIR 627. The Draft Environmental Impact Report is available at the following link:


John Wayne Airport (JWA) is home base for nearly 500 private general aviation aircraft, including single- and multi-engine aircraft, corporate jets, helicopters and vintage biplanes. There are 379 County tie-down and hangar spaces for general aviation; fixed base operators (FBOs) provide additional tie-down and hangar spaces, as well as other aviation services. Overall, general aviation represents nearly 70% of the Airport's total number of operations. Click here for existing GA facilities.

Though general aviation accounts for the majority of JWA's total aircraft operations, over the past approximately 25 years, there has been an overall decline (- 19.2%) in general aviation aircraft based at JWA. Recently, JWA began a process of evaluating and planning for the future needs of the general aviation community at the Airport through a comprehensive General Aviation Improvement Program (GAIP). A number of factors led to the proposed comprehensive update of general aviation facilities including, but not limited to (1) the introduction of new aircraft into, and other changes within, the general aviation fleet; (2) the advanced age of some of JWA's general aviation structures and resultant need for improvements; (3) the need to ensure compliance with Federal Aviation Administration ("FAA") requirements related to proximity of buildings to taxiways and runways; and (4) the fact that a number of general aviation-related long-term leases have expired or are nearing expiration.

The General Aviation Improvement Program has established planning goals and objectives:

  1. Continue to provide safe and secure operations;
  2. Utilize limited land area efficiently and economically;
  3. Preserve compatibility between general and commercial aviation operations;
  4. Embrace flexibility to allow for technological advances and market trends;
  5. Maximize economic, self-sustaining, revenue producing facilities; and
  6. Assess the ability of existing infrastructure to support general aviation facilities


Environmental Review

The first step in the environmental review process is the issuance of a Notice of Preparation (NOP)/Initial Study. The NOP provides notification that an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) is being prepared. It includes a description of the project, as well as probable environmental effects to be analyzed in the EIR. The NOP review and comment period extended from March 30, 2017 to May 1, 2017. The NOP can be viewed on the JWA website at:

JWA hosted a scoping meeting in conjunction with the NOP comment period. This meeting was open to the public and took place on Wednesday, April 12, 2017, in the Airport Commission Room in JWA's Eddie Martin Administration Building located at 3160 Airway Avenue, Costa Mesa. This scoping meeting provided the opportunity for responsible agencies and the public to learn about the Project and then provide input on the scope of issues that the Project's EIR should analyze. Airport staff and the EIR consultants discussed the CEQA process and received public comments.

John Wayne Airport General Aviation Improvement Program Public Scoping Meeting presentation April 12, 2017.

Scoping Meeting Notice of Preparation of an Environmental Impact Report Handout April 12, 2017.

Orange County Airport Commission Presentation on Notice of Preparation (NOP) for General Aviation Improvement Program April 19, 2017.

A Draft Program Environmental Impact Report 627 (PEIR) was prepared.  The comments received during the NOP comment period were incorporated into the DEIR.

The Draft PEIR was distributed for a 45-day public review from September 20, 2018 to November 6, 2018.  Prior to the end of the Draft PEIR 627 public review period, the County received requests for a time extension.  The County extended the review period until November 21, 2019, resulting in a 60-day public review period.  During the public review period, a public meeting was held on September 26, 2018, at the JWA Administrative Offices in Costa Mesa to give the public an opportunity to provide input on the Draft PEIR and to ask questions about the GAIP.  Over 300 comments letters/cards/emails were received on the Draft PEIR.  All comments received during the DEIR public review period were included, and comments on substantive environmental issues were responded to in writing.  The responses to comments were distributed for public review and posted on the JWA website on April 9, 2019. They will be part of Final EIR 627.

UPDATE September 20, 2018: The Draft Environmental Impact Report is now available at the following link:

If you have questions or comments about the GAIP, please email or call Lea Choum at (949) 252-5123.

To learn more about the history of general aviation at JWA, visit

Quick Links:

Download brochure in pdf-format

John Wayne Airport NOTAMs

GA Noise Abatement

Noise Abatement Procedures

Emergency Medical Flights Form (pdf)

GA Noise Abatement


Noise Complaints:

John Wayne Airport
Access and Noise Office
(949) 252-5185

Fullerton Municipal Airport
Noise Complaints
(714) 738-6323

Los Alamitos Joint Forces Training Base
Noise Abatement Hotline
(562) 795-2573


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