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The importance of construction site fencing for noise barrier

According to the City of Toronto, construction site noise has been one of the main sources of noise complaints in Toronto[1]. It is well known that noise can have a disruptive effect on the neighborhood and, in time, noise complaints can damage good relationships with the community or surrounding mall tenants.  The following video shows why construction site fencing for a noise barrier is an important aspect in noise management.

Although construction is permitted during 7AM to 7PM from Monday to Friday and between 9AM to 7PM on Saturday[2], certain measures can be taken during construction work hours to reduce noise. Our best advice is to be proactive about noise management before it becomes an inconvenience to the neighborhood.

An effective method to control noise at the construction site is to use construction site fencing or hoarding with added soundproofing panels as a noise barrier. In the case of environmental hoarding, the soundproof panels are applied to the back of the hoarding panels and reduce the noise by 16.5 decibels (for a standard 300 Hz sound).

In fact, the Laborers’ Health and Safety Fund of North America recommends adding a distance of 5 to 40 feet between the noise source and noise receiver, as distance also counts as a noise barrier. The table below shows that if the distance from the noise source increases, the noise also decreases[3].  Placing noisy equipment behind construction hoarding and allowing a safe space between the barrier and the exterior environment is an effective tactic to reduce noise.

Decibel level at noise source (dB) Distance from noise receiver to noise source (feet) Decibel level at noise receiver (dB)
105 5 102
105 10 96
105 20 90
105 40 84

Table source: Best Practice Guide to Noise Control by the: Laborers’ Health and Safety Fund of North America

Sound barriers are an effective method in noise management and work best when paired with other best practices such as purchasing quieter equipment, effective work activity scheduling, working within the city’s allowed construction hours, and being proactive about equipment repair and maintenance. Most importantly, communication is key. While construction site noise cannot be eliminated, communicating with the residents and other tenants is crucial to increasing tolerance and goodwill.

To see how Greenloc Environmental hoarding can help reduce construction site noise, contact us at info@greenloc.ca or fill out the form below.

[1] Noise complaints in Toronto: https://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=a2902894d6821410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD&vgnextchannel=2e4732e2e7741410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD

[2] Construction working hours in Toronto:

https://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=a2902894d6821410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD&vgnextchannel=2e4732e2e7741410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD

[3] Best Practice Guide to Noise Control by the: Laborers’ Health and Safety Fund of North America

https://www.lhsfna.org/LHSFNA/assets/File/bpguide%202014.pdf

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