The Monash Freeway Upgrade project team works hard to reduce the impacts associated with major construction works on its surrounding communities.
Noise and vibration disturbances are an unavoidable occurrence when constructing major civil works, including those involved with the Monash Freeway Upgrade. We manage the works to reduce these disturbances as much as possible. Noise and vibration impacts will vary depending on the activities being undertaken.
Some of the main sources of noise and vibration include:
- Excavators and graders breaking ground
- Profilers stripping pavement
- Laying asphalt
- Noise from trucks delivering materials
- Generators and power tools
- Piling rigs and cranes
- Rollers compacting soil and rock
- Reversing alarms on mobile equipment.
Noise during construction
Noise management is a critical part of planning and design, both during construction and once the Monash Freeway Upgrade is complete. A number of regulatory requirements are in place to protect the local community and ensure that any unavoidable effects are well managed.
To reduce the impact of construction activities that can generate noise, works are conducted during the day wherever possible. Where this is not possible, for example for safety reasons, all care will be taken to ensure noise is minimised. For more information about noise levels during construction, refer to the EPA Victoria Environmental guidelines for major construction sites (publication 480).
Noise modelling undertaken as part of the planning and design process indicates only a very localised area is projected to require additional noise barriers, with the majority of the corridor falling within the allowable noise limits prescribed by the VicRoads Traffic Noise Reduction Policy (2005). These figures are based on predicted traffic volumes to the year 2031. Therefore, noise treatments do not constitute a significant portion of work for the project.
The one exception for this is the noise wall adjacent to the Heatherton Road off ramp, which is in need of repair and lengthening. In this section, the easternmost 70m of existing noise wall, which is in poor condition, is to be replaced with a similar barrier at the same height, with an additional similar section of 200m added, offset from the existing barrier to permit access for maintenance.
Read more: VicRoads Traffic Noise Reduction Policy 2005
Vibration during construction
During the widening of the Monash Freeway, there are a number of activities that can cause ground vibration. These activities include bridge strengthening and piling works, asphalt rolling and the movement of trucks. The levels of vibration and impacts on surrounding buildings depend on ground conditions transmitting the vibration and on the distance of works to buildings.
In some cases residents may feel vibration as a result of works. We are able to perceive vibration at lower levels than are necessary to cause any damage. Construction activities will be monitored where necessary or mitigated to prevent damage occurring.
Measures to reduce effects
To minimise and manage the effect of noise and vibration, we:
- Schedule noise-generating activities within daytime working hours wherever possible
- Use broadband reversing alarms on mobile machinery and equipment. These alarms are quieter than the standard reversing beepers used on most construction sites
- Inform those likely to be affected by noisy works prior to works commencing
- Undertake property condition surveys on residences located along the work zones before construction begins
- Arrange loading activities to avoid reversing where practicable, reducing the use of reversing beepers
- Regularly maintain all plant and machinery to ensure optimal performance and use quieter equipment where possible
- Establish and maintain safe buffer distances between equipment and residences
- Monitor noise and vibration during construction to ensure its compliance.
If you are concerned about the level of vibration in your house as a result of construction or if noise is above what would be considered reasonable, please call us on 1300 280 939.
For more information, download our fact sheet on Managing noise and vibration during construction [PDF, 536KB]