Construction noise exemptions

General

In accordance with the N-200 Noise By-law, "no person shall engage in any activity that unreasonably disturbs or tends to disturb the peace and tranquillity of a neighbourhood."

The noise exemption process is comprised of three stages:

1. Noise Exemption - a plan for general onsite noise mitigation methods, and the foundation for the approval of future noise events.

2. Noise Event - the date and duration of the noise planned to be within a prohibited time.

3. Notice of Noise to Residents and Businesses - delivery of a written notice to neighbouring properties of the noise event.

How do I know if I need a Construction Noise Exemption?

The Noise By-law identifies the hours for which construction noise is not permitted. Construction noise within the prohibited hours requires a construction noise exemption. For example,  the prohibited times for concrete pouring and finishing, and associated activities are:

  • Weekdays from 8:00 p.m. to 7:00 a.m.,
  • Saturdays from 7:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m.,
  • Sundays and holidays from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 a.m.

How do I apply for a Construction Noise Exemption?

Construction noise exemptions may be granted where construction noise is planned to take place during the prohibited hours of the N-200 By-law.

A Construction Noise Exemption Application must be submitted in advance of anticipated construction and will be evaluated by the Municipality in coordination with the building permit review process. 

Exemption applications submitted after the commencement of construction may be considered, however, to accommodate the approval process and meet the notification requirements for a noise event, applications should be submitted as early as possible.

Once the noise exemption has been approved, and a planned noise event date has been identified, a Noise Event Request form shall be submitted to the Municipality a minimum of five (5) business days prior to the noise event. 

The applicant is required to complete the Notice of Noise to Residents & Businesses form, and hand deliver the notice to properties within thirty (30) meters of the construction site/noise event.

How do I find approved Construction Noise Exemptions?

All approved construction noise exemptions will be posted to the Approved Construction Noise Exemptions webpage. The page will show site-specific noise events and information.

Who do I contact if I have a question about construction noise or exemptions?

If you have a complaint regarding construction noise that is within the prohibited hours outlined in the N-200 By-law, please visit the Approved Construction Noise Exemption webpage for site-specific information and/or to verify if the construction site has an exemption.

You may submit a noise complaint or inquiry about noise exemptions to 311 and a staff member will investigate. 

Do I need to mitigate construction noise?

All construction sites should reduce their noise pollution by means of noise mitigation methods listed under the  Common Construction Noise Mitigation Methods for all Construction Sites.

A construction site requiring a noise exemption shall reduce its noise pollution by, but not limited to, the noise mitigation methods listed under the Construction Noise Exemption Mitigation Methods.

Common Construction Noise Mitigation Methods for all Construction Sites

Music

Avoid the use of radios and other broadcasting devices where neighbors could be affected.

Conversations

Avoid shouting and talking loudly.

Vehicles

Inform truck drivers of vehicle routes and parking locations. Minimizing the use of engine breaks and idling. Avoid slamming doors. Provide a turning radius to avoid the use of backup alarms.

Scheduling

Schedule noisy work when people will be less affected. Avoid noisy work in the mornings, evenings and holidays.

Maintaining Equipment

Maintain equipment and machinery to avoid unnecessary noise such as hissing, clicking, etc.

Site Assessment

Assess the surrounding areas which may be sensitive to noise such as hospitals, schools, etc. Apply noise mitigation methods and ensure equipment is placed furthest away from those areas. Avoid reflecting noise in the direction of the sensitive areas.

Site Awareness

Avoid dropping materials and equipment from height.

Construction Noise Exemption Mitigation Methods

Noise Exemption Plan

Identify types of noise during the Construction Noise Exemption Application. Create a plan to minimize the noise identified.

Exemption Estimate

Estimate the number of noise events expected per job. Try to schedule several noise events at once to minimize the number of disruptions.

Notification

Construction Noise Exemptions require owners to notify residents and businesses within 30m of the exempted site at least 48 hours prior to the noise event. Expand the notification areas where applicable (near open water, fields, dense population).

Employee Training

Train employees to understand noise mitigation and compliance with directions from management to minimize noise. Regularly train workers and contractors to use equipment in ways that minimize noise.

Responsibility of Managers

Site managers are to periodically visit the site, nearby residences and other sensitive receptors for noise issues. Create solutions in a timely manner.

Deliveries

Schedule deliveries and material drop-offs when people will be less affected. Avoid mornings, evenings and holidays.

Truck Routes

Plan after-hours truck routes to minimize disruption to residents.

Maintaining Equipment

Maintain and inspect all equipment, machinery and vehicles. Use lubrication, mufflers and other methods of sound dampening where applicable.

Choice of Technology

Use quieter technology or other mitigation measures rather than lengthening construction duration.

Sound Dampening

Use sound-dampening blankets, covers, panels and enclosures for equipment. (Accessory buildings, landforms, and stockpiles can be used as barriers)

Acoustic Sheds

Use barriers and acoustic sheds for small equipment.

Prefabrication

Prefabricate off-site when necessary.

Diesel Alternatives

Where possible, use an alternative to diesel equipment. (Gasoline, pneumatic equipment)

Concrete Scheduling

Concrete pours should be scheduled so the pour time does not start too late. Cut off time to start pouring is 11 am.

Concrete Cure Time

Decrease concrete cure time by adding admixtures or heat when available.

Concrete Pouring Area

Limit the amount of area of a concrete pour. Ensure you have enough time to work the concrete.