DAR File No. 42009
This rule was published in the September 1, 2017, issue (Vol. 2017, No. 17) of the Utah State Bulletin.
Highway Noise Abatement
Notice of Proposed Rule
DAR File No.: 42009
Filed: 08/11/2017 01:57:47 PM
Purpose of the rule or reason for the change:
The purpose of this rule is to allow the Department of Transportation to address highway noise impacts and to determine the conditions under which noise abatement may be approved. The Department has determined the rule must be amended because changes are needed for clarity and to provide the public with greater opportunity for noise abatement.
Summary of the rule or change:
Conditions that must exist before the Department will install noise abatement devices are changed to provide the public with greater opportunity for noise abatement.
Statutory or constitutional authorization for this rule:
- Section 72-1-201
- Section 72-7-101
- Section 72-6-111
Anticipated cost or savings to:
the state budget:
The Department does not anticipate that this amendment to the rule will result in any additional cost or a saving to the state's budget. It is a minor change that accommodates public efforts to seek noise abatement. The amendment may result in additional cost to the Department, but those additional costs will be de minimus and will likely be offset by savings due to decreased complaints.
The Department does not anticipate that this amendment to the rule will result in any additional cost or a saving to the budgets of local governments. The amendment does not apply to local governments and should not affect their budgets in any way.
The Department does not anticipate that this amendment to the rule will result in any additional cost or a saving to the budgets of small businesses. The amendment is focused on assisting the public as a whole and not small businesses specifically, and should not affect their budgets in any way.
persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local governmental entities:
The Department does not anticipate that this amendment to the rule will result in any additional cost or a saving to the budgets of persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local government entities. The amendment is focused on providing a benefit for the public as a whole and, and should not affect the budgets of persons other than small businesses, businesses, or local government entities in any way.
Compliance costs for affected persons:
Affected persons should benefit from this amendment to the rule by providing all persons with greater opportunity for noise abatement. The amendment should result in no cost whatsoever for affected persons.
Comments by the department head on the fiscal impact the rule may have on businesses:
This rule amendment will have no fiscal impact on businesses.
Carlos Braceras, Executive Director
The full text of this rule may be inspected, during regular business hours, at the Office of Administrative Rules, or at:Transportation
CALVIN L RAMPTON COMPLEX
4501 S 2700 W
SALT LAKE CITY, UT 84119-5998
Direct questions regarding this rule to:
- Christine Newman at the above address, by phone at 801-965-4026, by FAX at 801-965-4338, or by Internet E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
- James Palmer at the above address, by phone at 801-965-4000, by FAX at 801-965-4338, or by Internet E-mail at email@example.com
- Linda Hull at the above address, by phone at 801-965-4253, by FAX at , or by Internet E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
Interested persons may present their views on this rule by submitting written comments to the address above no later than 5:00 p.m. on:
This rule may become effective on:
Carlos Braceras, Executive Director
R930. Transportation, Preconstruction.
R930-3. Highway Noise Abatement.
R930-3-1. Purpose and Authority.
The purpose of this rule is to allow UDOT to address highway noise impacts and to determine the conditions under which noise abatement may be approved. This rule is authorized by the grant of rulemaking authority found in Section 72-6-111. This rule is consistent with the Federal Highway Administration's Procedures for Abatement of Highway Traffic Noise and Construction Noise, 23 CFR 772 (April 1, 2011), which is hereby adopted and incorporated by reference.
(1) "Existing Noise Level" means the noise level, Leq, resulting from the natural and mechanical sources and human activity, considered to be usually present in a particular area.
(2) "Design Noise Level" means the noise level, Leq, calculated for the worst traffic noise conditions likely to occur on a regular basis using a method approved by FHWA.
(3) "Type I Project" means a highway construction project that is related to an increase in traffic noise - construction of a highway on new location or the physical alteration of an existing highway which substantially changes the alignment or increases the number of through-traffic lanes or the addition of auxiliary lanes or interchange ramps.
(4) "Type II Project" means a proposed highway project strictly for noise abatement on an existing highway.
(5) "Type III Project" means a project that does
not meet the classification of a Type I project or a Type II
project. Type III projects do not require a noise
6]) "UDOT" means Utah Department of
7]) "FHWA" means Federal Highway
8]) "dBA" means decibels of sound expressed or
measured using the "A" weighting scale of a
sound-pressure level meter.
9]) "Leq" means the equivalent (average) sound
level reported in units of dBA.
10]) "AASHTO" means American Association of State
Highway and Transportation Officials.
(1) Type I Projects. Noise abatement shall be considered for Type I projects where noise impacts are identified. A new or proposed subdivision or other development must have a formal building permit before the issuance of the final environmental decision document to be considered for noise abatement.
(2) Type II Projects. UDOT does not provide a noise retrofit (Type II) program to construct noise abatement measures along existing state transportation facilities.
R930-3-4. Noise Impact Determination.
A traffic noise impact occurs, for purposes of this policy, when either of the following conditions exists at a sensitive land use:
(1) The design noise level is greater than or equal to the UDOT Noise Abatement Criterion (NAC) in Table 1 for each corresponding land use category; or
(2) The design noise level substantially exceeds (ten dBA or more) the existing noise level.
R930-3-5. Noise Abatement Objective.
When noise abatement measures are being considered, every reasonable effort shall be made to obtain substantial noise reductions consistent with Department procedures.
R930-3-6. Noise Abatement Conditions.
In order to be considered for noise abatement, all of the following conditions must be met:
A n]oise abatement [ device ]shall not be installed where it will
create a hazard or violate design standards. Specifically, noise
abatement walls shall not be added within the highway clear zone as
defined in the AASHTO Roadside Design Guide[ , unless a safety barrier already exists];
(2) At least [
eight] dBA of noise reduction must be achievable at [ impacted] receptors[ nearest the highway]; and
(3) Noise abatement measures must be cost effective.
(a) For residential areas (Category B,
Table 1), Cost effectiveness is based on the cost of abatement
divided by the number of benefited receptors. Benefited receptors
must be considered in determining a noise barrier's cost per
receptor regardless of whether or not they were identified as
impacted. A benefited receptor is any impacted or non-impacted
receptor that gets a noise reduction of [
dBA or more as a result of the noise barrier. The maximum
cost used to determine reasonableness to provide noise abatement is
listed in the Noise Abatement Procedures. This cost may be
periodically reviewed by the Department for reasonableness and
updated, as needed.
(b) For non-residential areas (Category A, C, D or E, Table 1): Cost effectiveness depends on the height of noise wall required and corresponding length of frontage. In any case, a reasonable cost for noise abatement will not exceed the cost effectiveness criteria listed in the Noise Abatement Procedures section of the UDOT Noise Policy.
R930-3-7. Declaration of Intent.
Environmental study documents will indicate those areas where noise impacts are projected and areas where abatement appears reasonable and feasible. A final decision on the installation of abatement measures will be made after completing final design and the balloting process.
R930-3-8. Public Involvement.
(1) As part of the final design phase of projects, the Department needs to establish whether property owners and residents are in favor of noise abatement measures. This process involves sending ballots to the following groups so they can indicate their preference for or against noise abatement measures:
(a) All benefited receptors (property
owners and residents/renters). A benefited receptor is one that
would receive a reduction of [
8] dBA or more as a result of noise abatement; and
(b) Receptors that border [
and] are directly adjacent to the end of a proposed noise wall
that are not, by definition, benefited by the wall.
(2) The number of votes is established as follows:
(a) Owner occupied residences: The owner will have 1 vote.
(b) Rental homes, multi-family residences and apartments: The owner will have 1 vote per unit and the resident/renter will have 1 vote for the unit.
(c) Day care centers, hospitals, libraries, medical facilities, parks, picnic areas, places of worship, playgrounds, public meeting rooms, public or nonprofit institutional structures: The owner will have 1 vote.
(d) Commercial/industrial businesses: The owner will have 1 vote for the unit and, if applicable, the tenant will have 1 vote for the unit.
(e) Mobile home parks: The mobile home owner will have 1 vote. The lot owner, if different than the home owner, will have 1 vote.
3]) Assessing ballots - When votes are counted, property
owners' votes will receive a multiplier factor of 5 compared to
residents (non-owners) factor of 1.
(a) Noise abatement will only be
recommended if 75[
of votes counted, favor noise abatement. The
denominator used to calculate this percentage will equal the total
number of votes. In addition, at least [ 50%] of the total number of completed ballots must be
returned to adequately assess if noise abatement measures are
desired. If less than [ 50] percent of ballots are returned after balloting efforts
are completed, then noise abatement measures will be deemed not
(b) Ballots sent by mail are deemed by the Department as "due diligence" in notifying the affected property owners and residents/renters of possible noise mitigation measures in their area. Ballots will be sent by regular mail to each property owner of record and each residing household/resident. Each ballot will include a deadline for return to the Department. For ballots sent but not received by the deadline, a second ballot will be sent by Registered Mail to those who have not returned a ballot.
(c) If the voting process results in a decision not to construct noise abatement, the area will not be considered for noise abatement unless a future transportation project falls under the guidelines of a Type I Project.
R930-3-9. Coordination with Local Officials.
For Type I Projects, the Department will inform local officials of noise compatible planning concepts and an estimate of future noise levels on undeveloped lands or properties within the project limits.
R930-3-10. Local Government Participation.
In instances where noise abatement has already been deemed feasible and reasonable, a third party such as a local municipality, may contribute funds to make functional or aesthetic enhancements to a noise abatement feature.
R930-3-11. Projects Funded From Other Sources.
The Utah Code authorizes the Department to
construct and maintain noise abatement measures along state
highways in cases where the cost for the noise abatement is
provided by citizens, adjacent property owners, developers, or
local governments, and meeting other established criteria. These
cases may be treated as a special application of Paragraph
R930-3-10, in which the Department may design, build, and maintain
the abatement measure, and the local government agency shall pay
the Department for all preliminary engineering [
and ]construction costs.
R930-3-12. Construction Off Right-of-Way.
barriers (walls or berms)] built pursuant to this
rule will be constructed within Department right-of-way and owned
and maintained by the Department. There are cases in which
Department right-of-way is not the most prudent location for noise
barriers, yet noise abatement [ can be very] feasible and reasonable if built on adjacent
property or adjacent public right-of-way. In these cases:
(1) The Department's cost is limited to normal cost for abatement on Department right-of-way.
(2) In no case shall the Department construct a noise barrier unless the adjacent property owners allow access and easements as necessary in order to construct and maintain the barrier.
TABLE 1- UDOT Noise Abatement Criteria (NAC)
(Hourly A- Weighted Sound Level decibels (dB(A)))
Activity UDOT Evaluation Activity
Category Criteria(1) Location Description
A 56 Exterior Lands on which serenity and
quiet are of extraordinary
significance and serve an
important public need and
where the preservation of
those qualities is essential
if the area is to continue to
serve its intended purpose.
B 66 Exterior Residential
C 66 Exterior Active sports areas,
campgrounds, cemeteries, day
care centers, hospitals,
libraries, medical facilities,
parks, picnic areas, places of
worship, playgrounds, public
meeting rooms, public or
structures, radio studios,
recording studios, recreation
areas, Section 4(f) sites,
schools, television studios,
trails and trail crossings.
D 51 Interior Auditoriums, day care centers,
hospitals, libraries, medical
facilities, places of worship,
public meeting rooms, public
or nonprofit institutional
structures, radio studios,
recording studios, schools,
and television studios.
E 71 Exterior Hotels, motels, offices,
restaurants/bars, and other
developed lands, properties or
activities not included in A-D
F No Limit - Agriculture, airports, bus
yards, emergency services,
manufacturing, mining, rail
yards, retail facilities,
shipyards, utilities (water
resources, water treatment,
electrical), and warehousing.
G No Limit - Undeveloped lands that are not
(1) Hourly A-weighted sound level in decibels reflecting a
1 dBA "approach" value below 23 CFR 772 values
KEY: transportation, barrier , traffic noise abatement, highways
Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: [
February 7, 2012]
Notice of Continuation: October 25, 2016
Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted Law: 72-1-201; 72-7-101; 72-6-111
More information about a Notice of Proposed Rule is available online.
The Portable Document Format (PDF) version of the Bulletin is the official version. The PDF version of this issue is available at https://rules.utah.gov/publicat/bull_pdf/2017/b20170901.pdf. The HTML edition of the Bulletin is a convenience copy. Any discrepancy between the PDF version and HTML version is resolved in favor of the PDF version.
Text to be deleted is struck through and surrounded by brackets ([
example]). Text to be added is underlined (). Older browsers may not depict some or any of these attributes on the screen or when the document is printed.
For questions regarding the content or application of this rule, please contact Christine Newman at the above address, by phone at 801-965-4026, by FAX at 801-965-4338, or by Internet E-mail at email@example.com; James Palmer at the above address, by phone at 801-965-4000, by FAX at 801-965-4338, or by Internet E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org; Linda Hull at the above address, by phone at 801-965-4253, by FAX at , or by Internet E-mail at email@example.com. For questions about the rulemaking process, please contact the Office of Administrative Rules.