East Vancouver Port Lands Noise Study

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The residents of East Vancouver’s “Burrardview” neighbourhood have for many decades been exposed to noise from trucking, rail operations and port-related activities at the East Vancouver Port Lands along the southern shore of Burrard Inlet. Growth in multi-modal freight volumes due to expanded Pacific Rim trade and the then-planned expansion of port operating hours, had focused neighbourhood concerns and prompted the Vancouver Port Corporation (now Port Metro Vancouver) to retain Wakefield Acoustics Ltd. to conduct a noise study within Burrardview. Extensive attended and unattended noise monitoring was employed to document community noise exposures, establish the proportions of these exposures that were due to port operations and to identify and quantify prominent sources of intermittent and intrusive noise events such as train whistles, rail car shunting impacts, idling locomotives and trucking. Mitigation options were presented and, in a detailed follow-up study, Wakefield Acoustics Ltd. developed a three-dimensional model of the port/residential boundary area and evaluated the effectiveness of various noise barrier concepts in reducing community exposures to noise from rail operations and trucking.