Local Politics

Bill would study noise walls along busy roadways

Posted May 28, 2008 6:35 p.m. EDT
Updated May 28, 2008 9:44 p.m. EDT

— A bill that the state House of Representatives is considering would direct the state Department of Transportation to study its policy for when to place sound walls along highways to reduce the impact of noise on neighborhoods.

House Bill 2730, sponsored by Rep. Ty Harrell, D-Wake, would require the DOT to tell lawmakers what it found, including what it would cost for any policy changes, by Oct. 1.

About 50 residents along the new N.C. Highway 540 have registered complaints with the state that the noise has increased significantly since the road opened last year. There is no barrier between it and the Harrington Pointe neighborhood near Leesville Road.

Lawmakers say there are similar problems across the state.

"It has residents in a bad situation," Harrell said. "When you have an existing neighborhood, and all of a sudden a road comes through and then it takes years, if at all, for some type of sound barrier to be put up – it doesn't have to be a brick wall, just something to dampen the noise."