Update to the Environmental Guide for Noise

ERO number
Notice type
Posted by
Ministry of Transportation
Notice stage
Proposal posted
Comment period
August 12, 2021 - September 26, 2021 (45 days) Open
Last updated

This consultation closes at 11:59 p.m. on:
September 26, 2021

Proposal summary

We are updating an environmental guide that outlines noise impact assessments related to provincial transportation projects. Proposed updates include updated noise models, guidance in approach to municipal noise by-laws, updated definition of Noise Sensitive Areas and new requirements for assessing pavement types in certain situations.

Proposal details

The Ministry of Transportation (MTO) is responsible for identifying and assessing the noise impacts on the local area due to its proposed transportation projects.

The Environmental Guide for Noise (the “Guide”) was developed in October 2006 to provide a standardized approach for the assessment and mitigation of noise associated with MTO projects. The Guide is being updated to align with current MTO processes and industry best practices.

Based on MTO’s experience in applying the Guide through various projects since the original version of the Guide and more modern noise modeling software that is now readily available, MTO is proposing several updates to the Guide.

Highlights of the proposed updates include:

  • clarification of when a noise study is recommended
  • the use of Traffic Noise Model (TNM) as the recommended noise model for transportation projects
  • a new requirement where a noise impact study must be considered for resurfacing projects in which the pavement material will change from asphalt to concrete
  • a new requirement where a noise impact study must be considered when posted speed limits are increased
  • a new requirement where the noise impact study must run both an asphalt and concrete surface scenario when final pavement types are not yet known at the time of assessment
  • clarity and example of how to approach noise barrier feasibility assessments
  • revised definition of Noise Sensitive Areas to include community centres, municipal parks and places of worship under certain conditions
  • revisions for clarity, including the inclusion of examples

Supporting materials

View materials in person

Important notice: Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, viewing supporting materials in person is not available at this time.

Please reach out to the Contact listed in this notice to see if alternate arrangements can be made.

Ministry of Transportation - Environmental Policy Office

777 Bay Street
Suite 700
Toronto, ON
M7A 2J8


Let us know what you think of our proposal.

Have questions? Get in touch with the contact person below. Please include the ERO number for this notice in your email or letter to the contact.

Read our commenting and privacy policies.

Submit online

Submit by mail


Connect with us


Sign up for notifications

We will send you email notifications with any updates related to this consultation. You can change your notification preferences anytime by visiting settings in your profile page.

Follow this notice