Noise Abatement Program
Our approaches include:
- Ensuring that Australia's noise limits for new vehicles meet the latest European standards by working with the National Transport Commission and other States to produce Australian Design Rules for vehicle noise.
- Conducting assessments of road traffic noise for road projects and applying all feasible and reasonable noise mitigation measures to avoid or minimise noise, where noise exceeds criteria in the NSW Road Noise Policy.
- Administering the Noise Abatement Program to provide noise mitigation to locations where road traffic noise is high and no road development is taking place.
The Noise Abatement Program is aimed at providing noise mitigation treatment for dwellings and noise sensitive land-uses such as schools, hospitals and churches that are exposed to high levels of road traffic noise.
Access to the Noise Abatement Program is subject to certain eligibility criteria for registered applicants.
The eligibility criteria for the Noise Abatement Program are listed below and covered in more detail in the Noise Abatement Program application form (PDF, 425.23 KB) and frequently asked questions. All of the eligibility criteria must be met before a property can be placed on a waiting list for noise mitigation treatment:
- The property is classified as a 'sensitive receiver' - such as a residence, school, church or hospital.
- The property is impacted by noise from an existing State or Federal road and the road is not subject to any approved upgrades within a reasonably foreseeable time frame (eg 1-2 years).
- External noise levels are at least 65 decibels during the day or 60 decibels during the night at the property. (The daytime noise level is the average noise level between 7am and 10pm, and the night-time noise level is the average noise level between 10pm and 7am).
- Treatment of the property is deemed cost-effective, equitable and practical.
- Building development was approved before January 1, 2009.
Noise abatement treatment must be assessed as being feasible and reasonable using the process described in the 'Noise Mitigation Guideline'.
Residents with less than 7 years residency are offered architectural acoustic treatment to their property on a cost sharing basis. For example where length of residency is 1-2 years an 85 per cent contribution is sought from the resident, for 4-5 years residency the contribution is 35 per cent. For a residency of 7 years or more there is no contribution required for noise reduction treatment.
Noise mitigation measures will only be installed where they are expected to offer a noticeable reduction in the level of road traffic noise. For example, a reduction of 10 decibels can be equated to a halving in loudness, while a reduction of 2-3 decibels may not easily be heard.
Noise abatement for new developments in locations already exposed to road traffic noise is primarily the responsibility of the relevant developers. The State Environmental Planning Policy (infrastructure) 2007 at clause 102 sets out requirements for inclusion of noise mitigation measures in the design of new noise sensitive developments on land in or adjacent to the road corridor for a freeway, a tollway or a transitway or any other road with an annual average daily traffic volume of more than 20,000 vehicles.
Noise reduction treatment under the Noise Abatement Program is offered to eligible applicants only and based on the date of application to the Noise Abatement Program.
Applying for treatment
Residents who believe they are adversely affected by road traffic noise and are eligible can complete the Noise Abatement Program application form (PDF, 425.23 KB).
The application form is also available as a PDF download in Arabic (PDF, 201.19 KB), Simplified Chinese (PDF, 275.52 KB) and Traditional Chinese (PDF, 358.01 KB). Additional translations are available by calling 1800 570 829.
Alternatively, residents can call us on 1800 570 829 and ask to apply for the Noise Abatement Program over the phone, or email firstname.lastname@example.org
An application form and a further explanation of the program will be sent out. The application form enables residents to provide contact information and details regarding the noise issue at their residence. Transport for NSW will use this information to begin its investigation into whether treatment under the Noise Abatement Program is appropriate.
Overview of process
- Complete the Noise Abatement Program application form (PDF, 425.23 KB) and return it to Transport for NSW. The date of application is recorded by us.
- The application form will then be assessed against eligibility criteria and preliminary road traffic noise level checked by Transport for NSW.
- The preliminary check indicates eligible noise levels at an applicant’s property. An acoustic consultant is then retained by Transport NSW to undertake noise monitoring.
- The noise monitoring will confirm eligible noise levels. The location is registered as eligible under the Noise Abatement Program and assessed for feasibility and reasonableness of noise mitigation treatment.
- If architectural treatment is proposed, our specialist building consultant will discuss the scope of works with the resident and obtain agreement.
- The Deed of Release (1) is provided to the resident for signing and returned to Transport for NSW to allow a builder to enter property, install noise mitigation and to certify that no additional work will be provided by Transport for NSW.
- After Transport for NSW receives the signed Deed of Release, the builder will be commissioned by Transport NSW to undertake works.
- Works are inspected by our specialist building consultant to confirm that they comply with Building Code of Australia criteria.
(1) The Deed of Release will be provided by Transport NSW Services at this stage. If you would like to see a copy of a Deed of Release prior to this for your information, please contact us.
Frequently asked questions
What is the Noise Abatement Program?
The Noise Abatement Program addresses existing traffic noise impacts from State and Federal roads in NSW. The Noise Abatement Program is funded by the NSW Government and is delivered by Transport for NSW.
When will my property be treated?
A property is treated when an application for treatment has been accepted and has reached the top of the treatment list.
What kind of treatments are offered for noise abatement?
Architectural acoustic treatments are most commonly offered, other treatments can include noise barriers and noise mounds. The type of noise treatments chosen will depend on reasonable and feasible assessment.
What happens if this is offered?
The applicant will receive a letter from Transport for NSW offering acoustic treatment. To confirm the offer, simply contact the acoustic consultants listed in the letter to make an appointment to discuss recommendations on treatment.
What does the Noise Abatement Program do?
The Noise Abatement Program provides noise mitigation treatment for homes and places such as schools, hospitals and churches where there is very high traffic noise.
Why am I being offered this treatment?
Treatment is offered where an application for treatment has been accepted and has reached the top of the treatment list.
How does Transport NSW determine which treatments to use for my home?
- ease of construction
- extent of noise benefit
- preference of the occupant.
Would acoustic treatment change the look of my property?
No. Acoustic treatment is done in consultation with you and can match the look and style of your residence.
How long would it take to treat my home?
Whilst each home is different, the treatment usually takes a few days to complete.
Is there a cost for this work?
Treatment is free to the property owner if they have owned their home for 7 years or more. If you have been living in your home less than 7 years you will need to pay a contribution towards the cost as per below:
Length of ownership - Cost of contribution by owner
- 1 year - 85%
- 2 years - 70%
- 3 years - 55%
- 4 years - 35%
- 5 years - 20%
- 6 years - 10%
- 7 years or more - 0%
How much is the maximum amount that could be spent on treating my property?
The value of treatment under the Noise Abatement Program is limited to no more than $30,000 for any one property.
Will the work be guaranteed?
The contractor who does the work provides a 7 year warranty on workmanship and 5 year warranty on parts and labour.
Can Noise Abatement Program treatment be brought forward?
Unfortunately treatments cannot be accelerated or brought forward because they are determined based on the application date on which they were received. The application date is the date Transport for NSW receives the completed NAP Application Form. If treatments are brought forward then other people who are on the program will have their noise treatments delayed.