Noisy vehicles, although not a safety issue, affect quality of life. Ensuring your vehicle does not make excessive noise makes you a good neighbour.
At the April 25, 2017, City Council meeting, the following motion was moved:
That Administration provide a report on the following:
- A list of known problem locations for excessive vehicle noise in Edmonton
- An assessment of existing data on the magnitude and impacts of excessive vehicle noise on residents and businesses, especially along stretches, including but not limited to Whyte Avenue and Jasper Avenue
- A summary of what actions are being currently undertaken to address excessive traffic noise, potential actions or countermeasures available beyond what is currently being done to address excessive traffic noise, within the existing budget, and return to Committee
As a result, administration and the Edmonton Police Service identified eighteen areas where the vehicle noise complaints are higher than normal. Upon further field review of these sites, four downtown locations were chosen to place noise monitoring systems. The screening locations were:
- 124 Street from Jasper Avenue to 118 Avenue
- Jasper Avenue from 109 Street to 124 Street
- Groat Road from Victoria Park Road to 107 Avenue
- 109 Street from Jasper Avenue to High Level Bridge
The goal of the trial was to determine the suitability of noise monitoring systems to detect, measure and identify vehicles making excessive noise. Further efforts were made to determine the best noise parameter to use for establishing the sound levels criteria. The results of the testing and answers to the questions posed at the April 25, 2017, City Council meeting were delivered to Council in CR_4772 Vehicle Noise Report.
The report conclusion stated “Should Committee request Administration pursue further work on excessive vehicle noise, the Traffic Safety section could extend its vehicle noise pilot project to include four units for detection and monitoring, and four units for educational feedback (like a Driver Feedback Sign for noise) in priority areas."
For the 2018 pilot, eight locations are collecting data to determine the suitability of noise monitoring systems to detect, measure and identify vehicles making excessive noise. Four locations have noise level display boards and four locations will capture video. The Council report on results will be delivered in November of 2018. The 2018 noise monitoring pilot screening areas are:
LED Display Board
- 124 Street from 118 Avenue to Jasper Avenue (display turned off)
- Victoria Park Road (display turned off)
- 99 Street between Whyte Avenue and Whitemud Drive (display turned off)
- Fort Road from 66 to 137 Avenue (display turned off)
Note that the display boards still collect noise data when the display is turned off.
- Jasper Avenue from 109 Street to 124 Street
- 114 Street south from 82 Avenue and into Belgravia
- Groat Road
- 137 Avenue between 97 Street and 127 Street
Note that this pilot will not extend beyond November and no enforcement is being done through this pilot.
How does noise monitoring equipment work?
Noise monitoring equipment is not radar based but works by measuring decibels of noise. With the equipment that can capture images, when the noise volume reaches a certain threshold, the camera is activated. The LED equipment also captures noise level information but does not capture images. However, the LED equipment can display decibel levels, but also captures noise level data even when the display is not activated.
When will automated noise enforcement start?
In November 2018, Council Committee will receive the noise monitoring report and decide next steps. The pilot project will confirm the feasibility of using automated noise detection equipment for the collection and possible prosecution of excessive vehicle noise. No tickets are being issued at this time. If the equipment proves suitable, and before enforcement can begin, City Council would need to approve the necessary bylaw followed by the purchase of equipment and set up of the program.
Where do I report excessive vehicle noise to get enforcement?
For enforcement, vehicle noise complaints should go to Edmonton Police Service. Phone 780-423-4567.
What happens if I report vehicle noise to the City?
Vehicle noise reports made to the City of Edmonton are collected for research purposes only and will not result in enforcement.
Report Vehicle Noise
Reporting vehicle noise will help the City determine how widespread the issue is and understand if certain characteristics make vehicle noise feel excessive.