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Wildwood to study noise levels on arterial roadways

Intersection of Hwy. 100 and Hwy. 109
A roundabout at the intersection of Hwy. 100 and Hwy. 109 in Wildwood. (Source: Google Earth)

The city of Wildwood passed a resolution at the March 22 City Council meeting to hire Dr. Tom Thunder of Acoustic Associates, Ltd. in an amount not to exceed $12,500 to study current noise levels along Hwy. 100 and portions of Hwy. 109 to provide possible mitigation solutions.

The Planning and Parks Committee has considered sound and noise related items for about a year. At the March 16 meeting, committee members discussed issues relating to the intersection of Hwy. 100 and Hwy. 109, the impact of the installation of roundabouts, and the timeframes when sound levels are at their peaks.

“As traffic has increased, there’s been a corresponding increase in noise associated with these corridors,” Joe Vujnich, director of planning, said. “It is impacting their quality of life, particularly when outdoors.”

Council member Joe Garritano (Ward 8) also said he has received complaints about the noise from the roadways from residents for years, particularly from individuals in the Cambury neighborhood in Ward 8, which sits near the intersection of Hwy. 100 and Hwy. 109.

While complaints have been made about the noise over the past two to three years, according to Garritano, the resolution was brought before the city council because residents at multiple ward meetings had brought the issue to attention, particularly in wards 5 and 8.

The resolution cited the planned growth that has occurred in areas around Wildwood as part of the reason for he increased traffic volumes have increased, and as a result, an increase in documented noise from roadways near residences.

According to Garritano, there has been as many as 500 new homes recently added around the Town Center corridor.

“I think this drum beat of noise is getting louder and louder,” Garritano said.

As part of the study, Acoustic Associates will install monitoring equipment, complete a drone flight for field verification purposes and ensure information was accurately collected.

The consulting firm will generate a table giving the daytime and nighttime sound levels at a dozen locations around Hwy. 100, especially close to Taylor Road. Also as part of the test, a return trip will be made to the fishery located on Wild Horse Creek Road since its aerators have been replaced to obtain a nighttime sample.

“A key component will be the recommendation is to mitigate areas that are over the appropriate noise levels,” Vujnich said.

Once a template has been developed from the initial investigation, other major arterial roadways will be addressed, he said.

The city council voted to approve the contract with Acoustic Associates at the March 22 meeting.

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