A comprehensive review of the state-of-the-art in traffic noise abatement was conducted. Key literature was reviewed, and surveys conducted with state DOT noise analysts, and local environment noise control programs, and vehicle manufacturers. Areas of interest included abatement strategies, effective vehicle noise control, land use compatibility programs, and programmatic and administrative issues.
Findings included the following:
(1) the demand for noise abatement is increasing;
(2) state DOTs need better sources of funds for retrofit ("Type II") noise barrier programs;
(3) state and local noise control programs have suffered greatly since the end of the USEPA noise program in 1982;
(4) truck manufacturers in the U.S. and Europe are successfully meeting the newly manufactured vehicle noise standards in their respective areas.
Current Washington initiatives were also examined. WSDOT has included noise abatement as a priority area in its 1991 Transportation Policy Plan and the legislature developed a Growth Management Act and Growth Strategies Act that calls for comprehensive land use plan development by cities and counties. Recommendations to WSDOT included the need for expanded staff, a dedicated source of funds for a phased retrofit abatement program and active involvement in implementation of the two growth acts.