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Block 20 Pile Driving Ends: What’s next?

by Stan Penkin After four months of impact hammer pile driving at Block 20, neighbors are relieved that this activity is finally over. Thanks to the foundation contractor, DeWitt Construction, the noise impacts were diminished by utilizing a sound barrier shroud around the equipment and erecting an acoustical wall at the nearby elementary school. Decibel readings taken during the course of the work registered from 82 to 86. Readings taken during the Block 17 project that had last used the impact hammer registered as high as 110, a level known to be harmful to hearing. The city’s noise ordinance allows […]

Noise Review Impact Hammer

by Stan Penkin Noise Review Board Considers Action As the impact hammer pile driver reverberates throughout the North Pearl at Hoyt Street’s Block 20 project, the Noise Review Board (NRB) met on November 9th to discuss a proposal that would reduce the harmful effects of this antiquated method. With some 25 to 30 Pearl residents present to offer testimony and support, the board discussed its proposal to delete the exemption of impact hammer pile driving from the current construction noise ordinance and to provide that the use of this method come before the NRB for variance approval. This revision to […]

Noise Review Considers Pile Driving

Pile Driving Update: Noise Review Board Considers Action by Stan Penkin As the impact hammer pile driver reverberates throughout the North Pearl at Hoyt Street’s Block 20 project, the Noise Review Board (NRB) met on November 9th to discuss a proposal that would reduce the harmful effects of this antiquated method. With some 25 to 30 Pearl residents present to offer testimony and support, the board discussed its proposal to delete the exemption of impact hammer pile driving from the current construction noise ordinance and to provide that the use of this method come before the NRB for variance approval. This […]

Commissioner Fritz Declines to Move Forward with Noise Changes

by Stanley Penkin Proponents Express Disappointment Following the Noise Review Board’s (NRB) unanimous decision last month rejecting  pile driving noise policy changes proposed by Commissioner Amanda Fritz’s office, the Commissioner issued a letter to Noise Task Force members and interested parties that she will not pursue policy change. Although not bound by the NRB decision, the Commissioner stated, “I heard from both the Task Force and the Noise Review Board, as well as from the pile driver union members and representatives who attended the March Noise Review Board meeting, an overarching concern that a variance process would not deter the […]

Noise Review Board Rejects Pile Driving Policy Changes

A 4-0 vote Turns Down Commissioner Fritz’s Proposal by Stan Penkin In a surprising vote, the Noise Review Board on March 9th unanimously rejected a noise policy change proposed by Commissioner Amanda Fritz’s office. Following the creation of a citizen noise task force late last year, the group met six times to discuss issues including: a city wide prohibition of impact hammer pile driving; the variance appeal and notification process; and the variance fee structure. The Commissioner’s office took the task force discussions under advisement and presented its proposal that would mitigate noise issues, clarify the appeal process and set […]