Sound walls provide noise mitigation to properties abutting main roads and freeways.
VicRoads investigates traffic noise levels during road planning, and considers nearby homes, hospitals, motels, schools and libraries. If the limits of VicRoads’ Traffic Noise Reduction Policy are exceeded, noise reduction measures may be needed including low noise road surface, earth mounds or sound walls.
Who is responsible for delivering sound walls?
- When a new residential area abutting an existing freeway or main road is developed, it is usually the developer’s responsibility to construct a sound wall if one is needed
- When a freeway abutting a residential area is constructed or upgraded, it is usually the State Government’s responsibility to construct a sound wall if one is needed
What is Council doing about sound walls?
Melton City Council will continue to advocate for government investment along freeway corridors in the City of Melton, including through its Fix our Roads campaign.
Through this campaign, we are calling on the State and Federal governments to upgrade major roads including the Western Highway and Melton Highway. We expect that sound walls will be considered as part of any upgrades the State and Federal governments may make to these roads. You can find out more about this campaign and show your support at fixourroads.com.au
Silverdale Estate sound wall
Council issued a planning permit for the Silverdale Estate development in 2001. In response to residents’ concerns, Council engaged a consultant in 2018 to carry out a noise assessment which found that the sound wall was likely to cost about $2 million. Council committed to design the Silverdale Estate sound wall project in the 19/20 Council Budget process and allocated $100,000 of Council funds to undertake design and consultation. A further $2.1 million was allocated towards constructing the sound wall in the 2020/21 and 2021/22 financial years. Further scoping works have since found that the project would now cost an estimated $6.3 million to comply with Department of Transport standards for soundwalls within freeway corridors.
At its meeting on Monday 20 June 2022, Council decided to remove funding from its budget toward constructing a sound wall between the Western Highway and Silverdale Estate. In 2018, when Council made a decision to allocate $2.1 million towards the project, it did not foresee changes to Department of Transport requirements to build a sound wall which would change the cost to approximately $6.3 million. Council is not the responsible authority for building sound walls along freeways. Council is committed to advocating for government investment for soundwalls along freeway corridors in the City of Melton, including at Silverdale Estate, and at locations in Rockbank and Diggers Rest.