Trans Mountain is taking an innovative approach to help reduce noise from pile driving activities for construction at Westridge Marine Terminal as part of the Trans Mountain Expansion Project.

Contractors for the expansion of Westridge will be using ‘noise shrouds’ to cover the hammers that drive piles into the ocean floor for the new marine terminal in the Burrard Inlet. The shrouds, which are about two stories tall and wide enough to hold a medium-sized SUV, dampen the sound of hammer impact.

The noise shrouds are being sourced from a company based in Germany specifically for the Trans Mountain project and are designed to fit the hammers that drive the piles. This technique has been used in other ports around the world, but to our knowledge it’s the first time this equipment has been deployed for a piling project in the Vancouver Port, notes Randy Brake, TMEP Project Director for the Lower Mainland.

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The shrouds are just one of the measures that will be employed to help minimize construction noise related to pile driving activities at Westridge. Activities will also be sequenced to minimize the use of the hammer, which will only be used once the piles reach till.

Use of the shrouds will help Trans Mountain meet National Energy Board Condition 80, which addresses pile driver noise mitigation. It’s estimated that with the use of these shrouds, sound levels from pile driving at Westridge will meet desired noise target levels set out by the BC Oil and Gas Commission’s Noise Control Best Practices Guidelines and Health Canada’s Noise Guidance.

Kinder Morgan Canada Ltd. (KML) has issued letters to Burnaby and North Vancouver residents and businesses within two kilometres of Westridge, inviting comment on KML’s application to the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority for the planned marine terminal expansion. The comment period closes Monday, July 10, 2017.

Construction is expected to take approximately two and a half years, beginning in the fall of 2017 until spring 2020. The proposed foreshore work, near shore work and berth 1 and 2 would be completed first (end of 2019), followed by berth 3 (spring 2020).

More information on KML’s application, including the Noise Management Plan, can be found here.

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