Soundwalls: Process, Benefits and Drawbacks to be Topics of a September Community Meeting

Friday, July 6, 2012

During 2010 and 2011, the city of Oakland developed a ranked list of projects funded with the $8 million Caltrans paid Oakland in a settlement reached over the adequacy of environmental reports which studied effects on the neighborhood of the Caldecott Tunnel's fourth bore construction.

The final list of 37 projects is available online at http://tinyurl.com/7na7jhj. Twenty-one projects totaling $8 million are "above the line," meaning they receive first consideration for the money. The line was established during several community meetings when participants ranked suggested projects in terms of their importance to community safety and improvement.

Soundwall studies were placed on the city's list due to the higher freeway noise levels anticipated after the Fourth Bore is opened and to current noise levels measured in the December 2009 pre-NBSSR study. The three "above the line" Rockridge soundwall segments are indicated on the above graphic. Note their location in terms of schools, the park, and other public uses. All segments can be found here: http://tinyurl.com/8yc6hoq.

The next step in evaluating support in the neighborhood for soundwalls is through property owners' petitions for the NBSSR studies. Information on the petition process, the overall soundwall approval and construction process, and on properties of soundwalls will be presented at a public meeting scheduled Thursday, September 27, 7-9 p.m. at the Rockridge Library. Your participation is important to the process.