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Noise, vibrations and air quality during construction

The construction of the REM must adhere to noise and air quality criteria. Set by government authorities, these criteria are subject to rigorous environmental monitoring.

Noise during construction

How noise is measured  

Sound intensity is measured in decibels or adjusted decibels (dB or dBA). This is a logarithmic scale. For example, an increase of 3 dBA is only slightly perceptible to the human ear, while an increase of 10 dBA is perceived as twice the initial noise level. 

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0 dBA 40 dBA 60 dBA 80 dBA 140 dBA
Threshold of audible sound  Quiet room  Normal conversation  Conversation is difficult; very loud  Intolerable sound level (e.g. jet take-off at < 30 m) 

 

Known sounds in our environment and dBA levels

How is the impact of sound during construction measured?  

During the construction phase, some work may generate noise. NouvLR, the consortium in charge of building the REM, is required to comply with noise management requirements. 

Here are the noise thresholds to comply with, based on the type of work done: 

Fixed site work (construction of stations and related infrastructure)

 

Daytime (7 am to 7 pm)

Average over a 12-hour period   

Evening (7 p.m. to 10 p.m.)

Average over a 1 hour period   

Night (10 pm to 7 am)

Average over a 1 hour period   

           55 dBA or pre-work ambient noise                       55 dBA or pre-work ambient noise                       45 dBA or pre-work ambient noise           

Linear works (construction of railway and road axes)

 

Noise criteria (in dBA)
Zone and land use Day (7 a.m. to 7 p.m.) Evening (7 p.m. to 11 p.m.) Night (11 p.m. to 7 a.m.)
Criterion (L10, 30 min, dBA) Maximum peak (LAFmax) Criterion (L10, 30 min, dBA) Maximum peak (LAFmax) Criterion (L10, 30 min, dBA) Maximum peak (LAFmax)
Noise sensitive zones 75 or ambient noise +5 85 or 90 pour un bruit d'impact Ambient noise + 5 85 Ambient noise + 5 (if ambient noise smaller than 70) or Ambient noise + 3 (if ambient noise greater than 70) 80
Commercial zones 80 or ambient noise + 5 None Ambient noise + 5 None None None
Industrial zone 85 or ambient noise + 5 None None None None None

 

Mitigation measures    

The REM project office and NouvLR are implementing measures to minimize noise during the work. These measures are adjusted continuously based on the work done and the sectors. Here are some examples:    

  • Using silencers on equipment 
  • Using temporary acoustic barriers 
  • Continuously raising workers’ awareness 
  • Noise monitoring and follow-up program, including a team of dedicated supervisors 
  • A rigorous complaint management procedure 

Want to find out more about noise? 

Fact sheet on noise during construction

For more information about noise levels during the REM’s construction, consult the fact sheet. 

Consult the fact sheet

Air quality during construction

How is the impact of air quality during construction measured?  

 

The work is subject to standards regarding total particles and fine particles (PM2.5) set forth in the Clean Air Regulation. The standards are 120 µg/m3 over 24 hours for total particles, and 30 µg/m3 over 24 hours for fine particles. 

 

Mitigation measures 

Mitigation measures are planned to limit the spread of dust, including: 

 

  • Using a dust suppressant 
  • Cleaning up public roads 
  • Using tarps on dump trucks and material piles 

Vibrations during construction

During the construction phase, some work may generate vibrations, primarily: 

  • Controlled blasting operations 
  • Heavy machinery traffic  
  • Pile driving or installation of piers  

 

NouvLR, the consortium in charge of building the REM, is required to comply with vibration thresholds. These thresholds aim to ensure the integrity of the surrounding structures. 

 

 

Mitigation measures 

Before beginning the work, NouvLR identifies the buildings and infrastructure in the construction zone. Inspections are done and work methods are selected to minimize the transmission of vibrations to the ground.  

In sensitive areas, measurements will also be done before construction work begins, so as to determine the level of ambient vibration.  

Tight control of vibrations is ensured during the work, which means: 

  • Using seismographs positioned at the borders of the construction zone 
  • Analyzing results in real time and immediately adjusting work methods as required 

Want to find out more about vibrations?

Fact sheet on vibrations during construction

For more information about vibrations during the REM’s construction, consult the fact sheet.

Consult the fact sheet

Live data from the construction sites

Consult the noise and air quality data of the REM under construction, updated every 48 hours.  

Environmental data

A platform currently in development presents the data every 48 hours. You can consult the data on a beta version now. 

See the data
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