New York City’s Construction Noise Ordinance Rules Of Compliance

New York States Department of Environmental Protection has begun enforcing laws governing noise pollution levels, particularly when it comes to construction noise in Manhattan. The latest noise mitigation guidelines, in effect since July 2008, are the first changes to New York State noise ordinances in more than 30 years and call for noise abatement solutions to be applied to construction equipment operating within earshot of New York Citys general public (Section 28-101 Required Noise Mitigation measures for General Construction.)

The ordinance, which can be found in its entirety at, demands noise abatement or sound blocking material at every construction site within New York City. As it applies to City construction sites, the law requires each construction site to be equipped with sound abatement fencing material that meets a Sound Transmission Class (STC) of 30 or higher.

Where a construction fence is in place, (Section 28-107 Perimeter Noise Barriers) compliance can be met by installing Acoustifence 1/8-inch (3mm) thick sound deadening material. Measuring 6-feet (1.82 meters) high by 30-feet (9.14 meters) long with brass eyelets along the top and bottom edge for easy attachment to any chain link fence or other framework, Acoustifence, when installed properly, can bring construction sites within the City into compliance by meeting the 30 STC noise barrier rating.

Additionally, the ordinance requires construction fencing to be limited to 15-feet in height and to block the line of sight to the receptor. Acoustifence meets these requirements, and can be installed or removed in less than one hour by two people. Acoustifence can be used as a temporary or permanent noise barrier (Section 28-108 Temporary or portable noise barriers) and is reusable, which means it can be rolled up and taken to another area of the City and re-used to meet noise ordinances anywhere a sound barrier is required. The Acoustifence material is a proprietary viscoelastic polymer material with a high-density mineral content, heavy yet extremely flexible and impervious to mold, mildew, and UV.

Acoustiblok, Inc., the company that manufactures and distributes Acoustifence, makes sound abatement products to help meet other NYC Noise Mitigation Ordinance requirements for construction devices and activities (Section 28-102), Utility Noise (Section 28-105) and Utilities noise mitigation (Section 28-106).

New York contractors are now required to develop noise mitigation plans before work can begin on any project, and special mitigation plans must be established for particularly sensitive areas near hospitals and churches. Construction activity must be limited to the hours of 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekends, unless public safety necessitates an alternative.

For more information on compliance to New Yorks noise regulations and other noise problems, visit our website at