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Environmental Division - Air Quality & Noise Analysis Sections

James K. Polk Building, Suite 900
505 Deaderick Street
Nashville, Tennessee 37243-0334
Phone: 615.741.5373
Fax: 615.741.1098

The primary role of the Section is to evaluate the potential air quality and noise effects of highway projects.

The Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT) recognizes that highway traffic noise is an important environmental impact consideration in the improvement and development of the state’s highway system. Noise impacts are taken into consideration in the planning, location, design, and construction phases of highway project development. Decisions made during each of these phases attempt to minimize impacts from highway traffic noise on noise-sensitive areas.

TDOT noise studies are conducted in accordance with the FHWA noise standards, Procedures for Abatement of Highway Traffic and Construction Noise, 23 CFR 772, the Tennessee Department of Transportation's Policy on Highway Traffic Noise Abatement, and Section 5.3.4 (Noise) of the Tennessee Environmental Procedures Manual.

Photo of noise barrier wallTraffic noise analysis is performed for developed lands containing noise-sensitive land uses and for undeveloped land that is permitted. The areas (receivers) that are chosen for modeling will be outdoor areas where frequent human use occurs. These outdoor areas could be patios, porches, decks, balconies, common grounds areas, or other areas of frequent human use.

Additional Resources:

Highway Traffic Noise - This Federal Highway Administration website describes some fundamentals of highway traffic noise and FHWA's noise requirements for federal highway projects. It is intended for the general public, elected officials, and anyone interested in learning about the basics of highway traffic noise.

Keeping the Noise Down - This website presents basic information on noise.

Air Quality:
TDOT air quality studies are conducted in accordance with Section 5.3.5 (Air Quality) of the Tennessee Environmental Procedures Manual. Air quality analyses for highway projects typically address Project-Level Transportation Conformity and Mobile Source Air Toxics (MSATs).

Noise Policies and Procedures