‘Every day, it’s noise’: Dorval residents unhappy with noise barrier construction

Click to play video: 'Dorval sound wall sparks concern'
Dorval sound wall sparks concern
WATCH: Dorval residents are critical of a new sound wall being erected to block airport noise. As Global's Amanda Jelowicki reports, construction is almost finished – but residents say the wall isn't effective so far – Oct 5, 2018

Dorval residents who live near Trudeau airport are unhappy with the construction of a new sound barrier being erected along the former Dorval golf course. They say while the barrier is supposed to reduce airport noise, construction of the acoustic screen has caused noise levels to soar for the last year and a half.

“When this beep beep starts, it drives my wife insane,” said resident Roger Smythe, who lives across the street from the golf course. “The machines working back and forth, oh my God, it won’t stop.”

Ever since construction started on the sound barrier, Smythe has had problems. Cracks in his foundation have kept the 73-year-old retiree busy patching regularly. Coupled with dust all over his house, and non-stop noise, he’s had enough.

“It’s been really really tough. My wife could not sit on the chesterfield yesterday because the vibrations from these big machines that are working here are way worse than any plane I have ever heard,” said Smythe. “It sure changed our lives.”

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The airport authority started building the wall about a year and a half ago, after it took over the former Dorval golf course. It promised residents the screen would help reduce noise levels as the airport got closer to a residential area. But residents never imagined how disruptive the construction of the wall itself would be.

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The wall is 850 metres long and five metres high. It’s costing Trudeau airport $5.5 million.

But locals have complained of unbearable noise levels for almost two years.

“Every day, it’s noise. You get up in the morning, they start at 7 a.m. and it’s dusty,” said Suzanne Fuchs.

Fuchs is skeptical the wall will actually reduce airport noise.

“You can really hear it. I don’t know if the wall will help that,” she said. “It’s bad. It’s noisy. You keep the windows closed all the time.”

Other residents though worry more about increased traffic.

The city closed Cardinal Avenue at the edge of the golf course during construction, in part to put in a bike path.

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Residents noticed a dramatic increase in cars on their streets. Even though the avenue is now open, traffic hasn’t reduced.

“It’s very busy on our cross street now and that is where the extra noise is coming from and that has become unacceptable to me,” said resident Erin Hogan. She lives around the corner from the golf course, and plans on erecting a fence around her property because she is so worried about her two kids.

Global News tried reaching the city for comment, but the city didn’t respond.

The airport authority told Global News construction on the sound barrier is almost finished.

And it said its wall meets all required noise mitigation standards.

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