Noise Management Plan
Collectively Kids 28 Carrington Road, Mt Albert
Written by J Cawley, Principal Consultant, Acoustics, Kingett Mitchell Ltd, in consultation with M Bachmann in November 2006 as part of the Resource Consent Application for Collectively Kids.
The original content was not altered but some specific centre strategies were included. These are underlined. A section has been added to address the impact of ambient noise on children and adults at the centre.
The Noise Management Plan provides written procedures that can be used as part of the overall management system to ensure that the operation of the Collectively Kids childcare centre at 28 Carrington Road, Mt Albert complies with the established noise performance criterion.
Under the City of Auckland - District Plan – Isthmus Section - Operative 1999, the neighbouring properties on Carrington Road and Sutherland Road are zoned Residential 6a, whilst the land to the south and west is zoned Special Purpose Activity. Rule 188.8.131.52 of the District Plan sets out the noise limits for Residential Zones, these are:
L10 50 dB(A) between 07:00-22:00 from Monday to Saturday and between 09:00-18:00 on Sundays and public holidays; and
L10 40 dB(A) and Lmax 75 dB(A) or background (L95) plus 30 dB(A), whichever is the lower at all other times.
The District Plan also requires that noise shall be measured and assessed in accordance with New Zealand Standards NZS 6801:1991 – Measurement of Sound and NZS 6802:1991 – Assessment of Environmental Sound.
As the centre will operate from 07:30-18:00 from Monday to Friday, the relevant design criterion will be the daytime L10 50 dB(A) limit.
Collectively Kids shall provide Auckland City Council and the occupants of all adjacent residential units with the name and contact details (address & phone number) of the person who will be responsible for the implementation of the Noise Management Plan.
This person is Marina Bachmann and can be contacted at Collectively Kids phone: 849 5261. Contact details have been supplied to all neighbours who were included in limited notification when the centre opened. See attached letter.
The actual management of noise may be delegated to other identified competent and responsible persons and shall be included in those persons’ job descriptions. At least one identified responsible person shall be on site at all times during operational hours.
Control of Noise Levels
The potential sources of noise from Collectively Kids are:
children using the outdoor play area;
vehicle movements and voices in the car park;
activities inside the childcare centre building; and
noise from fixed plant including mechanical ventilation systems.
The main source of noise and the one that has the greatest potential to exceed the noise limit is children using the outdoor play area. Acoustic screening has been provided to protect immediate neighbours, which in combination with a high standard of supervision is predicted to maintain noise at compliant levels.
Because of the street frontage parking locations and the existing road traffic noise there will minimal effects from on-site vehicle movements on neighbouring properties and the fence along the northern boundary will ensure compliant levels on the adjacent property.
The building layout has been designed with the quieter activity rooms (office, under 2’s sleep and play areas) on the northern side close to the property boundary. Even with windows open for ventilation, there will be sufficient distance separation and screening attenuation to control noise from within the building to compliant levels, but staff may consider closing some or all windows during singing and musical activities to minimise boundary noise levels.
Equipment suppliers have guaranteed that the combined noise level from all mechanical plant and equipment does not exceed L10 40 dB(A) (with no “special audible characteristics” as defined under NZS 6802:1991) beyond the site boundary. As this level is 10 dB(A) below the daytime limit, noise from these sources will not contribute to cumulative levels that could result in non-compliance.
The management of Collectively Kids recognise the importance of ensuring that staff are properly trained, understand the importance of controlling the effects of noise on neighbouring properties and are fully conversant with the provisions of the noise management plan.
Collectively Kids has a commitment to employing fully qualified staff whenever possible and the in-house training for all permanent staff will include familiarisation with the procedures and requirements set out in the noise management plan.
Those recent graduates and relievers who may lack experience in the operation of the centre will be supervised by permanent staff members and in addition all temporary staff will be required to read the noise management plan before starting work and to comply with it at all times. Copies of this plan will be displayed in the office. A laminated copy of the staff training section will be displayed by the storage area outside. The plan is also included in the reliever folder which all relieving teachers new to the centre are required to read.
Because of concerns of the effects of noise on neighbouring properties specific training will be provided to ensure that:
staff are fully aware of the need to control excessively noisy behaviour to maintain compliance with the District Plan noise limits;
outdoor play activities are designed and managed to maintain children’s interest and attention;
whilst active play is encouraged, screaming and shouting is not - it is considered that this type of behaviour can be intimidating to other children;
there is no use of percussive, hard wheeled and other potentially noisy toys in the outdoor play area;
outdoor music activities will only be offered on the covered deck and noise from these will be kept within required limits and
a centre book is regularly read to children to remind them of the effect of noise on neighbours.
Noise Compliance Testing
Noise monitoring was undertaken by suitably qualified Kingett Mitchell Ltd staff on at least one occasion within the first 3 months of the opening of the centre. Measurements were made over a period of at least 3-4 hours, which will include busy outdoor play times, at locations representative of the most exposed residential receivers.
Measured noise levels did not exceed the daytime noise limit.
A copy of the measurement results was provided to Council within 10 working days of the completion of the test.
Marina Bachmann shall be the contact person for any complaints and any visits from noise control officers or other Council staff. Marina Bachmann shall maintain a complaint log, which shall be kept in the manager’s office, and be available for inspection by Council officers at any time.
Any complaints received shall be logged with details of the nature of the complaint, time of the event and contact details of the complainant. Marina Bachmann shall endeavour to respond to any complaints as quickly as possible and to review the complaint and advise the complainant of what, if any, actions have been undertaken as a result within 48 hours.
If a noise control officer or other Council staff visits the site as a result of a noise complaint, the responsible person should ask to accompany the officer to the approximate location of the complainant (or an alternative representative location) so that the level of noise considered excessive by the officer can be appreciated by the responsible person.
Management of the impact of ambient noise on children and adults at the centre
A report addressing the impact of noise on children at the centre was part of the centre resource consent application. It did not identify any significant issues regarding ambient noise in the outdoor area.
Measures taken in the construction of the inside area to reduce noise:
Acoustic tiles have been used on ceilings in all play areas
Acoustic tiles have replaced some noticeboards (2015)
The infant sleep room has acoustic tiles and doors as well as double glazing to limit ambient noise
All walls have been insulated
Underfloor insulation has been installed
The older children’s sleep and play area has sliding doors which can be closed to minimise disturbance at sleep time
Infants and toddlers have access to a separate room to limit the impact of noise from the larger group of older children