Wednesday, February 15, 2012

What Is The Loud Banging Going On During The Day?

Several readers have asked us what the loud banging is that goes on all day and where it is coming.  It can be heard from several miles away. 

Theresa Doherty, UW Assistant Vice President for Regional Affairs,  told us that this is the pile driving activity for the new UW track and it will continue through the end of the month.

Teresa told us that the hours for pile driving, per the Construction Management Plan approved by the City, are from
8-5pm on weekdays and 9-5pm on weekends in accordance with SMC 25.08.425.C.   Theresa told us that driving has typically started closer to 8:45am and typically stop at 4pm and that no pile driving has occurred on a weekend.

The City Department of Planning and Development project description document states that due to soil conditions and surface settlement, deep foundations are required to support the track on 18 inch-diameter steel pipe piles which will be driven with an impact hammer. Nine to ten piles are driven per day.

"Sensitive receptors, such as residential properties located northeast and northwest of the site, are located at 1,500 feet away from the noise source. Noise and vibration impacts from pile driving will impact surrounding properties; however impacts are not considered significant and will be mitigated by the City of Seattle Noise Ordinance," the document states.

Theresa told us that with regard to the noise variance, the permit obtained from DPD (Department of Planning and Development) says "that while there will be noise made by the pile driving, the noise made by this procedure does not exceed the City of Seattle noise threshold thus no noise variance is needed.  And the noise is 'mitigated' by the fact that DPD has  required the contractor to contain the work within certain hours which they are doing."

The project description says in part:
Land Use Application to allow the relocation of the University of Washington Athletic Department's track and field from Husky Stadium to the IMA sports field No.2 (approximately one-half mile north of the stadium). Project includes bleacher seating for 2,000, two buildings totaling 3,000 sq. ft. containing restrooms, concessions and storage, 7,585 cu. yds. of grading and the removal of up to 100 parking spaces in Lot E1.
The project decision states in part:
The development site is approximately six acres. A Type III wetland has been delineated in the southeast corner of the site and requires a 60 foot buffer. The portion of University Slough located across Canal Road from the development site is classified as a Type II stream. A 100 foot riparian management area extends west from the bank of the University Slough. A portion of the riparian management area is located on the eastern portion of the site.

As part of the project proposal the wetland buffer will be averaged allowing for a buffer reduction at the northwest edge of the wetland. The buffer will be increased along the western edge of the wetland. Buffer enhancement is required. The submitted enhancement plan includes regrading of the wetland buffer to decrease the steep angle of the slope created with
historic grading of the field, allowing for the planting of native trees and shrubs to replace the existing herbaceous vegetation.


No comments: