It WILL be a problem.
The noise study included with the EAW was lacking in testing on the lake, realistic (not assumed or modeled) measurements for the type of facility, and had conflicting results. It was also held during a Performance Driving School where it is not an accurate representation of actual noise concerns, nor was it done for the required amount of time. It was measured just outside of the study area, ignoring that sound carries - especially over open land.
Minnesota Pollution Control Agency submitted comment:
"Local governments have an obligation under Minn. R. ch. 7030.0030 to “take all reasonable measures within its jurisdiction to prevent the establishment of land use activities . . . in any location where the [noise standards] will be violated immediately upon establishment of the land use.” This means that, if a modeling exercise shows potential problems with the state noise standard resulting from the proposed (new) land-use, the local government should either prevent the land-use change itself or require noise mitigation. The MPCA considers noise concerns related to land-use decisions to fall within the jurisdiction of local governmental units, so those local governments would handle any potential residential complaints stemming from noise at and from the proposed Project.
Noise is a pollutant, and mounting evidence suggests that exposure to excess environmental noise is associated with a variety of adverse health effects. Chronic exposure to environmental noise has been associated with stress, heart disease, stroke, weight gain, and diabetes. It is therefore imperative to seriously consider noise levels from proposed projects and potential impacts on nearby residents and the users of the development.
The MPCA has the authority to enforce its noise standards in order to protect human health and welfare, and is concerned that the City of Eagle Lake and the Project proposer have not yet taken all reasonable steps to address noise concerns at the proposed Project."
Response(s) from the Findings of Fact:
"The sound monitoring systems will allow track operators to conduct daily monitoring of vehicles, since any noise violations will not be known until the vehicle is driven on the track"
"Any noise violations will not be known until the vehicle is driven on the track"
So is it build it and then see if the noise levels will be acceptable? Tracks such as these often struggle to stay compliant with noise standards. Even without racing events, excessive acceleration, drifting, and squealing tires will be expected. The fact that sound carries - especially in rural areas - is repeatedly downplayed by assumptions of weather and ground conditions.
Below are 2 videos Mankato Motorsports Park shared on their Facebook page and YouTube.
Establishment of Eagle Lake Sound Committee
To effectively deal with compliance of the Developer’s Project with MPCA noise standards, the Eagle Lake City Council hereby establishes the Eagle Lake Sound Review Committee (“Committee”).
Purpose of the Committee
The purpose of the Committee is to create a balance between sound generating activities at the Track with a desire for livable communities currently existing or likely to be developed in the future in proximity to the Track.
Membership on Committee
The committee shall be composed of 5 members: 3 residents of the City of Eagle Lake selected by the City Council; 1 city staff member or city council member selected by the City Council; and 1 representative of the Developer to be selected by the Developer. The City Attorney shall serve as legal advisor to the Committee.
The Developer shall reimburse the City for its reasonable, necessary and documented costs of the Committee including reimbursement to the City for the City Attorney’s time and reimbursement to the City for the time of an acoustics professional retained for the purpose of assisting the City in resolving any noise disputes with the Project Developer.
Committee Relationship With City Council
The Committee is accountable to the City Council. The Committee chairperson shall prepare quarterly reports to the Council on the Committee’s activities, if any. The Committee shall meet monthly or more often in the discretion of the Committee chairperson who shall be duly appointed by the City Council. Committee members can serve a maximum of 2 consecutive yearly terms.
Responsibilities of Committee
The Committee shall: (i) monitor noise generating activities at the Track to insure that MPCA noise standards are not being violated; (ii) investigate each reasonable complaint that MPCA standards have been or are being violated; (iii) report to the Council its findings of any investigation conducted by the Committee of MPCA noise standard violations; and (iv) make recommendations to the City Council for reasonable corrective action of any MPCA noise standard violations. It shall be the sole responsibility of the City Council to take enforcement actions for violations of MPCA noise standards.
Whenever a disagreement or dispute arises between the Committee and the Developer regarding Developer’s compliance with MPCA noise standards, such dispute shall be resolved in accordance with the following procedures.
Meet and Confer
The Committee shall first notify the Developer in writing of such dispute and request a meeting. No later than seven (7) business days after receipt of such request, Developer and majority of the Committee members shall meet and confer for a minimum of two (2) hours. This meeting shall be for the express purposes of (1) exchanging and reviewing all pertinent non-privileged documents and information relating to the matters and issues in dispute, (2) freely and candidly discussing Developer’s and the Committee’s positions, and (3) reaching agreement upon a reasonable, compromise resolution of the dispute.
If the dispute is not resolved to the satisfaction of the Committee or Developer, either party may request mediation, which shall be compulsory. Mediation shall occur utilizing the services of a trained mediator, mutually agreed upon by both Parties, with at least three (3) years experience in mediating development disputes. Costs for such mediation shall be paid by Developer.
The City Council shall have the right to approve any dispute resolution arrived at by the Developer and Committee and shall have the right to accept or reject any recommendation of the Committee in the Council’s sole discretion.
CORNER STONE TOWNHOMES
MMS agrees that the noise levels exceed the NAC-1 standards near the apartment complex represented by Receptor R1. MMS responds as follows:
• Noise monitoring completed at location M1/R1 for the noise study demonstrate that the apartment buildings, due to existing noise from TH 14 traffic, are impacted by noise levels that exceed MPCA NAC-1 standards.
• These noise levels are not expected to be significantly impacted by the Motorsports Park.
• Additional mitigation measures on the MMS property, north of TH 14, will not provide substantial mitigation of noise levels on the south side of TH 14.
MMS is Willing to Explore and Provide Effective Noise Mitigation for the Apartment Complex on the South Side of TH 14 if needed Under current conditions, the high noise level impacts from TH 14 at some of the apartment building patios and balconies make them inappropriate for outdoor use under MPCA rules. Given modeled L10 and L50 noise level increases are expected to be imperceptible, MMS will work closely with a noise committee to monitor noise during events for a period agreed upon with the City of Eagle Lake, apartment complex owners, and the residents to identify any measurable increases in noise from the track. If monitoring identifies significant L10 and L50 noise level increases, MMS will provide effective mitigation of noise levels at the apartment complex.
Such measures may include: • Construction of an area(s) for outdoor use on the apartment complex property that is separated from TH 14 by new walls and/or existing buildings, • To the extent that existing noise levels are causing issues with indoor activities, including sleep interference, MMS will investigate the potential replacement of windows and/or patio doors in impacted units with windows/patio doors that provide better noise reduction capabilities.