One of the reasons many small towns across America protest the opening of asphalt and concrete plants is the noise. Noise levels, depending on the plant, can not only break the existing rules and regulations but cause a nuisance to quiet neighborhoods. While most plants have to get city, and community, approval before building, it can be hard to tell what the noise impact will be until the plant is up and running at a full capacity.
Recently, a West Michigan town fought against an asphalt plant making too much noise during production. In this case, several homeowners banded together to get the city to take up arms against the asphalt plant. For some of these homeowners, the plant is less than 100 feet from their front doors. For others, even further away, the noise was becoming unbearable and disruptive. While the asphalt plant is able to run at full steam from 7 AM to 9 PM each day, according to city ordinances, home owners in the small town felt the noise was still above what city ordinances felt was appropriate, especially after those hours.
The asphalt plant agreed to cut down production and only operate at full capacity during the regulated hours, cutting down on the noise and keeping their neighbors happy. Since the plant opened, it has been working around the clock, with the noise ramping up and getting worse over the years, which the city ignored. Now that the city is involved in enforcing the laws in place, the community is hopeful the asphalt plant lives up to its promise to operate properly.
However, some residents are convinced that the place will be right back to it after a few weeks, causing more noise and disturbance for the community. For some residents, one who’s been there for 30 years, even the day-to-day noise is too much and unfortunately, under city codes and regulations, the asphalt plant can operate at its noise level during regular hours