Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

I-35W Minnesota River Bridge

Bloomington, Burnsville

Update on noise walls - Jan. 30, 2018

Property owners and residents who would experience a noise level reduction of at least five (5) decibels were able to vote for or against the noise wall at their location.

The votes are in and the decision about the noise wall is now final. Qualified voters had the opportunity to vote for or against building specific noise walls. As a result of these votes the noise wall on the east side of I-35W between 106th St. and Bloomington Cemetery in Bloomington will be constructed.

MnDOT will sent notices and noise wall ballots to people who were eligible to vote. Voting began on Dec. 15 and closed on Jan. 25, 2018.

Proposed Noise Wall along I-35W

Why build a noise wall?

MnDOT recently conducted a noise study along I-35W between 106th St. in Bloomington and Cliff Rd. in Burnsville and noise levels were found to exceed state and federal noise standards. The noise study concluded that adding a noise wall along the east side of I-35W between 106th St. and the Bloomington Cemetery would reduce noise for properties adjacent to this area by at least five decibels and meet MnDOT's cost effectiveness criteria.

Studies have shown that changes in noise levels of less than three (3) decibels are not typically detectable by the average human ear. A decrease of five (5) decibels is generally noticeable by anyone, and a 10 decibel increase is usually felt to be "half as loud."

Where would the noise walls be built and what would they look like?

The proposed noise walls are 20-foot-tall built with wood planks and concrete posts. The proposed wall would be constructed along East Bloomington Freeway starting at 106th St. and extending approximately 900 feet to the north.

When will the noise walls be built?

The proposed noise walls would be built as part of the overall construction of the I-35W Minnesota River Bridge project that is currently planned for the 2018 through 2021 construction seasons.

Who was eligible to vote on whether a noise wall should be constructed?

Property owners or residents who experience a noise level reduction of at least five (5) decibels from the proposed noise wall are eligible to vote on the wall. MnDOT will send notices and noise wall ballots to people who were eligible to vote.

How does voting work?

If 50 percent or more of all possible voting points from eligible voters are received after the first request for votes, the majority of votes (based upon the votes received) determines the outcome. If less than 50 percent of the possible voting points for a wall are received after the first request, a second ballot will be mailed to the eligible voters who did not respond.

If 25 percent or more of all possible points for a barrier are received after the second request for votes, then the outcome is determined by the majority of votes received. If less than 25 percent of total possible points for a noise barrier are received after the second request for votes, then the barrier will NOT be constructed. If there is a tie, where there are equal numbers of points for and against a noise wall, the noise wall WILL be constructed.

If a noise wall is voted down, it will not be reconsidered.

What happens if I didn't vote?

If you don't vote, your decision to not vote is not counted as a vote against or for a noise wall.

How are the votes counted?

MnDOT uses a weighted voting system. Points are determined by how much your property or unit is affected by the noise wall and whether or not you own the property or unit.

Please see MnDOT's 2015 Noise Policy for information about the voting process.

Tally for noise wall votes

Voting results

*Votes will be tabulated when voting is complete after Jan. 25, 2018.)
**Note: If a majority of voting points received are NO, then the noise wall is removed from the project

  • Total eligible points: 126
  • Yes points: 87 (98%)
  • No points: 2 (2%%)
  • Results: Wall will be constructed

Noise Wall informational video