Minnesota Department of Transportation

511 Travel Info

I-494: Airport to Highway 169

Bloomington, Richfield, Edina, Eden Prairie in Hennepin County

Noise barriers

Traffic noise is being studied along I-494. Specific results for the noise analysis is available within the Noise Report for this project (see EA appendices).

Noise barriers are solid obstructions built between the highway and properties along the highway designed to reduce the noise level of vehicles. Barriers can be either berms or high vertical walls. Constructing a noise wall must be feasible and reasonable. Feasibility and reasonableness are determined by cost, amount of noise reduction, safety, and site considerations.

Traffic noise along I-494 between Hwy 169 and the Airport exceeds the state and federal noise standards at some locations. A noise study concluded that six noise walls along I-494 in Bloomington and Richfield would meet the necessary criteria to reduce noise for properties adjacent to I-494 by at least five decibels.
The proposed noise walls are 20-foot tall structures built with concrete panels and posts. The noise walls will be installed as part of the overall construction project, which is anticipated to begin in 2023.

For more information about traffic noise analysis and noise barriers, please visit MnDOT’s Noise webpage.

Noise wall voting

MnDOT has sent notices and noise wall ballots to people who are eligible to vote. Only the property owners or residents who experience a noise level reduction of at least five decibels from the proposed noise walls can vote on the walls.

Noise wall voting period begins: Mon, April 25, 2022
Noise wall voting meeting: Wed, May 11, 2022 from 5-6 p.m.
View meeting presentation (PDF)
Noise wall voting period ends: Wed, May 25, 2022

*If greater than 50 percent of the total eligible points are no votes then the noise wall is removed from the project.

Final voting tally (as of May 20, 2022)

Wall 1

South side of I-494 between East Bush Lake Rd. and Normandale Blvd.

  • Total eligible points: 153
  • Yes Points: 4 (3%)
  • No Points: 104 (68%)
  • Decision: TBD

Wall 2

North side of I-494 between Penn Ave. S and Xerxes Ave. S

  • Total eligible points: 138
  • Yes Points: 25 (18%)
  • No Points: 57 (41%)
  • Decision: TBD

Wall 3

North side of I-494 between 4th Ave. S and 2nd Ave. S

  • Total eligible points: 86
  • Yes Points: 0 (0%)
  • No Points: 0 (0%)
  • Decision: TBD

Wall 4

North side of I-494 between 12th Ave. S and Portland Ave. S

  • Total eligible points: 356
  • Yes Points: 1 (<1%)
  • No Points: 0 (0%)
  • Decision: TBD

Wall 5

North side of I-494 between Bloomington Ave. S and 12th Ave. S

  • Total eligible points: 158
  • Yes Points: 1 (1%)
  • No Points: 11 (7%)
  • Decision: TBD

Wall 13

North side of I-494 between Nicollet Ave. S and Wentworth Ave. S

  • Total eligible points: 24
  • Yes Points: 3 (13%)
  • No Points: 16 (67%)
  • Decision: TBD

More information about noise wall voting

If a noise wall meets the necessary criteria, then it will be proposed as part of the project and MnDOT will seek input from the community.

Who is eligible to vote on whether a noise barrier should be constructed?

MnDOT sent notices and noise wall ballots to people who were eligible to vote. Only the property owners or residents who experience a noise level reduction of at least five decibels from the proposed noise walls were allowed to vote on the wall.

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.

What happens if I didn't vote?

If you don’t vote, the voting points assigned to you do not count for or against the 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. If a noise wall is voted down, it will not be reconsidered.

Please see MnDOT’s 2017 Noise Policy for more information about the voting process.