How Can An Acoustic Consultant Help You To Meet The Planning Department’s Deadlines?

Posted: 5th May 2021

How Can An Acoustic Consultant Help You To Meet The Planning Department’s Deadlines?

Noise surveys are frequently required by Local Authorities as part of the planning application process for new projects of residential, commercial, industrial, or mixed-use developments. They are important when a proposed development:

  • Is likely to adversely affect nearby noise-sensitive buildings, such as houses, hospitals, or schools.


  • Will be a noise-sensitive use situated close to existing noise sources, such as traffic, deliveries to commercial premises, entertainment, or industrial activities.

A professional acoustic assessment report can determine existing noise levels (the baseline), use computer modelling to predict future noise levels, and identify effective ways to alleviate noise levels either during or after construction. Engaging with an acoustic consultant, such as ACA Acoustics, not only ensures the accuracy of a noise assessment but can also ensure developers meet the planning department’s deadlines.

Meeting Planning Department Deadlines

Timescales are important in planning applications. The process of awarding planning consent is governed by strict deadlines, with 8 weeks the statutory determination period for most planning applications and 16 weeks for larger developments that require an Environmental Impact Assessment.

As a developer, it is likely that you’ll be asked to submit technical assessment reports from relevant specialists which may range from noise impact assessments and air quality surveys to flood risk assessments and wildlife studies. Each technical assessment requires the involvement of experts in their respective fields, with acoustic consultants the go-to specialists for noise impact assessments.

There are several reasons why it’s important to meet the planning department’s deadlines:

  • Failure to submit a noise impact survey on-time may result in the planning application being declared invalid. This would result in you having to resubmit the application, wasting time and money, and delaying the start of your project.


  • Timely submission allows for the supply of accurate information to the Local Authority, reducing the chances of further requests for data that will delay the final decision.


  • Finally, one of the most important reasons to appoint an acoustic consultant at an early stage in the design process is so that a good acoustic design process (defined in ProPG: Planning and Noise) can be followed. An acoustic assessment may identify that expensive noise control treatments aren’t required if the plant is relocated to another position on the site, for example. In this instance if the acoustic consultant wasn’t appointed early enough the options are that the whole application would need to be revised or if the plant cannot be moved at that stage then the assessment will have to specify the expensive acoustic treatments.


  • Appointing an acoustic consultant at an early stage means that other reports and designs can be coordinated, so that the noise impact assessment is part of a successful package of information that meet the Local Authority’s requirements.


Having said all this, in many ways the content of the acoustic reports is of as much, if not more, importance. If the Local Authority’s Environmental Health Officer (EHO) rejects the submitted report or requests additional information or clarifications, then this can also result in a delay in granting the Decision Notice or even the EHO recommending the application is refused on noise grounds.

Keen To Meet Your Planning Department’s Deadlines? Get In Touch With ACA Acoustics!

Excellent service and efficiency are vital when carrying out acoustic surveys to support the planning process. At ACA Acoustics, we have extensive experience of working with developers to ensure they meet their obligations in providing accurate, reliable acoustic reports to councils. Our priority is to submit your noise survey on time, maximising the chance of your planning proposal being approved first time, without lengthy delays and requests for additional information.

Find Out More

To find out more about our noise assessment services and how an acoustic consultant could help you meet your deadlines, get in touch today.

Image source: Pixabay





Posted By:ACA Acoustics