Noise Element N-2: Minimal Noise Spillover

Only areas below are considered part of the General Plan.

Noise is generally defined as unwanted sound that can negatively affect the physiological or psychological well-being of individuals or communities. Elevated ambient noise levels can result in noise interference (e.g., speech interruption/masking, sleep disturbance, disturbance of concentration) and cause annoyance. The City of Menifee is impacted by several types of noise sources, many of them directly connected with major roadways that traverse the city. Mobile sources of noise, especially cars and trucks, are the most common and significant sources of noise in most communities; in Menifee, major transportation noise sources include Interstate 215 (I-215) and State Route 74 (SR-74). In addition, rail lines operated by the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) contribute minimally to the noise environment in the Romoland community. Secondarily, land uses throughout the city generate stationary-source noise. Certain land uses are particularly sensitive to noise and vibration, including residential, school, and open space/recreation areas where quiet environments are necessary for enjoyment, public health, and safety. The Noise Element contains policies for limiting the noise generated from future projects as well as means to abate existing noise problems.

Purpose of Element
To limit population exposure to physically and/or psychologically damaging as well as intrusive noise levels, the federal government, the State of California, various county governments, and most municipalities in the state have established standards and ordinances to control noise.

The Noise Element is a mandatory component of the General Plan pursuant to the California Planning and Zoning Law, Section 65302(f). This element also follows guidelines adopted by the Office of Planning and Research in the State of California General Plan Guidelines. The primary function of the Noise Element is to ensure that considerations of noise are incorporated into the land use planning and decision-making process. The Noise Element of the General Plan is directly related to both the land use and circulation elements. It identifies the major noise sources in the city and contains goals and policies to protect citizens from excessive noise exposure. These goals and policies are consistent with applicable state and local noise standards and guidelines to control noise exposure and to promote land use compatibility with the noise environment.

Noise is a given component of everyday activities: the sound of a popular restaurant at night, the ringing of a school bell, the horn of a train, or the rush of traffic. To ensure that noise impacts do not negatively affect the community's quality of life, special attention must be paid to providing policy direction to enhance land use compatibility and support mitigation strategies that limit noise impacts, especially on sensitive uses. As the city continues to experience new development, city leaders are also committed to maintaining the community's rural character. With new development comes the potential for new impacts, including those resulting from noise and vibration. Transitions between urban and rural and residential and nonresidential land uses become increasingly important to preserve the quality of life and typical character of the community. The Noise Element is organized around 2 general topics: protecting noise-sensitive land uses and limiting noise-spillover from noise-generating uses. The protection of noise-sensitive land uses is best achieved through a combination of policies related to regulation, siting and design, and transportation.

Click on the goal links below to see the policies that are associated with the individual goals identified in this element. Readers should also refer to the Implementation Actions for additional items that must be undertaken by the city to achieve the goals and policies for this element.
General Plan Exhibits