Home > Environment & Community > Community Improvement > Sound Barriers and Noise Reduction

Community Resource Guide to Sound Barriers and Noise Reduction

The Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) is tasked with the responsibility of designing, constructing, and maintaining a world-class transportation system to meet the needs of the motoring public. As increasing numbers of motorists use our highway system, the sounds generated by these vehicles adversely affect residents that live along Maryland roadways. For this reason, SHA works hard to reduce the impact of highway traffic noise on communities who meet federally regulated eligibility criteria for noise abatement.

To determine eligibility for noise abatement, SHA investigates highway traffic noise impacts for communities that are next to existing state highways, in areas where a new highway is being constructed or an existing highway is expanded. Based on SHA’s Sound Barrier Policy, we provide reasonable and feasible noise abatement solutions where appropriate. To learn more about our programs and how they work, please select from the links below. Additional resources may be found in the resources section at the right hand side of each page. If you have more questions or can’t find what you’re looking for, please contact us.

Highway Traffic NoiseFollow this link to find background information on Sound and Noise, Causes of Traffic Noise, Reducing Traffic Noise Impacts and Sound Barriers

Noise AnalysisSHA’s Environmental Policy, Highway Traffic Noise Analysis and
Highway Traffic Noise Measurement.

Type I ProgramThe Type I Program is for construction of sound barriers along new highway construction or when an existing highway is being expanded.

Type II ProgramThe Type II Program is for sound barrier consideration in situations where the majority of residences pre-date the construction of an existing highway.

Frequently Asked QuestionsFrequently Asked Questions



Please go over the information for our Type I and Type II programs to learn more about our policy on noise abatement. To submit a highway traffic noise inquiry, please complete the online form. Your inquiry will be investigated and you will receive a response.

For additional questions, please contact us at:

Office of Highway Development
Maryland State Highway Administration
707 North Calvert Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21202