Noise absorptive concrete wall aesthetics
Aesthetics of the noise wall(s) will be determined by MnDOT in collaboration with local stakeholders. Any additional upgrades or features that vary from standard panels or posts will require stakeholder cost participation.
MnDOT has several approved precast concrete vendors with panel textures to choose from. Panel textures on the highway side of the wall should be determined with consideration of the established or future aesthetics of the corridor. Textures on the residential side of the wall will be decided by MnDOT with local stakeholder input.
Concept 1 – Ashlar stone pattern
Concept 2 – Vertical rib pattern
Concept 3 – Cut stone pattern
The wall posts will be made of concrete and can be topped with an architectural cap.
MnDOT utilizes a standard color palette primarily for maintenance purposes. Below are the standard color options for most areas. Noise wall colors are chosen on a corridor basis depending the existing and future planned infrastructure on the roadway corridor. MnDOT District 1 & District 6 have additional options, not shown, due to surrounding context.
Wall end taper
Unless site conditions do not allow, the wall(s) will step down in height to visually soften the beginning and end of the wall(s). The steps will be in uniform increments with the last section ranging 10 to 12 feet in height. The post spacing at the end tapers may be decreased to accommodate the required step height ratios and site conditions.
MnDOT’s cost participation guidance allows for certain eligible aesthetic elements of a trunk highway project to be paid for by MnDOT. The cost participation amount is determined by level of impact, specific aesthetic item, and project type category. Typically, projects that include noise walls allow for a 4% MnDOT cost participation for noise wall aesthetics as a percentage of the estimated MnDOT project construction costs. MnDOT is showing this cost participation being use to provide coping on panels and architectural caps on the top of noise wall posts. If cities are interested in using the MnDOT aesthetic cost participation allotment toward different elements, then this can be discussed during the project’s Visual Quality process.
Cost participation from local units of government or other external funding sources will be required for requested noise wall elements that are beyond what MnDOT has determined as necessary for the noise mitigation aspect of highway projects. Any additional upgrades or features that vary from standard panels or posts will require stakeholder cost participation.
Non-standard aesthetic elements and cost participation with the local unit of government can be discussed during the project’s Visual Quality process.