Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Owner/Operator: Fiera Foods
Fiera Foods produces frozen dough and baked goods at a manufacturing plant in a Toronto suburb. The company is one of the region’s largest food manufacturers, whose clients over the years have included Walmart, Tim Hortons, Costco, Metro, Sobeys and Loblaws. In 2015 a major expansion at the Facility was concluded. The project involved installing large warehouse freezers, expanding food production space, and building new underground parking. Condensers were installed to service the new freezers and neighboring residents began to notice a significant increase in noise as full production ramped up. As a result, HGC Engineering was contracted by Fiera Foods to undertake an Acoustic Assessment, and we recommended a number of mitigation measures which were implemented over the course of 2016 and early 2017, including the installation of rooftop noise walls around condensing fluid coolers and the use of variable speed controllers for the condensers. With these efforts, the Facility came into Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) compliance and an Environmental Compliance Approval was issued.
The company then applied to the City for a minor variance to convert the underground parking into R&D space. The Committee of Adjustment for the City denied the application due to past noise issues. The dispute was appealed to the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB) for resolution at which time the issue became front page news at the Toronto Star. An HGC senior acoustical engineer attended the OMB hearing on behalf of Fiera and testified that, with all the mitigation measures implemented, noise associated with the
Facility no longer caused any significant environmental noise pollution and the factory was now fully in compliance with MECP noise regulations. In addition, the acoustical engineer asserted that any prior noise issues at the Facility were unrelated to the variances before the Board and the variances would not alter the sound levels of the facility.
Acoustical Consulting Service Solutions Delivered:
- Conducted detailed acoustic assessment reports and audits in accordance with Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks (MECP) procedures
- Specified noise controls
- Developed noise control plans