noisepollution.jpgA new noise code will go into effect tonight/tomorrow morning when the clock strikes midnight, and that clock better have muffled bells. It's the first comprehensive overhaul of noise ordinances in about 30 years and was proposed by Mayor Bloomberg three and a half years ago. It's mostly oriented towards bars and clubs, where a growing nightlife presence in neighborhoods like the Lower East Side has left many residents sleepless. The New York Times notes that noisy cars and motorcycles will be completely banned from the city, there will be a limit on how long dogs can bark continuously, garbage trucks will be required to stay at least 50 feet from residential buildings between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m., construction noise must be mitigated (Adrienne Shelley was killed for complaining about construction noise), and ice cream trucks will have to go quiet when parked curbside. We wonder if this will have any effect on the creative siren-DJ stylings emanating from police cars. Either way, enforcement of the new code may be spotty because the Dept. of Environmental Protection only has 26 noise meters. The police have 80.

The New York Post reports that the stricter noise regulations are worrying Mr. Softee truck owners and drivers, whose livelihood is ensured by the incessant jingling siren call that beckons kids on summer vacation to their trucks. The Post's story quotes one ice cream distributor who predicted that the jingle-ban could melt ice cream sales by 30%.

The full and official new 25 page noise code can be viewed at New York City's site here (pdf). We didn't see anything about banning upstairs neighbors from clomping around in what sound like wooden clogs on hardwood floors very early in the morning.

(Noise pollution, by at flickr)