Supporting greener public space design with car noise insulation
In a Masters thesis at Ball State University in Indiana, Jing Tang looks at how green infrastructure can help to achieve this, and also at how traffic noise can limit the potential usefulness of nearby land.
He writes that motor vehicles “are one of the significant symbols of modern civilisation”, and one of the several main methods of transport used by people on a daily basis.
This is especially the case in core urban areas, where efficient use of land is also crucial to maximise the usable space in high-density populations.
However, because of loud traffic noise levels along the main transport corridors, some potentially very valuable land can often go underutilised, and tackling noise levels could therefore have benefits both in direct practical terms where more land is needed, and with associated environmental advantages.
The paper looks at green noise barriers – similar to the solid concrete barriers used to block traffic noise, but with a vegetation layer growing on the surface for better aesthetics and environmental performance.
But even with these, the author notes that a relatively high barrier is needed to block traffic noise to a high degree.
With car noise insulation to reduce the volume emitted in the first instance, it could be possible to use lower vegetation barriers to block road noise from the tyres too, working together to achieve greener and more peaceful public spaces even in urban areas.