The organisation that oversees National Highways, the Office of Rail and Road has published a comment piece about mitigating noise near the strategic road network.
Haydn Gill, the ORR’s Senior Performance Analyst, Highways, writes that an estimated 187,000 people in England live in noise important areas with respect to road noise, with millions more affected.
His report notes that the ORR holds National Highways to account by reporting on progress against noise mitigation targets, highlighting areas for improvement, and through advising the Department for Transport. ORR receives regular reporting against key performance indicators, including the number of households mitigated from noise.
He writes that National Highways can mitigate noise through a variety of means. Controlling noise at the source is the first consideration. This could be with lower noise surfacing, with research showing a reduction in noise from passenger vehicles between three and four decibels compared to older surfacing materials. National Highways installs lower noise surfacing as standard on new roads and when resurfacing existing roads. The company also considers resurfacing with lower noise surfacing in noise important areas before its planned renewal period.
Installing barriers (like the one pictured) can also mitigate road noise on large areas, by up to 10 decibels. National Highways considers the engineering feasibility and value for money before installing a barrier. National Highways also mitigates noise from households though its insulation programme, offering to upgrade households’ windows and insultation to reduce noise levels inside the house.
The comment piece also discusses funding.
You can read it here.
(Picture – ORR)