Environmental noise can be a serious problem in the lives of many individuals. While background noise is a fact of life for everyone, there can be times when the level of noise prevents normal life from continuing. Too much noise can not only affect your ability to sleep, but also increase levels of anxiety and stress. Excessive noise will often make family and work life unpleasant or even impossible for those affected by it. For most people, excessive environmental noise is transitory and doesn't cause lasting problems, but for those living near noisy roads, heavy industry or other causes of constant noise, a lasting solution needs to be found to enable them to carry on with their lives.
How barrier walls can help
One of the most effective techniques for controlling noise used in Australia is the installation of concrete barrier walls. By placing barrier walls along transitways, tollways and freeways, noise can be contained and prevented from reaching neighbouring residential areas.
What type of barrier walls are available?
If you are considering a barrier wall installation as a part of your building program, then it is important to consider which type of wall would be most effective in your situation. There are three main types of barrier wall, and each has advantages and disadvantages.
- Dispersive barrier walls are designed to reduce the level of noise by redirecting it. The wall can direct the noise either upwards or downwards, depending on how it is designed.
- Reflective barrier walls are tall and intended to block noise and lower the overall noise level by blocking it.
- Absorptive barrier walls are often the right choice for narrow easements. They use a passage or membrane to dissipate the noise rather than simply redirecting it.
You will need to discuss with your engineers which solution is right for your situation. They will be able to assess the topography and the desired effects to see which type of barrier wall will produce the best results.
Precast or made-on-site?
Once you know what type of barrier wall you need, you must decide whether to install a precast concrete barrier wall, or whether to have the wall created on-site. There are advantages to each approach, although many construction companies are opting for precast concrete since it offers a faster construction time with a lower number of workers involved in the construction process. Conversely, designing your own wall will allow you to create a unique wall perfect for your location.