Today's sound barriers are visually attractive and environmentally friendly
Many studies have shown that where vehicle noise is significant the construction of traffic noise harriers (sound walls) has been the most effective mechanism to curb vehicle noise for residents living next to high density roadways.
Noise barriers can be designed in one of two ways, to blend into the environment, or to make a dominant visual statement. Both can work well in different situations. A barrier can be blended into an area by using light and transparent materials. This allows natural light to pass through, and in many cases reduces the perceived height of the barrier.
In other situations a well designed barrier with strength of form and a firm, distinctive silhouette may help to strengthen the area. Earlier noise barriers are often ‘unsightly’. Today, they are well designed and blend well with the background.
As noise barriers arc often viewed at speed, heir appearance needs to be simple, because small decorations are likely to blur and appear cluttered when viewed at speed. However, it must also be taken into account that local The sound tube in Melbourne, Australia,
residents will also have designed to reduce roadway noise without
to view these barriers detracting from the area's aesthetics.
everyday,often for extended periods of time.
Excessive detailing of the barrier can increase the dominance of the barrier. Some experts believe it is generally more desirable to use colour, texture and landscaping in the overall design to help the barrier reflect the character of its surroundings.
The colour of noise barriers is an important aesthetic element. Generally colours are either chosen to help the barrier blend in to the environment, or to create a pleasing visual effect. Plantings at the base of noise barriers can improve the aesthetics of the barrier, as well as giving it a more natural feel.
The angle of noise barriers also affects their aesthetics. A barrier with a vertical profile can make people feel confined. Angling the wall can reduce this effect. However, deciding which way to angle the wall can also be difficult. Angling it away from the road gives drivers an increased feeling of space, but may make an increased feeling of confinement for those on the other side and visa-versa.
Noise barriers often appear incongruous or characterless; this is often a result, of poor design related to cost reduction. Although their main function should be to control traffic noise, the visual effect should not damage the surrounding areas.
To prevent noise from becoming a burden and haying detrimental consequences, Degussa AG's Business Unit Rohm Plexiglas has for many years been developing transparent noise control products and systems that are ideal both from an economical and ecological point of view. Examples can be found the world over. Today, transparent noise barriers made from Plexiglas Soundstop belong to the streetscape in many European countries, but also in Hong Kong, Japan and Australia.
Soundstop can be installed both flat and in the form of barrel vaults. By reflecting sound at the barrier made of Soundstop, the volume of noise in the area behind it is considerably reduced. Being transparent, the material offers a clear view from both sides.
The light-transmitting sheets also make an important contribution to road safety. Since they cast no harsh shadows on the road surface, drivers have no need to adjust to a constant change in lighting conditions, and remain in visual contact with their surroundings.
The weather resistance of Plexiglas means that the high light transmission and all other properties remain practically unchanged for many years.
Soundstop is offered in seven standard colours. Special colours can be developed on request. Moreover, the simple and inexpensive processing options it offers, such as thermoforming, cutting to size and drilling or surface treatment, leave virtually unlimited scope for individual designs.
The barrier can be installed using a simple post and foundation design. Weighing only 34 kg per m2 no heavy lifting equipment is needed to install. It is available in heights up to 8.5m and in virtually any colour.
ROADS OF BELARUS
Belarus is fifteenth among countries with developed network of motorways by density of public roads per one square kilometer and twelfth by their length per one thousand of inhabitant
More than four centuries ago the first documents( statuses) for the state regulation of public roads and traffic rules were introduced in Belarus. In XVIII-XIX the Belarusian roads reached the European level. During the Soviet times a large-scale road construction ensured the creation of optimum network of motorways. Presently, having 207,600 square kilometres of territory and 10.5 million inhabitants, Belarus accounts for 53,500 kilometres of public roads. More than 67% of them are concrete or asphaltic concrete, 1,830 km of roads have four or more traffic lanes. The core of Belarusian motorway network is republican highways 16,382 km long.
The main government document that sets out economic, legal and administrative principles of governing the country's system of motorways is the 1994 Law on Motorways. The Committee for Motorways under the Belarusian Transport Ministry oversees the branch that is financed from the state budget road fund.