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Quiet Pavements: A Sustainable and Environmental Friendly Choice


Traffic noise is a growing problem, especially for urban areas. The common noise mitigation measures include noise barriers or earthberms that obstruct sound propagation from the roadway to the neighbouring community. Such costly measures are infeasible or ineffective in many urban areas because no actual noise reduction at the source is achieved. Study has found tire-pavement interaction as the major noise contributor at vehicle speed of ≥50 km/h and pavement surface characteristics play an important role in noise generation and propagation. Construction of quieter pavements is therefore considered to be promising technique for economical/sustainable and environmental friendly highway. This paper is intended to provide an overview of what transportation/pavement engineers or highway agencies/ municipalities need to know about the noise for planning, design and construction of quieter roads. The ranges of sound level for typical highway pavement surface courses/textures including some results of quiet pavement research at the University of Waterloo are also presented to aid the practitioners in selecting surface courses or textures of the pavement. Stone Mastic Asphalt (SMA) and whisper grinded portland cement concrete surfaces are shown to be best options considering pavement durability, safety and maintenance issues of roads carrying high volume of traffic. For low volume and low speed roads, double layer porous concrete or porous asphalt are shown to be promising techniques based on study in Europe.

Conference Paper Details

Session title:
M. Alauddin Ahammed
Susan L. Tighe