Redressing Noise by Engineering Measures
The Executive Council endorsed in November 2000 the policy to address the noise impacts from existing roads. The policy has two strands: to retrofit barriers on existing roads and to re-surface local roads with low-noise material.
Some 40 road sections with noise exceeding 70 dB(A) have been identified as technically feasible for retrofitting noise barriers and have been included in the public works programme for implementation. The technical criteria for retrofitting include requirements that the barrier does not obstruct emergency access or fire-fighting; that it does not undermine road safety or impede pedestrian and vehicular movements; and that there be adequate space and structural capability (applicable to flyovers) for supporting the barrier or enclosure. Retrofitting noise barriers on 17 road sections have been completed. Follow-up action for noise barriers along other road sections are in progress. Upon the completion of all projects, over 30000 flats will have noise levels lowered by one to over 20 decibels and the majority of the beneficiaries along the roads will have noise lowered to below the 70 dB(A) limit.
Resurfacing Local Roads
Low-noise road surfacing materials can reduce noise by up to 3 dB(A) and 72 local road sections have been deemed suitable for the surfaces. In addition, in view of the improvement of the durability of the low noise road surface materials, 26 more local roads beyond the original engineering criteria have also been included in the trial programme. It is expected that the whole resurfacing programme will benefit about 60000 flats upon resurfacing of all the candidate roads.