CORDIS - EU research results

Quiet city transport

Final Report Summary - QCITY (Quiet City Transport)

The general mission statement of this QCITY project was to develop an integrated technology infrastructure for the efficient control of road and rail ambient noise. A first major objective was to provide municipalities with methods and products (commercially available tools) to establish noise maps and action plans (Directive 2002/49/EC) and to provide them with a broad range of validated technical solutions for the specific hot-spot problems they encounter in their specific city.
The main points are:
- using existing data of cities or other agglomerations for the calculation of noise maps;
- modifying these and adapting them on the basis of the noise indicators Lden and Lnight;
- calculating the strategic noise maps and the levels at the façades and developing a system that can be implemented in software to evaluate and rank different alternatives for a given scenario on the basis of exposure - effect relations;
-investigating the recommendable noise reduction measures (general ones based on inventory and specific ones based on technological development in the project) taking into account acoustic effects, conditions for applicability and costs;
- planning examples based on scenarios of the cities involved with ranking of different alternatives.

A second major objective was to provide cities and network operators with solutions for specific local noise complaints.

Many of the specific noise reduction tools, which were validated in the project, will also be of utmost use for dealing with specific local traffic noise complaints the cities are faced with (local hot-spots). Typical examples are excessive tram squealing noise, noise and vibrations from switches and crossing, noise from busses at stops (busses braking and accelerating) etc. The validity of this mission statement has been verified and confirmed with cities and other EC projects (CALM).

The project's objectives are fully compliant with the requirements and needs of the final end-users: municipalities and urban transport operators. The municipalities and urban transport operators have a need in order to comply with EC-regulations, to create noise maps, identify and analyse the noise hot-spots and quiet areas and prepare proper action plans.

The project was structured into 5 sub-projects (SP), as follows:

SP1 - Noise mapping & modelling - Identification of noise hot-spots
The SP1 objectives were to obtain following deliverables:
- noise maps of the above cities (or part of) (situation 2005) were available from P1;
- a method for the automated identification of hot-spots with a specific score model was developed;
- detailed diagnostic of specific hot-spots related to the particular attention areas of each site or related to people complaints;
- an intermediate evaluation of the benefits from mitigation measurements was performed;
- action plans for the considered hot-spots in each participating city, based upon results obtained in other subprojects (SP2, SP3 & SP4);
- updated noise maps considering the solutions retained in the action plans for the above concerned cities (or part of).

SP2 - Perception of vehicle noise sources
The SP2 objectives were to obtain following information:
- identify / rank the perception of noise of various vehicles;
- conceptual designs and small prototypes of the most promising source related solutions such as measures that affect traffic control, driver behaviour, car ownership and mode shift.

SP3 - Vehicle/infrastructure interface noise
The SP3 objectives aimed to obtain following deliverables:
- ranking of solutions related to the vehicle/infrastructure interface;
- conceptual designs and small prototypes of the most promising solutions.

SP4 - Noise propagation and receiver parameters
The SP4 objectives aimed to obtain following deliverables:
- ranking of solutions related to propagation and receiver parameters;
- conceptual designs and small prototypes of the most promising solutions.

SP5 - Design and implementation of solutions at validation sites
The SP5 objectives were to obtain following deliverables:
- final detailed design of all solutions retained;
- implementation and validation of solutions in cities concerned;
- validation sites for dissemination and promotion purposes.

SP6 - Consolidation - Action Plans - Dissemination
In this project, sample action plans are scheduled to be established (required contents and description of measures). They will serve as example for the municipalities.

Many partners have good contacts with urban transport operators to promote the developed solutions directly with their existing customer base. UITP will also be updated on the available solutions in function of the progress. The 'research' community will also be informed, but this was secondary target in the dissemination process.