North Yorkshire’s £ 1bn A66 project slated for the technology’s first global use

NATIONAL Highways has announced the world’s first use of innovative technology to enable the public to hear anticipated traffic noise in an ongoing £ 1bn project consultation.

The project is proposed as the largest investment on the northern road network in a generation and is, so far, three weeks away from its six-week consultation.

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November 6 will mark the last day for the public to express their views on plans to improve the A66 between the M6 ​​at Penrith and the A1 at Scotch Corner.

The plans aim to double the remaining sections of the route and improve a number of key junctions.

National Highways says some communities will benefit from the noise reduction and, in a world first for a consultation on a program, it has developed SoundLab technology.

The technology, designed by Arup, gives people the ability to listen to expected noise levels and hear road noise with and without the proposed upgrades, such as special coatings and noise barriers.

The road infrastructure company and Arup hope the technology will be nominated for a prestigious honor at the John Connell Awards, run by the Noise Abatement Society and known as the “Noise Oscars”.

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Monica Corso Griffiths, National Highways Design and DCO Manager for the A66 Northern Trans-Pennine Project, said: “I had the pleasure of hearing the SoundLab in action at recent public engagement events in Kirkby Thore. and Warcop.

“It helps people understand the potential impact of program options and what can be done to mitigate it.

“I am delighted that we are now deploying this revolutionary kit during the statutory consultation period and I urge the public to check it out.”

Transport Minister Baroness Vere, who attended a demonstration of the SoundLab at the consultation launch event last month, said:

“I am delighted to see National Highways working so closely with Arup on this cutting edge technology. The A66 is poised to have a transformational impact on the region and I encourage anyone interested to get involved in this important consultation.

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Martin Butterfield, deputy director of noise and vibration delivery at Arup, said: “SoundLab provides users with objective information in a simple and accessible format so that they can form their own opinions on what they are hearing.

“In a world first for a project consultation, this technology provided National Highways with a range of sound demonstrations representing all areas of the A66 project without the need to measure sound and record audio and video footage in large numbers. different environments.

“The sound demonstrations bring to life the noise modeling results included in the preliminary environmental information report – which is one of the consultation documents available – and, in another first, are available online.”

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