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Author(s): Cecília Rocha
António Carvalho
Title: Urban planning and traffic noise in Portugal: how did we get here?
Issue Date: 2006
Abstract: As result of the European Directive 2002/49/CE (25th June 2002), the Portuguese government through a preliminary study made by the Portuguese Road Authority (EP Empresa Pública Estradas de Portugal) became aware of the road traffic noise present situation. So, it seemed important to question the influence of land use management on this issue.Over the past decades, the Portuguese cities have enlarged, mostly due to migration movements from the eastern to the western part of the country or even from the rural areas to the closest cities. At the same time, the construction of the Portuguese major road network saw a huge development mainly due to European Union founding. These two circumstances created complex land use dilemma. On one hand, there was the need to build good transportation infrastructures to allow people and goods movements and on the other hand the need to build more dwellings for the newest inhabitants. As the municipalities were not aware of this incompatibility on land use (noise versus housing) and thought the closest the housing area was to a highway junction the most excellent it would become, many urban planning errors emerged.On 1987, the first Portuguese Noise Code established some principles in order to prevent annoyance situations. It referred the need to make illegal the construction of sensitive buildings on noisy areas, except on the special condition of reducing the exterior noise either on the source or on the receptor (for instance, adapting the facade sound insulation to those circumstances) and with a special authorization of the government. As the enforcement of this Noise Code was not efficient and the land use management plans allowed the construction of dwellings, schools, hospitals, etc. on the vicinity of the major roads regardless noise levels, this problem become worst. On November 2000, a new noise code (DL 292/2000) was approved. This particular code switched responsibilities. On the previous one, the property owner (if on a noisy area) had to reduce the noise levels to be able to construct a dwelling there. On the present noise code, the responsibility on reducing noise levels exterior environmental noise relies on the infrastructures Authorities, which means the reversal of responsibility agent. As so, there are no restrictions on land use since those Authorities are required to take adequate measures to accomplish the new noise limits.As result of the European Directive and this noise code, the municipalities are requested to have zoning maps (sensitive and mixed areas), noise maps and noise conflict maps that should help on the development of new land use management plans. At the present time several municipalities are reviewing their territorial plans, which enlighten the actuality of this theme.This paper mentions the relationship between noise and land use planning in Portugal and states the reasons to be on this complex situation that may well be similar to many other countries at the same socio-economic development status.
Subject: Acústica, Gestão de transportes, Engenharia civil
Acoustics, Transport management, Civil engineering
Scientific areas: Ciências da engenharia e tecnologias::Engenharia civil
Engineering and technology::Civil engineering
Source: Proceedings of the Transport Research Arena Europe 2006
Document Type: Artigo em Livro de Atas de Conferência Internacional
Rights: restrictedAccess
Appears in Collections:FEUP - Artigo em Livro de Atas de Conferência Internacional

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