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Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(6), 1977-1990; doi:10.3390/ijerph8061977

Spatial Analysis of Urban Form and Pedestrian Exposure to Traffic Noise

1 Faculty of Management and Administration, Macau University of Science and Technology, Avenida Wai Long, Taipa, Macau, China 2 Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, University of Macau, Choi Kai Yau Building, Taipa, Macau, China Current address: Direccao dos Servicos de Proteccao Ambiental, Macau, China.
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 28 February 2011 / Revised: 26 April 2011 / Accepted: 25 May 2011 / Published: 3 June 2011
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In the Macao Peninsula, the high population density (49,763 inhabitants/km2) and the lack of control over the number of vehicles (460 vehicles/km) have led to an increase in urban pollution. To provide useful information to local government and urban planners, this paper investigates the spatial distribution of traffic noise in the Macao Peninsula. The interactions among urban form, traffic flow and traffic noise are addressed. Considering the spatial nature of urban geometry and traffic, a high-resolution GIS-based traffic noise model system is applied. Results indicate that the Macao Peninsula has fallen into a situation of serious traffic noise pollution. About 60% of traffic noise levels along the major pedestrian sidewalks in the evening peak hour exceed the National Standard of 70 dB(A) in China. In particular, about 21% of traffic noise levels along the pedestrian sidewalks are above the National Standard by 5 dB(A). Noticeably, the high pedestrian exposure to traffic noise in the historical urban area reduces the comfort of tourists walking in the historic centre and is ruining the reputation of the area as a World Cultural Heritage site.
Keywords: urban form; traffic volume; traffic noise; GIS urban form; traffic volume; traffic noise; GIS
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY) which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Sheng, N.; Tang, U.W. Spatial Analysis of Urban Form and Pedestrian Exposure to Traffic Noise. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8, 1977-1990.

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