Noise Impact Assessment
The assessment of noise impacts from hospitality and entertainment venues typically requires the consideration of noise emissions from vehicle activities, loading dock activities, mechanical plant and equipment, clean-up activities, entertainment and patrons. While the assessment of most of these noise emission sources is straight forward, specialist acoustic design to contain entertainment noise and patron noise is necessary. Due to ventilation requirements of designated outdoor smoking areas (DOSAs), those areas cannot be fully enclosed which limits the amount of noise attenuation that is possible. Hence the best location of outdoor areas (and in particular DOSAs) must be advised by an acoustic expert early-on in the design process.
When designing a venue to contain entertainment noise the "weakest link" analogy needs to be applied, whereby the overall ability of the building to contain entertainment noise is limited by the sound reduction performance of the weakest element making up the external building structure. Determining what the weakest link is not straight forward due to the spectral composition of entertainment noise, which usually has most of its sound energy concentrated at low frequencies. A venue that is not designed by an acoustic expert may be unable to host the type of entertainment desired by the licensee, impacting upon its appeal to the general public.
Entertainment Noise Testing
Entertainment noise testing is required by licenced premises in Queensland to derive the allowable source level(s) that ensure compliance with the limits specified by the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation. Different limits apply before 10:00pm and after 10:00pm, with the after 10:00pm limits usually more restrictive. The resulting allowable source levels are specific to the entertainment system and venue configuration.
The Director of SoundBASE Consulting Engineers, Michael Hayne, has prepared noise impact assessments, provided design advice and conducted entertainment noise testing at a number of venues, including:
- Dutch Courage, Fortitude Valley
- Gladstone Entertainment Centre, Gladstone
- The Avenues Hotel, Thuringowa
- Corbett and Claude, Brisbane City
- Waterloo Hotel, Newstead
- Highfields Tavern, Highfields
- Noosa Heads Surf Lifesaving Club, Noosa
- Novotel Twin Waters Resort, Twin Waters
- Redcliffe Cultural Centre, Redcliffe
- Trader Dukes, Caboolture
A summary of Michael's hospitality project experience can be downloaded here.
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