Posted: 21st March 2022

Why you should consider architectural acoustics when designing your new building

Building acoustics is a vital element of the design or refurbishment of many buildings. Sometimes, effective architectural acoustics are necessary to promote optimum levels of productivity in commercial premises, aid communication between individuals, or safeguard people’s health and wellbeing. Also, the way sound is transmitted is important in buildings that have a specific function, where incoherent or muffled sounds would be detrimental to service users. Architectural acoustics is an aspect that is often forgotten, but one that is best considered from the very beginning of any construction project.


What is acoustic design?

In some buildings, such as cinemas, theatres, and concert halls, effective acoustics are vital to ensure users enjoy an immersive experience. Acoustics – the science of sound – can determine how noise transmits inside a building. Good acoustic design can be achieved with careful and informed choices of design, materials, and construction techniques.

Beyond the entertainment industry, acoustic design is important in many buildings, such as offices, hospitals, residential, and schools, not only to minimise intrusive noise, but also to create a pleasant ambience in which to work and live. Consequently, good acoustics and noise control can have a positive impact on people’s health, wellbeing, and productivity and should be a key element of all new building and refurbishment designs.


What are the advantages of architectural acoustics when designing buildings?

The advantages of considering architectural acoustics are often related directly to the function of the building in question.  In schools, for example, effective acoustic design promotes higher standards of teaching and learning and better student behaviour.  In hospitals, ensuring appropriate internal noise levels can facilitate shorter recovery times for patients as the atmosphere is proven to be calmer and less stressful.

In studies, effective acoustic design has demonstrated that office noise control:

  • Reduces errors by 10 per cent.
  • Improves employees’ concentration by 48 per cent.
  • Lower employees’ stress by 27 per cent.

The benefits, therefore, are indisputable, but acoustic design requires the involvement of a qualified and experienced acoustic consultant.


Why work with an acoustic consultant when designing a building

An acoustic consultant possesses the experience and knowledge to foresee potential problems with the acoustics in a new building, even at the initial design stage.  This means practical and cost-effective solutions can be incorporated whilst balancing competing requirements.

Acoustic consultants…

  • Possess recognised degree-level and post-graduate or diploma qualifications in an appropriate area of acoustics.
  • Understand the legal frameworks governing building design and acoustics.
  • Work proactively with architects and designers to incorporate acoustic designs in plans.
  • Carry out accurate noise assessments and modelling to predict the impact of noise.
  • Contribute to applications for planning permission to increase the chances of a favourable decision from the Local Authority.
  • Can develop and implement specialist acoustic solutions for cinemas, classrooms, hospitals, offices, residential developments, and other areas.


Contact ACA Acoustics to discuss architectural acoustics on your next development

If you’re planning a new build or refurbishment of an existing building, please get in touch with ACA Acoustics today to find out how we could help you to achieve a good acoustic design.


Image Source: Unsplash

Posted By:ACA Acoustics