Sustainable noise abatement along motorways in Germany – an empirical study in the municipality Frasdorf (Bavaria)
As part of the planned expansion work of the motorway A8 between Rosenheim and Salzburg and the associated legal opportunity to develop new traffic noise protection measures, this study investigated properties of sustainable noise abatement in a community next to the A8. A two-stage empirical survey was conducted integrating a citizen and an expert Delphi survey. The results show that the noise from the motorway heavily affects the quality of life in health, economic and ecological respects. Sustainable noise abatement should take into consideration ecological and social aspects like landscape integration and contribution to local development due to the unique location of the municipality. Enclosed motorway canopies are particularly beneficial to meet these criteria. The costs for sustainable noise abatement measures should be weighted as less important; however, financial costs are crucial for the federal government due to the requirements of the Federal Pollution Control Act. Hence, residents and experts assume that noise barriers as the cheaper noise abatement measures will be implemented. However, the results of the study and the latest developments in the expansion plans suggest that the implementation of enclosed motorway canopies, which go beyond the legal requirements, is feasible through extensive citizen participation and community-specific planning.