A field experiment on the impact of sounds from a jet-and-basin fountain on soundscape quality in an urban park
2014 (English)In: Landscape and Urban Planning, ISSN 0169-2046, Vol. 123, 49-60 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
A field experiment was conducted to explore whether water sounds from a fountain had a positive impact on soundscape quality in a downtown park. In total, 405 visitors were recruited to answer a questionnaire on how they perceived the park, including its acoustic environment. Meanwhile the fountain was turned on or off, at irregular hours. Water sounds from the fountain were not directly associated with ratings of soundscape quality. Rather, the predictors of soundscape quality were the variables Road-traffic noise and Other natural sounds. The former had a negative and the latter a positive impact. However, water sounds may have had an indirect impact on soundscape quality by affecting the audibility of road-traffic and natural sounds. The present results, obtained in situ, agree with previous results in soundscape research that the sounds perceived particularly roadtraffic and natural sounds explain soundscape quality. They also agree with the results from laboratory studies that water sounds may mask roadtraffic sounds, but that this is not simple and straight forward. Thus sound should be brought into the design scheme when introducing water features in urban open spaces, and their environmental impact must be thoroughly assessed empirically.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2014. Vol. 123, 49-60 p.
Environmental impact, Soundscape quality, Urban open spaces, Water sounds, Urban design
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-102282DOI: 10.1016/j.landurbplan.2013.12.005ISI: 000331990600006OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-102282DiVA: diva2:710071