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City of Berlin - Senate Department for Urban Development and the Environment, Berlin

The Senate Department for Urban Development and the Environment keeps manifold relations to institutions and networks of the European Union. For example it has a intensive cooperation with European partner cities as Brussels, Madrid, Moscow and Paris. Also it is cooperating in the city network EUROCITIES.
In Berlin traffic is the main origin of noise. This high pollution shall be reduced with the development and implementation of noise reduction plans. Berlin, like many agglomerations in Europe, suffers from high noise pollution, in particular from road traffic. Noise levels above 55 dB(A) during night occur in about three quarter of the main road network with 300.000 people living there. During daytime 245.000 people are still affected by noise levels above 65 dB(A). Moreover, Berlin has the longest tram network in Germany, which adds to the noise exposure of residents together with the metro where it runs above ground. In particular during night time a lot of people are affected by rail traffic noise. So, the need for action is huge and likewise the playing field for application of new techniques and approaches to further mitigate noise levels.

Already a decade ago, Berlin's Environment Department launched a number of pilot projects in order to develop and implement noise abatement measures. Later in 2008, a comprehensive noise action plan was drawn up. Berlin declared 70 dB(A) at day and 60 dB(A) at night as the prior target (to avoid health risk) and 65 dB(A) at day and 55 dB(A) at night within health provision. By setting out a wide spectrum of different measures the plan points to many different actions to effectively combat noise from traffic. At the same time noise action planning has sometimes reached itÕs limits because of itÕs complexity and of the large number of stakeholders with many conflicting goals and interests.

A new noise action plan for 2013 is in work. The public participation will be conducted as a moderated online dialog. The Noise Action Plan does not stand alone. It is to be understood as an integral part of many urban plans as land use plans and urban and traffic planning. Especially the Municipal traffic Master Plan pursues a variety of planning approaches that show synergies and common aims with the noise action plan. The aspects elaborated in the Noise Action Planning to assess noise exposure are integrated in the land use planning.

Involved People

Dorothea Salz


City of Berlin - Senate Department for Urban Development and the Environment

TEL.: +49 (0)30-9025-2293


Last modified: 03 Oct 2013 -