As part of an approval allowing Bangor University to re-develop an old building in the centre of the town into a student nightclub, numerous noise related planning conditions were placed on the venue. It was imposed that “any noise produced as a result of entertainment associated with the development should be at such a level as not to cause any increase in the ‘ambient noise levels’ as measured external to any nearby noise sensitive property”.
Following consultations with the University and project team, Sound Ceilings UK were employed by design and build contractor Kribensis Leisure Contracts Ltd to install a soundceiling as a solution to the potentially disastrous noise disturbance issue. A 42 tile system was installed in the venue. To blend in with the ‘black box’ look of the club, the ceiling was camouflaged in a black speaker cloth making it invisible. A sound limiter was also installed allowing the sound to be kept at the agreed levels (102db). Due to the tricky location of the building and stringent restrictions, extensive tests were undertaken by the 3rd party building consultants Atkins. An extract from the Atkins report which demonstrates the Sound Ceiling’s impact on the closest neighbouring property is highlighted below:
The results of the tests indicate that there was no increase in background noise level (LA90,T) at Trem Y Ddinas (neighbouring property) when the noise source was in operation. Furthermore, the 1/3 octave band noise levels are of a similar magnitude with and without the noise source in operation.
Subjectively, the noise source and associated noise egress was inaudible when stood in close proximity to the dwellings at Trem Y Ddinas. A degree of noise leakage was audible, although not significant, when stood close to the building in the vicinity of the dance floor area.
It should be noted that during the tests the building works were not fully complete i.e. internal doors were missing, acoustic seals not fully fitted, external windows not completely blocked with masonry and areas of roof tiling missing. Once the building is completely sealed and the internal works complete, this will serve to slightly increase the level of airborne sound insulation provided by the building envelope.