Acoustics, Vibration, Greenhouse Gases and Air Quality

WSP USA calculates and addresses the noise, vibration, air quality, energy and greenhouse gas impacts of both vertical (buildings) and horizontal (roadways, rails, etc.) infrastructure projects during both the construction and operational phases of a project. Our acoustical design services focus on maximizing the intelligibility of speech, ensuring high quality of amplified audio, as well as reducing the negative impact of reverberation, echo, sound transmission between spaces, and overall background noise.

Protecting the Environment

Our acoustics practice is one of the largest in the industry and is passionate about not just building acoustics but also noise control applied on protection of natural environment and health and safety for mining, maritime, industry, energy and infrastructure projects. Our clients include state, local and national government agencies, private developers and corporations. Our staff performs the investigation, measurement, analysis, and modeling of project generated changes in pollutants, greenhouse gases, noise and ground and structure-borne vibration. Our specialists develop regulatory schemes, mitigation measures and engineered approaches for controlling such pollution as well as enhancing air-quality and acoustical performance. Utilizing a comprehensive suite of state-of-the-art acoustics, 3-D and air quality modeling tools, our team provides accurate and realistic information about project effects to decision-makers, stakeholders and the general public.

In addition, we prepare and support Environmental Impact Statements and Environmental Assessments, testify on behalf of clients, lead professional organizations and committees, develop nationally accepted models and help develop local regulations. Our in-depth technical knowledge, coupled with our problem-solving approach, helps guide clients through the necessary regulatory processes needed to successfully plan, build and operate their projects.

Expertise for every building

Every building is different and we provide the acoustics services for all of them, including very special spaces such as schools, laboratories, theaters or historic structures as well as complex hospital buildings that require careful, strategic design to address the acoustics in a multitude of different spaces and functions.

Trends evolve, such as the increasing use of timber, and we embrace changes and innovate accordingly. For example, the move towards open plan offices and space use flexibility in commercial buildings, have made acoustics more important in employee satisfaction. In healthcare facilities, while the link between sleep quality and recovery is evident, confidentiality in wards and patient rooms also needs to be taken into account. We often use sound masking systems to artificially raise ambient noise level within a space (white noise). It provides the benefit of speech privacy while reducing sleep disturbance.

We have provided acoustical design for numerous tall buildings around the world and are experienced in developing different solutions for a building when its structure changes from concrete to steel. Our specialists advise on what sound insulation is required between a mixed-use scheme’s different functions, such as retail, leisure, offices and residential apartments, and how to control noise and vibration from entire floors of mechanical and electrical plant to highly noise-sensitive spaces directly adjacent.