sound advice


Babich Acoustics 2017 Year in Review

This year has been a great year for business! We have seen a lot of new projects in the corporate, hospitality/retail, and higher education. Other projects include hospitals, residences, and a museum.

Sound isolation and speech privacy in corporate offices is one of the primary acoustics concerns in 2017. Businesses expanding has caused a lot of new office fit outs in the Pittsburgh region. Collaborative work environments have replaced traditional private offices. However, if the open offices are too quiet, this can cause a reduced amount of productivity. A cultural shift combined with a good design that includes more private meeting spaces and areas to take private calls has been the best way to solve the increased acoustical concerns. Glass in meeting spaces increases natural light and makes spaces less claustrophobic, but can only work successfully in combination with sound masking in adjacent spaces.

With the Facilities Guidelines Institute (FGI) implementing sound and vibration requirements in 2010, this has caused a lot of attention to acoustics in hospitals. Space planning has become one of the biggest concerns for restful sleep in patient rooms. Determining where medical staff meeting spaces are located affects the noise level in corridors outside of patient rooms. Reducing the amount of noisy medical devices and monitoring systems is also important. Training of staff to be attentive to using quiet voices and minimizing discussions outside of patient rooms should be a priority for all hospitals.

We have seen a rise in the City of Pittsburgh and surrounding municipalities paying attention to how industrial and commercial development affects noise levels in neighboring residential communities. This involves community noise surveys and calculations prior to the implementation of new industrial or mechanical equipment that is adjacent to residential communities.

Thank you to all of our clients and business partners for a great 2017! To all kids from 1 to 92, we wish you a safe, happy, and healthy holiday season and new year!