DB to install over 3,000 kilometres of sound barriers in current decade

Deutsche Bahn (DB) and the German federal government mark the April 27 International Noise Awareness Day with the goal of installing 3,250 kilometres worth of sound barriers through 2030. By 2050, that number should be doubled, the announced earlier on Tuesday.

That means more than 360 kilometres of track per year should be fitted with sound screens, panelling or other forms noise barriers. According to DB, its stated 2030 will be to the benefit of 800,000 people who live along or in the direct vicinity of railway lines.

In 2021, DB built 71 kilometres worth of noise barriers at an investment of 150 million euros. This helped reduce railway noise for around 32,800 people last year. The federal government contributed to the investment as part of its Voluntary Noise Abatement Programme (VNAP).

As part of the programme, some 2,100 kilometres of German tracks have been fitted with noise barriers since 1999. Over the past two decades, efforts have also been made to install special windows in buildings, homes and apartments close to the tracks. To date, the VNAP has resulted in an investment of around 1,75 billion euros.

Another 3,250 kilometres by 2050

“In order to achieve our climate protection goals in transport, we urgently need to expand and expand the rail network. Rapid expansion can only succeed with the necessary acceptance from the residents”, Parliamentary state secretary at the Federal Minister for Digital Affairs and Transport Michael Theurer said on the occasion of International Noise Awareness Day.

“We are making our trains quieter and consistently driving noise protection forward”, DB’s dedicated noise protection officer Andreas Gehlhaar added.

In the long term, DB and the federal government want to take noise reduction measures along 6,500 kilometres of track, ensuring peace of mind for another 800,000 people by 2050.

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Author: Nick Augusteijn

Editor RailTech.com

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