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Swindon Set For Solar Sound Barrier

Swindon Set For Solar Sound Barrier

Swindon Solar Sound Barrier

Swindon may not be seen as the sexiest destination on the planet but a new proposed project will put the roundabout mecca on the map in a very cool way indeed.

Residents living near a busy dual carriageway near the Wiltshire town have been complaining about noise from the road for years. The Highways Agency attempted to fix the problem and built wooden barriers along parts of it in 2009, but there are still significant gaps along the road leaving people subject to consistent noise.

But a new innovative idea is bringing hope to the  earplug-wearing dwellers. Local councillors are proposing to fill the gaps with solar sound barriers, which, without wishing to state the obvious, are sound barriers combined with solar panels.

The theory is that the electricity generated eventually pays off the cost of installing and maintaining the barriers.

Er, that ladies and gentlemen sounds like unadulterated genius.

Local Councillor Dale Heenan, who is also the cabinet member for strategic planning and sustainability, said: “The idea behind this campaign is simple – let’s combine solar panels with a sound barrier to build a solar sound barrier.

“The sale of the electricity generated by the panels could cover the cost of building and maintaining the sound barrier. A win-win situation for everyone.

“This approach has been successfully implemented across France, Germany and Italy. However, it has never been built before in the UK. When I first came across the idea on holiday it made sense.”

The Highways Agency have agreed for a team of people to look at the feasibility, and it is hoped that businesses and residents will get behind the campaign.

Councillor Hurley said: “Noise from the A419 is an issue which is regularly raised by residents when we knock on doors, but it is probably the hardest for us to do something about as we know the Highways Agency will not fund any further work on the sound barriers which were built in 2009.”

Read the original from DAS Technology here.


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