Characterization of Quiet Urban Areas in Montreal

Authors: Deborah Delaunay*, INRS Urbanisation Culture Société, Philippe Apparicio, INRS Urbanisation Culture Société , Anne-Marie Séguin, INRS Urbanisation Culture Société, Jérémy Gelb, INRS Urbanisation Culture Société
Topics: Geography and Urban Health, Land Use and Land Cover Change, Quantitative Methods
Keywords: quiet urban area, calm, noise, GIS, spatial analysis, classification, urban planning
Session Type: Paper
Day: 4/10/2018
Start / End Time: 4:40 PM / 6:20 PM
Room: Galerie 3, Marriott, 2nd Floor
Presentation File: No File Uploaded


The Quiet Urban Area concept arose from European Community Directive 2002/49/EC relating to the assessment and management of environmental noise. Quiet urban areas are usually considered to be remarkable spaces that should be protected for their low level of noise and their physical and functional qualities favourable to the well-being of urban populations.
While the definition of quiet urban areas is a matter of some discussion, we propose here an operationalization based on quantitative criteria in order to quickly and accurately identify quiet areas in Montreal. We thus consider quiet urban areas to be open spaces characterized by a sound level lower than 55 dB(A), a minimum size of 1,000 square metres, and a site some distance away from noisy infrastructures (more than 300 metres away).
In Europe, recent research reveals the existence of several types of quiet zones characterized by certain urban forms and distinctive practices. The aim of this study is therefore to classify preselected quiet areas in Montreal (n=1,795) in order to highlight their specificities and to promote their protection and planning. To do this, several types of spatial data were used: noise map, vegetation index, infrastructure and cadastral data integrated into GIS, etc. Next, to analyze the specific features of quiet areas, a K-means was computed for these indicators.
The preliminary results show that quiet urban areas can be classified into several main types: green quiet urban area, recreational quiet urban area, residential quiet urban area, etc.

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