If you are at home right now, what are the chances that some foreign sound is making its way into your ears?
Could you be listening to the sound of the next MRT train swooshing into the platform at this very moment? Or maybe the constant honks of angsty drivers in their posh cars revving through the highway…
Better still, you are one of the fortunate few who currently resides in a sizably secluded area, tucked away from all the hustle and bustle of modern day Singapore.
…In which case, this article probably isn’t for you.
Unless of course, the incessant chirps from an army of crickets slowly surrounding you, pincer-sharp teeth at the rea…ok you get our point.
For many of us, living next to the MRT station or a busy road is a requirement… something that we’ve paid good money for.
And why is that?
Well let’s face it. Most Singaporeans like us crave convenience.
The fastest way to get to work. The fastest route to the shopping mall. The fastest way home. Well, the list goes on.
Yet, while this might seem like a norm in such a fast-paced society (there’s only so much you can do in 24 hours), do you not often find yourself trying to ignore all the noise and sound of the traffic around you?
Well here comes the scary part (also the part where we burst your bubble to save your eardrums).
What many people don’t realise is that noise pollution brings with it a host of issues (and even the potential onset of dementia).
More likely than anything however, it will result in a variety of hearing problems for those involved – and unlike most other bodily injuries, we all know that hearing damage is irreparable!
Also, one important thing you should know: Hearing loss isn’t just ‘obtained’ (for lack of a better word) from sudden loud noises. It can also be attributed to constant environmental noise that builds up over years!
Furthermore, as Singapore is (simply put) one entire conjoined city, we can’t help the fact that we are regularly exposed to high noise levels.
A study done in 2017 found that Singapore noise levels during the day is 69.4 decibels. This is just shy of the limit of 70 decibels that has been set by the World Health Organisation!
It goes with saying then that living next to traffic heavy roads, MRT tracks, and construction sites (all the new launches) no doubt contributes to increased consumption of these high noise levels.
Thankfully, efforts have been made to combat these issues, with PBT Engineering recently awarded a contract to design and install 5.5km of railway noise barriers.
These installation plans are expected to span 16 locations. From Pasir Ris to Kembangan station along the East-West MRT Line and from Jurong East to Khatib stations along the North-South MRT Line.
Once completed in 2023, these noise barriers should bring down the noise levels by about 5 to 10 decibels (god save our ears)!
Now that you understand some of the implications that come with staying in a convenient location, we’ll like to courteously present you with our top 10 noisiest neighbourhoods in Singapore.
(Note: This study was done with 18,768 sound measurements that were recorded over a 2 and a half month period.)
Singapore Noise Levels: 10 Noisiest Neighbourhoods
Honestly, if I had to hazard a guess for the contender of ‘noisiest neighbourhood in Singapore’ before writing this, Orchard would have been by far and away, my top choice.
So imagine my surprise when Serangoon made it to the top of this list!
Guess it just goes to show that regardless of where you might be in Singapore, your ears will also have the potential of coming under attack (fire in the hole!).
Jokes aside, we sincerely hope you are now better equipped with the knowledge of how the most ‘harmless’ of noise levels can impact your hearing in the long run. If you are considering a future home purchase , be sure to make this a serious consideration for both you and your family.
At the end of the day, our health (and ears) is really our biggest asset to lose.
Next up: ‘Noise levels and what you can do about it!’