The impact of Covid-19 on city noise measured by the N.Y.U. researchers

It seems that the Covid-19 pandemic influenced almost all aspects of human’s life. In this one case, described in New York Times, you might actually hear it’s impact on a big city. The recordings taken last year and this year shows how much the noise on once busy streets of New York has decreased.

Noise-monitoring microphones are wrapped in spikes to keep the pigeons away.
George Etheredge for The New York Times; photo from the article

The article describes a research carried out on the streets of lower Manhattan and presents a comparison of two sound samples – one recorded on Lafayette and East 4th Street in April 2019 and the other one recorded at the same location one year later – in the mid of the Covid-19 pandemic. The recorded sound level dropped as much as 5dB due to more empty streets and less traffic in the city. The decrease of street noise level has also been noticed in other big cities such as Singapore and London. The sounds that are less audible right now are the sounds strictly connected to human activities, such as transportation, sounds of sirens or human speech.
Interestingly, sounds that are still present in the city, like singing birds, are now perceived as louder than before the pandemic.

You can read full article and hear the recorded sound samples on NYT website:


back to all articles

Custom solutions
and services

Please contact us to inquire information about our custom solutions and services.

Get in touch

Work with us

If you’re looking to solve an existing challenge or capitalise on a new opportunity, please get in touch.

    see more see less

    We use cookies (technical and profiling cookies from us and third parties) on to provide you with a better online experience and to deliver you with online commercial messages tailored on your preferences. If you select “continue” or access any content of our website without customizing your choices, you agree to the use of cookies. Find out more about our cookie policy and how to refuse cookies by clicking here.