ETH Zurich – Institute for Urban Design
HIL H44.1 – Stefano-Franscini-Platz 5 – 8093 Zurich




The Noise Landscape

The Noise Landscape. A Spatial Exploration of Airports and Citie


Aircraft noise is heard over a large territory, across heterogeneous urban areas and landscapes, and in multiple municipalities, provinces, even nations. As one of the key effects of airport operations, it fundamentally alters conditions on the ground far beyond the airport fence. 


Around major hub airports, the combination of noise with the pull force of these key transport infrastructures shapes specific environments. These noise-affected spaces harbour peculiar forms of aviation-conditioned urbanity and play a crucial yet often underestimated role in their metropolitan regions. The growth of air travel has contributed to their worldwide emergence.


The Noise Landscape represents the first comprehensive study on these urbanized landscapes. Focusing on eight European case studies, it shows how Noise Landscapes developed into complex spatial and regulatory entities, through descriptions of their development and structure, photographic essays and maps. It gives a detailed and systematic account on how airplane noise affects urbanization on the ground. And it argues that Noise Landscapes are an invaluable resource for the future of our cities and an important design challenge for urban design in Europe and beyond.


Authors: Benedikt BoucseinKees ChristiaanseEirini KasioumiChristian Salewski.

With contributions by: Mark Michaeli, Peter F. Ortner, Andreas Schmitt, Joris Jehle.

Graphic design: Studio Joost Grootens

Published by: nai010 publishers

Rotterdam, September 2017

320 pages


Learn more at the dedicated website The Noise Landscape

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European Noise Landscapes and their respective cities


Local urban context and airport layout of Amsterdam Schiphol airport


Regional context and noise impact of Amsterdam Schiphol airport