The noisiest cities and municipalities in Switzerland revealed

The noisiest cities and municipalities in Switzerland revealed

Construction projects, engine sounds and noisy nightlife are just some of the things you may have to contend with if you are living in an inner-city in Switzerland. However, research done by Zürcher Kantonalbank shows that, when it comes to noise, some Swiss cities are more peaceful than others. 

Geneva is the loudest city in Switzerland, Bern is quietest

As part of a large survey on housing, Zürcher Kantonalbank (ZKB) analysed Swiss rentals to find out more about street noise across the country. The ZKB survey found that Geneva, Lugano and Lausanne face the highest levels of noise pollution in Switzerland, with a shockingly low 4 percent of people in Geneva classed as living in a “quiet area.” 

In Lugano, the city with the second-highest level of noise pollution, around 20 percent of addresses are affected by street noise of more than 60 decibels, which is akin to having a lawnmower turned on 10 metres away. 

By contrast, life in Aarau, Winterthur and Bern is much more peaceful. These cities have been successful in taking a stand against noise, using special road coatings to minimise traffic sounds and creating designated green spaces.

Bern is quietest, but Switzerland's loudest street is there

Despite Bern being the quietest city in Switzerland, the city is actually home to the noisiest road. The Giacomettistrasse lies at the Bern-Ostring junction of the motorway, which explains the fact that residents living in the area are subjected to 71 decibels of noise on a daily basis. 

The loudest spots in each city tend to be around major traffic axes, hence why many politicians are frequently discussing the implementation of lower speed limits across the country. ZKB have found that although electric vehicles are an effective way of reducing engine noise, the loudest noises actually come from the cars driving along the asphalt itself. This is why the survey recommends a switch to the "Tempo 30" plan across the country. 

Emily Proctor


Emily Proctor

Emily grew up in the UK before moving abroad to study International Relations and Chinese. She then obtained a Master's degree in International Security and gained an interest in journalism....

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