Value Engineering ‘Acoustics’ Into Projects


  • Michael Bolduc Parklane Mechanical Acoustics, CA
  • Viken Koukounian Parklane Mechanical Acoustics


It can be said that ‘cost’ is the most significant constraint in the construction or remediation of buildings. More specifically, a project’s budget is regularly overrun by its expenses—negatively impacting its [the project] health, as well as its various stakeholders (e.g., building professionals, engineering specialties, trades, and subcontractors). This is often the case in remediation efforts, such as Noise Abatement Action Plans (NAAP), where seemingly simple acoustical solutions, such as barriers and silencers, require complex engineering (e.g., the reinforcement of the base structure (e.g., roof) to support added weight and increased wind-loading, atypical conditions requiring deeper excavation for barrier footings, introduction of powered ventilation to alleviate significant pressure drop). The ‘hidden’ costs associated with these critical multidisciplinary engineering challenges are not usually apparent during the initial estimating stage and can exceed the estimates for the acoustical scope. These financial risks increase proportionally with the complexity and size of projects, which may space many years and multitudinous sources. However, an initial feasibility study, by experienced professionals in complex multidisciplinary engineering, can define the necessary scope of work, to allow for more realistic budgeting to finance the project. This paper presents case studies demonstrating the benefits of conducting an initial design feasibility study to determine the required scope of work prior to the commencement of a project. In these examples, the implications of unknown or unforeseen costs are detailed, demonstrating the financial risks.

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How to Cite

Bolduc M, Koukounian V. Value Engineering ‘Acoustics’ Into Projects. Canadian Acoustics [Internet]. 2023 Oct. 9 [cited 2024 Jul. 20];51(3):154-5. Available from:



Proceedings of the Acoustics Week in Canada