Acoustic Consultants: Kathryn Cheng and Forrester Jr

Interior Designers: D’Perception Pte Ltd

Acoustical Contract: Aural-Aid Pte Ltd

Our Acoustic Consultants help bring Stress Free Office Environments to the City

Creating a stress free space in today’s world can be hard to achieve these days; although hard, it is not impossible. Singapore’s Urban Redevelopment Authority (URA) is one of the spaces dedicated to accomplishing this. Our acoustic consultants were contracted by the URA to perform acoustic consulting and verification for their new recreational hub. There were 10 different types of rooms–which posed a unique challenge as each of the rooms came with its own acoustic requirements.

The Lounge

Stress Free Space - Main Lobby of URA Offices acoustically designed by our acoustic consultants

Stress Free Space – Main Lobby of URA Offices acoustically designed by our acoustic consultants

With the sole purpose of creating an enjoyable environment for employees to thrive, the lounge serves as a communal area for URA employees; a mixture of recreational and work-related facilities. This includes the kitchen/pantry which sits at one corner–with a space specifically designed to accommodate a gaming facility.

Some elements in the gaming facility feature a dartboard and a pool table, while the other corner boasts a projector screen.

In order to accommodate several collaboration booths, modular units allow the employees adequate privacy.

At a closer look, the visual design of the lounge creates a tranquil and peaceful atmosphere–projecting an optical experience similar to that of a lily pond. We suspended ceiling baffles which closely resembled the shapes of water lilies and also placed lily pad-shaped rugs on the floor. The sofas, with their rounded form, also echo the earthy colour of pebbles submerged at the bottom of a stream.

The main centerpiece of the room features a green wall studded with green acoustic foam dramatically backlit with LED lighting.

Acoustically, the lounge did not have to conform to a short Reverberation Time (RT) time since it was a shared space. The RT could be higher than the Training Rooms to make conversations indistinct.

Acoustic Consultant Recommendation

Our recommendations were to modify the design of the feature wall slightly. Since each piece of foam mounts on top of a plywood box, we requested perforations be drilled into the box; doing this essentially turned the entire wall into a trap for low to mid frequencies.

Results

Our RT test gave us a measurement of around 0.9 seconds at 1 kHz.

Training Rooms 1-3

These rooms were designed as classrooms for training purposes and, therefore, it was necessary that they achieved a high level of speech clarity. Since the rooms were all rectangular, we recommended cladding the rear and side walls with an acoustic polyester material.

We deliberately left the front wall (behind the speaker) untreated to makes it more reflective than the other three walls. This would aid the speaker in voice projection, with the sound reflections bouncing off the reflective front wall–making them well projected throughout the classroom. The cladding on the rear wall would then absorb the sound reflections, thereby eliminating any flutter echoes.

Results

The test measured an RT of 0.7 seconds at 1 kHz.

Karaoke Rooms 1&2

Our task here was to ensure both rooms had sufficient noise insulation. To do this, we checked for gaps in the AC ducting, ensured that the electrical outlets were staggered, and checked the sealing mechanism of the doors.

URA KTV Room

URA KTV Room

Our acoustic consultants recommended treating the interior with fabric panels to achieve a low RT. This room was on the dead side, with a measured RT of 0.3 seconds at 1 kHz. Specifically, for this Karaoke TV (KTV), a low RT was ideal to allow music emanating from the speakers. And the room was not coloured according to room acoustics.

In addition, singers also have the freedom to add electronic reverb to enhance their performance.

URA KTV Room overlooking the city

URA KTV Room overlooking the city

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