The Noisiest Neighborhoods in New York, Seattle, and San Francisco

Illustration for article titled The Noisiest Neighborhoods in New York, Seattle, and San Francisco

Car alarms, jackhammers, barking dogs, drunken brawls outside your window—ah, the sounds of the city. Urban living comes with challenges, and annoying, loud noise is one of ‘em. But these maps show us which neighborhoods you’ll want to steer clear of in three major U.S. cities if you want a sound night’s sleep.

Real estate site Trulia spun up some GIFs that map the highest noise levels in New York, Seattle, and San Francisco. Data scientists used mapping software CartoDB and five years’ worth of noise complaints from each city to create the hotspots and how they evolved over that half a decade. Here’s what they found.

As we can see in SF, the noisiest neighborhoods look like the centrally located Tenderloin, business and bus-filled SOMA and the nightlife-rich Mission:


Next, the Seattle area. Unsurprisingly, downtown and the University district are two places to avoid if you want to live someplace not earplug necessary. Capitol Hill is pretty rowdy, too.

Finally, New York, which looks like it’s the most surprising. Everything’s pretty spread out: There’s not one super loud place. I guess that makes the entire Big Apple one big riotous hellhole? (Drag the map to see other boroughs other than Manhattan, which seem way quieter, except downtown Brooklyn.)


Whatever, it’s still home and I love it, annoying ice cream trucks and all. (Apparently I’m not the only one who hates those trucks and their off-key daily summertime blaring of “Pop Goes the Weasel”—Trulia mapped that data, too.)


Trulia says this method of data collecting has flaws: “There could be serial noise complainers, the data could be skewed by population, or there could be reporting biases.” But still “Regardless, if there were enough data, wouldn’t it be cool to see what it looked like?” Yup, it is. Cool, but reminds you that cities are an assault on eardrums.

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If you’re living in the center of a metro area like NY, SF, or Seattle and you expect peace and quiet you’re retarded. It’s like moving in the boonies in Wyoming and complaining that there are no 20 bars, 16 stores, 3 Costcos, and 5 concert halls within a 2 mile driving distance from your home.