Noise is one of major annoyances in modern life. Studies have shown that the most pervasive sources of noise in our environment today are those associated with transportation, among which highway traffic noise is a dominant one. Traditional highway noise barriers are solid obstructions built along the sides of the highway, at an average cost of 1 million dollars per mile. In this paper, a new design was proposed, based on the phononic band gap phenomenon. The new design uses either a hollowed wall structure or an array of discrete columns in place of a solid wall. It is anticipated that such new designs will provide more effective noise shielding at the target frequency range, and yet reduces the structural requirement for the foundation support of the barrier wall. Preliminary simulation results are presented for a number of different configurations of the wall designs, and their relative advantages and shortcoming are compared.

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