Quiet Train Zone Update – Not Good News

We have been working with UTA, Union Pacific, and UDOT for more than a year on the design, construction, and noticing process that we had understood would lead to implementation of a Quiet Zone* for the four downtown crossings (200 W, 500 W, 700 W and 900 W). Only as we issued the final Notice of Establishment in February of this year were we notified that, in fact, the process that we had diligently followed was not actually sufficient for establishment of the Quiet Zone.
While we feel somewhat like Charlie Brown after Lucy removed the football, we have no real choice now other than to start over with a new, somewhat more complex process. Our current understanding is that additional modifications of the physical street crossings will not be required, but that a more extensive application and approval process through the Federal Railroad Administration will be necessary.
All of us are sorry that this has not been resolved sooner. We are aware of how important this matter is to downtown residents impacted by the train horn noise. We will update you as soon as we have a more definitive schedule in place.

*A Quiet Zone is a railroad crossing where alternative safety measures have been implemented so trains do not need to blow their horns when approaching.

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  1. I would love to have a quiet zone at 820 north. With the growth in residential housing in that area I’m surprised it wasn’t included in the above list of quiet zones.

  2. Thanks for the update. I have been anxiously awaiting. I hope we get approved sooner than later. But we have to play by the rules I guess.

  3. I appreciate your candid-ness! It is an important issue, but things like this come up.

  4. Phil

    Very disappointing, especially since we already know the crossings are ready. Could we invite a representative of the Federal Railroad Administration to Provo where we could each whack him once with a stick? I think it would make me feel better.

  5. Just a reminder to the City: look at the history. Some of us have been working on things like this to better the downtown neighborhoods for over 23 years. In 2006 Maeser Neighborhood residents established “Quiet Trains for Provo” — T-shirts and all, with a picture of “Hush” — the train itself. This was headed up by Sherrie Spencer, downtown business owners and downtown residents — extensive research was done — Quiet Trains for Provo met monthly with Provo City staff and Department heads, as well as with representatives from UTA, Union Pacific, UDOT, and the Federal Railroad Administration. They were told that all the steps had been done, and the only delay might be an issue of money in relation to Front Runner. These people would probably appreciate more of an explanation. Unfortunately the ‘long haul’ commitment that it takes to solve some of these issues has often been, at best, not recognized and valued —-Last nights Council meeting was a sorry example of this — the lack of vision or even defensible rationale by the majority of the Council in relation to the paving issue — very short-sighted. Long involved residents and neighborhood chairs were virtually ignored. It takes vision AS WELL AS valuing resident’s many years of commitment and work. The City would be wise to learn more from those who have paid the price.

  6. I agree with Shawn C.
    I live by Seven Peaks and the train noise is very loud and disturbing when my family and I are trying to sleep.
    I hope we can all do whatever it takes to help ALL of Provo get sone peace and quiet.

  7. Thank you for this update, this is really useful information and it is good communication. Nice to know that you guys are looking out for we the people.

  8. Anonymous

    I’ve lived down here near 700 W. 500 S. for 10 years now. I have had some hope for more quiet trains as the intersection construction has been ‘completed’. . . unfortunately, the horns are even worse than before. They really lay on that horn!

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