Detours will be in place at various railroad crossings throughout the fall as new safety measurements are added and the city’s quiet zone nears completion.
Starting on Monday, Sept. 26, Main Street between Yuba Street and Dickman Road will be closed as contractors install non-traversable concrete medians that prevent vehicles from driving around the crossing gate arms. Detour signs will be in place.
Kendall and McCamly streets have just reopened following this work, which added non-traversable concrete medians and signage that will increase the safety at these railroad crossings in the absence of horns from approaching trains.
A quiet zone is a series of crossings at which trains are prohibited from sounding their routine horns; they still would do so in an emergency or in the case of a track obstruction. This is meant to decrease noise levels for homes and businesses near the tracks and increase the quality of life.
The city is working toward establishment of a quiet zone along approximately three miles of track through the downtown. This includes 11 crossings: Spencer Street, two at East Michigan Avenue, Elm Street, Main Street, South Avenue, Division Street, Fountain Street, Capital Avenue SW, McCamly Street and South Kendall Street.
The crossings at Spencer, Fountain and Division are now closed. That determination, the safest way to reduce risk at a railroad crossing, was made based on evaluation from various stakeholders and was approved by the City Commission.
It is anticipated that work on the Michigan Avenue, Capital Avenue and South Avenue crossings will take place during this year’s work season. Elm Street is scheduled for some upgrades this year and additional work next spring.