CRETE | The Village Board has approved creating two “quiet zones” at intersections where freight trains pass through neighborhoods.
Village President Michael Einhorn and trustees have discussed the idea repeatedly in recent months as a way to reduce the noise from freight trains.
Last week, trustees voted 6-0 in favor of the idea, which still needs permission from the Federal Railroad Administration. The measure creates the zones where Union Pacific Railroad tracks intersect with Exchange Street and Crete-Monee Road. It calls for engineering studies to take place for the zones once federal approval is granted.
Zones would consist of lane delineators that would make it difficult for motorists to drive around lowered crossing gates, thereby reducing the need for passing freight trains to blow their horns as a warning.
Purchase of the materials needed for the delineators is expected to cost about $46,000, said Einhorn, adding that the village’s Public Works crews likely would erect the quiet zones.
Will County Engineering Department officials will review the village’s plans, according to the intergovernmental agreement.
County approval is required because Exchange Street (County Highway 49) and Crete-Monee Road (County Highway 21) are under county jurisdiction.
Einhorn said it has not been determined how to pay for the zones. He said the Village Board likely would have to vote again to consider the measure if funding the quiet zones would need a tax or fee increase for village government
In other business, the Village Board voted to approve the spending of $7,500 in funds from state motor fuel taxes for the purchase of rock salt. Officials said the amount is to cover the cost of salt used during the past winter in excess of what was originally purchased by the village to help keep streets clear of ice for motorists.
Trustees also voted in favor of an agreement by which equipment owned by the Cook County Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management can be used by the Will County-based municipality in cases of emergency or disaster.