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Marshfield may expand quiet train zones

MARSHFIELD, Wis. (WSAU) -- City of Marshfield officials will look at expanding “24 Hour Quiet zones” along Veterans Parkway on the city’s southeast side that would prohibit the sounding of train horns in residential areas. Director of Public Works Dan Knoeck says increased railroad traffic is affecting homeowners near the Palmetto Avenue and Eighth Street crossings. According to Knoeck, “Train activity has picked up on that spur and is sometimes occurring during the overnight hours and consequently we’ve received some complaints and requests to consider the expansion of our 24 hour quiet zone.” Alderman Tom Buttke sits on the city’s Board of Public Works, and is one of the city officials who questions how many people are affected by the noise, and whether silencing train horns is a safety hazard. The issue now goes to the city’s Capital Improvements Committee to consider whether funding for the project is feasible. The primary cost to the city would be a consultant’s fee of around $7,000 for oversight of the evaluation and application process required by the Federal Railroad Administration.