August 15, 2013 10:51:43 AM
A case for the closing of some railroad closings
There has been a great deal of confusion and lack of details regarding the proposed road closings at railroad crossings on Southside. I would like to share what I have learned with your readers in the hope of making sense of it.
The city has been in negotiations with Kansas City Southern Railroad officials for some time. The bargaining boils down to this: The railroad will pay the city $50,000 per street for the six streets to be closed. The state will fund the installation of crossing barriers and lights on the remaining six crossings. Once this is done, the area can be certified by the Federal Railroad Administration as a Quiet Zone. This means the train horn doesn't sound as it passes through Southside and past MUW. The city will spend some of the money on signage,road repairs, and such, but basically, we (the city) get to make money on the transaction.
The resulting noise reduction is a huge benefit to the people living for several blocks on either side of the tracks. MUW benefits greatly-and needs it! Student dorms are especially close to the tracks. The whole city benefits with property values not being depressed by proximity to the noise. Our city is not growing at present; but we can make it a safer, quieter and more desirable place to live and raise a family. We need to take advantage of this opportunity. It won't last long and it won't come again in our lifetime.
P.S. If you agree, show your support by attending the meeting at 5 this afternoon at the municipal building. Discuss this with your city leaders.
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