NEW ORLEANS - Today, the Council passed a resolution (R-21-309) requesting the Department of Transportation Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), which governs the safety of the nation’s railroad system, to establish a process for quiet zones in an effort to provide relief from the routine sounding of horns to nearby local communities. This process only allows public authorities to create quiet zones, meaning surrounding neighborhoods and residents desiring them are dependent upon local leaders to complete all the necessary steps, which include financing, installing necessary warning signs and required signage, and adequately notifying all involved stakeholders.
The resolution also urged the City of New Orleans to initiate efforts to create quiet zones in neighborhoods along the Mississippi River from Audubon in District A to the Bywater in District C. Residents, businesses, and institutions located in neighborhoods along the Public Belt have long sought relief from the ongoing noise disruption caused by passing trains and horn soundings. They deserve support from the City in finding a solution. Therefore, the Council is asking the City of New Orleans to either initiate or continue with current efforts to create the requested quiet zones in these neighborhoods and find and/or dedicate the necessary public and private resources.
“As a major port city, with access to six major railroads, we have to find the right balance for residents who deal with daily delays from rail crossings and noise throughout the day and night. The FRA is already doing the groundwork to mitigate some of these issues with studies across the city," said District "C" Councilmember Kristin Gisleson Palmer. "That’s why I’ve drafted this resolution asking for an update that we can share with our residents, who are affected across the City but particularly along the river in Council Districts A, B, and C."
"We have been working with residents, the Administration, and the Federal Railroad Administration on this issue," said District "A" Councilmember Joe Giarrusso. "With so many people working from home now, quality of life issues are even more noticeable. We look forward to helping solve this noise problem for residents in District A."
"The quality of life of our residents is integral to the vitality of our neighborhoods. My office has received complaints and concerns from residents and businesses about these disruptive noises. We are happy to join in supporting this path forward and work with the administration to establish quiet zones in line with federal regulations. I am committed to these efforts that enhance and increase the everyday enjoyment of our city," said District "B" Councilmember Jay H. Banks.