35W noise walls cause clamor in southeast Minneapolis

  • Article by: STEVE BRANDT , Star Tribune
  • Updated: December 13, 2011 - 11:09 PM

Residents say there are flaws in voting process for I-35W option.

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lorenpillerDec. 13, 1111:20 PM

Let's not call them noise barriers. Call them noise bouncers. They reflect the sound beyond the homes that are in the shadow of the "barrier" onto the homes a block or so away. Does anyone working at the Dept. of Transportation have any idea how sound works? Has anyone proposed an anechoic designed "barrier" to absorb the sound rather than reflect it?

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unreal12Dec. 13, 1111:23 PM

Sounds like Acorn is active again relative to voting issues!

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huggybear28Dec. 14, 11 6:39 AM

How ironic, people normally BEG for noise walls and complain when they do not get them. As usual, another MANDATED policy by the federal government. @ lorenpiller, when noise wall are proposed, DOT tells residents who live adjacent to the wall that noise levels will probably go down, but their neighbor who lives across the street is told the change in sound really will be negligible. They were never meant to block sound, but are pushed for aesthetics and to mitigate sound for properties adjacent to freeways.

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spendmoreDec. 14, 1111:03 AM

...in particular, the provision that those who don't vote will be counted as votes in favor of the $5 million, 20-foot-high walls. - This is what we have come to... Individuals don't know what is best for them, government does. I am sure they will come up with some magic number of non-voters to pass their "Vision". What a joke, welcome to serfdom.

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momsphatboiDec. 14, 11 7:26 PM

remember when 35W was first built? and we had those chain link fences & trees? and all demanded barriers. there was a reason for that. if you dont take them now, they should make you wait 30 years after you bag for them.

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doronclarkDec. 14, 1110:09 PM

I attended tonight's meeting was pleased to hear that this process would be put on "pause" so the state and county could figure out how to address concerns. The most astounding piece of information I picked up tonight is that you only get a vote if the project reduces noise on your property by 5 decibels. That sounds good except there are tens of property that will abut the wall who do not get a vote because their noise abatement will drop less than 5 decibels. For instance, the 7XX block of Buchanan will have wall and no one on that block will get a vote. The 11XX block of 11th Ave SE had the same issue. In fact, only 7 addresses (6 in Talmadge Green and 1 industrial property) will determine if a sound wall will run along 2 blocks of 11th Ave SE in front of 20-25 addresses.

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ThegonagleDec. 15, 1112:21 AM

A little consistency would be nice. For an anti-example, if you don't vote vote on a state constitutional amendment, that gets counted as a vote against. Hmmm... Just trying to think about the best way, and maybe one size doesn't fit all. But federal laws basically favor the walls, and if I understand correctly, the state can get federal reimbursement for unfunded mandates like this, and building the wall helps the economy go round, so, I don't know, build the wall? Yeah, build that wall and be happy, because if you turn it down now, but want it later, you're going to kind SOL. I grew up in Como, so my advice is build it, and if you want a view of the fireworks, walk a block or two. You'll see them.

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liberaleliteDec. 15, 1111:48 AM

@Thegonagle, I think the reason is because the FHWA and USDOT standards exist to address environmental concerns, whether we agree with them or not. Therefore the burden is on the neighborhoods to prove that enough of the neighbors *don't* want the environmental remediation. I think that's the reasoning here. Not saying it's right.

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liberaleliteDec. 15, 1111:50 AM

Arvonne Fraser (quoted) is a great leader and married to Don Fraser, former city mayor and congressman. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_M._Fraser

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liberaleliteDec. 15, 1111:52 AM

Now this fourth lane project is more common sense than many others (especially projects like new freeways outside the beltway) but we still need to be careful about expanding freeway capacity. All it does is induce demand for the capacity, since it will now be easier for people to get north on 35W. It's a costly cycle that gets us nowhere.

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