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Quiet zone for Waco railroad crossings passed by city council

Posted at 8:39 PM, Nov 05, 2019
and last updated 2019-11-05 22:51:25-05

WACO, TX — The Waco City Council has voted to approve $1.5 million of tax increment financing on a mandatory quiet zone in downtown Waco.

Within the zone, train whistles would no longer blow at the 10 railroad crossings between Peach Street and South 13th Street.

The City of Waco and Union Pacific have strategized on quiet zone plans for years.

"Our proposal at this point in time is to develop a quiet zone from Peach Street across the river and ending down at South 13th Street," said Amy Burlarley-Hyland, the Engineering Division Manager for the City of Waco.

The City voted on a plan to spend $1.5 million to fund a quiet zone that covers the 10 railroad crossings on the 2 mile stretch of track.

But federal regulations require safety measures be installed, something Waco lacks.

"I thought it was interesting that there was no rail or guard rail," said Lance Holloway, a concerned parent.

Among the changes Waco will see new gates, road striping, concrete barriers and pedestrian warnings.

"It's becoming much more of a tourist destination, and there are a lot more people living in the downtown area, so we need to adjust for the times," said Burlarley-Hyland.

"Yeah i think it's kind of dangerous," said Holloway, who added he wished there was a better heads up when a train is coming.

"It could use a warning light or something," said one local man.

More construction would be headed to the area as soon as spring of 2020.