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Conrail, New Jersey town agree to quiet zones, quad gates

Written by William C. Vantuono, Editor-in-Chief

Officials in Woodbridge, N.J., say they’ve reached accord with Conrail to create “quiet zones” at four township grade crossings, which will include quad gates at two of the crossings, to resolve noise issues generated by increased rail freight activity.

A boom in the ethanol industry has boosted rail traffic for refineries in the township’s Sewaren neighborhood. "Because of increase in train activity, they’re blowing (the horn) five times during the day," said First Ward Councilman Charles Kenny, who has lobbied to get the quiet zones in his ward. "Six blocks away from my house, when I have the windows open, I can hear the train whistle from the first, second, and third crossings at one in the morning."

The zones will be installed at crossings on Woodbridge Avenue, Blair Road, Rahway Avenue, and St. Georges Avenue.The Woodbridge and St. Georges crossings each will sport quad gates. The Blair Road crossing will allow quieter whistle use under the agreement.