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Residents Make Noise on Tappan Zee Bridge Barriers

Tarrytown residents were given the chance to learn about potential noise barriers and speak with state officials. Photo Credit: Meredith Shamburger
Several different designs could be used if the noise barriers are approved. Photo Credit: Meredith Shamburger

TARRYTOWN, N.Y. – Tarrytown residents are questioning how the state expects them to vote on proposed noise barriers for a new Tappan Zee Bridge without seeing designs and visual projections. They say they don't have enough information to vote.

“What's the downside of delaying the vote?” Quay Board of Managers President Alice Goldberg asked, saying residents could not make an informed decision by the May 24 deadline.

More than 100 residents came to the Westchester Marriott hotel in Tarrytown Wednesday to learn about the proposed noise barriers. Goldberg and others wanted more answers about the visual impact of the barriers and how effective they would be at reducing noise.

Approximately 160 residents, including the Quay Condominiums, will be able to vote on the proposed barriers. One proposed barrier will be located both on the north side of the bridge, nearest the Quay. Another shorter barrier will be located west of Route 9 on the north side of I-87/I-287.

The noise barriers will be constructed after the new bridge is complete and will not be used to mitigate the noise impacts of construction. New York State Department of Transportation Project Director Michael Anderson said construction mitigation discussions will take place once a design-build team is selected.

Anderson assured residents at Wednesday's meeting that the state has heard their request for more information and that they are considering it. Anderson noted South Nyack residents also had the same complaints during a meeting held Tuesday to discuss noise barriers.

“We have to be careful that this impact is addressed in” the final environmental document, Anderson said, later adding, “We don't want to leave a hole in the document.”

Officials said a 50 percent majority of those who are able to vote is needed to approve the noise barriers. Without it, no noise barrier will be built. The new bridge is not expected to increase the noise levels, so officials noted the barrier would actually make it quieter than it is today.

Several residents from the Irving neighborhood south of the bridge came to Wednesday's meeting as well, although they will not get to vote on the proposed barriers. Irving Neighborhood Preservation Association President Tori Weisel questioned why noise barriers were not being proposed in her area.

“My house could be a toll booth,” she said.

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