01 November 2008

In the Zones

Hillsborough Township announced this week that the town would be getting a little quieter after November 18. That's when Norfolk Southern will direct their engineers to begin honoring Hillsborough's railroad quiet zones at the Beekman Lane and Auten Road crossings.

The township installed raised medians and other road improvements at the grade crossings and has been waiting for the railroad to complete electronic safety improvements at the crossings. These additional improvements will signal engineers to sound their horns if a power outage or some other circumstance prevents the gates from coming down.

I know what you're thinking - we're only half finished. The road improvements have been completed at the Roycefield Road crossing, and the township is seeking an agreement with Norfolk Southern to install a quieter "wayside horn" at Valley Road - which doesn't lend itself to the raised median improvement.

Once the wayside horn is installed at Valley Road, the railroad will begin honoring the quiet zone at Roycefield. Then it will be as quiet as it was in 1864, before the first train steamed into town, and all of Hillsborough was one big quiet zone!

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