Corinth ‘quiet zone’ proposal moves forward

town_corinth_greenBy Lena Mitchell

Daily Journal Corinth Bureau

CORINTH – An upcoming public hearing will let residents weigh in on implementing a railroad “quiet zone” in Corinth after a hearing was approved Tuesday by city leaders.

The quiet zone would apply to crossings for Norfolk Southern Railway that operates east-west freight train traffic through the city and would not affect the Kansas City Southern rail yard, said Dave Huwe, city director of community planning and development.

The hearing date will be set after conferring with state transportation and railroad officials.

A quiet zone means trains would no longer routinely sound their horns when approaching roadway-railroad street level crossings. However, engineers would not be prevented from sounding the train’s horn during an emergency or if an obstruction is seen on the rails.

Corinth has six crossings that would be included in the quiet zone, from North Parkway Street on the east side of the city to the Smithbridge Road crossing to the west, and Huwe said the transition would cost about $74,000, part of which would be paid by Norfolk Southern.

After discussions with the Mississippi Department of Transportation, Huwe said one rail crossing at Madison Street would need to close, and two other streets which already are one-way in parts of downtown would need to be converted to one-way at the south end where the railroad crossings are.

The two streets affected for one-way traffic are Franklin Street southbound and Taylor Street northbound.

The advantage of making each of the two streets open to one-way traffic only is that the cost of installing crossing safe upgrades would be lower, Huwe said.

New signage and traffic control devices would be installed, including crossing arms that extend all the way across both sides of the road to prevent vehicles from driving around them.

lena.mitchell@journalinc.com