Seeking input from those that know: Alexandria VA - Safety Zone

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AlexandriaUnion

New Member
I'm hoping someone with more knowledge about the FRA guidelines and railway safety than me can help explain why the railways passing through Alexandria, Virginia are designated Safety Zones. The local community there has been pushing for a Quiet Zone for years, but keeps hearing pushback from CSX about how it needs to remain a Safety Zone.

Some notes about Quiet Zone requirements: As far as I know, you need to ensure your at-grade intersections are sectioned off by double traffic bars at the crossing station to be considered for a Quiet Zone, but Alexandria doesn't even have any at-grade intersections, and all of the track is either elevated, fenced off, or going under major roads.

I've attached a google map's image of the area in question :
6kxF8.jpg


Can anyone fill me in on what I'm missing here? What precludes this area from becoming a Quiet Zone? If you're curious to look at it yourself, the zip code is 22314.
 

LoganTrackdog

New Member
The fact that the line runs right thru a major city might have some bearing on it, grade crossings or not.


I can see on the map there are stations, crossovers, yards, etc. Anytime there are train movements, there are whistle signals the engineer must give. Start, stop, back-up, etc. There are also people on the tracks, wildlife, etc. Many reasons to blow a whistle in a city that big.
 

AlexandriaUnion

New Member
Perhaps it is simply inconvenient for CSX to have a Quiet Zone in that location, so they make up excuses. If you really want the straight scoop, go around CSX to find the facts.

Here is a place to start the Quiet Zone process:
http://www.fra.dot.gov/rrs/pages/fp_1475.shtml
Thank you both for the feedback. I've been doing research on the FRA site and multiple other places that I have felt could be used as a source of precedence, such as San Diego's redesignation: http://www.quietzonesd.info/. A recent community forum discussion brought up points that the effort has previously been rejected by CSX, so I was interested to find some insight as to what is so special about this length of track that would prevent a redesignation where so many other urban areas have managed to succeed.

I should clarify that ALX (Alexandria's Union Station) is in the middle of this Safety Zone, but that isn't an automatic no-go is it? Other passenger stations exist among Quiet Zones, correct?
 

AlexandriaUnion

New Member
Using the FRA's website, I've found that all of the crossings in the entire city are listed as "Not public at grade crossing", including 860498W at Duke street. I tried using the Quiet Zone calculator, but because these are not eligible crossings due to them not ever even falling under a Quiet Zone requirement of being at-grade, it wouldn't let me use it.
 




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