Trackside residents in Middle Village and Glendale will soon have some relief from the noise and stench associated with garbage-laden freight trains headed out of New York City.
The CSX Freight Corp. has agreed to remove equipment used to pressurize brakes at a location just northeast of 69th Place and replace it with one 600 feet away off 69th Street near All Faiths Cemetery.
A secondary pressurizing station for peak capacity operation will be about 450 feet away from the present site.
And while there still are some noise issues to be discussed, local officials are calling it a win. Sort of.
“It’s an improvement over what we actually have now,” said Robert Holden, president of the Juniper Park Civic Association. “Moving this away from homes is a better alternative. What we have now is unacceptable.”
He does not know if the move will eliminate all residents’ concerns, or create new ones. He said the new sites are actually closer to some businesses.
“Right now we’ve gotten a problem literally out of people’s back yards,” Holden said.
In a statement issued after a community meeting to discuss the changes last week, state Sen. Joseph Addabbo Jr. (D-Howard Beach) said the deal was a result of marathon negotiations involving himself, Assembly members Andrew Hevesi (D-Forest Hills), Mike Miller (D-Woodhaven), Marge Markey (D-Maspeth) and Councilwoman Elizabeth Crowley (D-Middle Village).
Addabbo said addressing the concerns of nearby residents and businesses was one of the most frustrating issues he and his staff have ever dealt with.
“We have worked many hours to provide the relief our people have asked for and deserve,” he said.
“Residents at 68th Place have dealt with the unbearable noise and foul smells caused by these freight trains for too long,” Crowley said in the joint statement.
Holden next wants the railroad to eliminate wooden railroad ties treated with the preservative creosote, which he said can be smelled throughout the area and can harm children, the elderly and those with respiratory problems.