Point Defiance Bypass... NO!

This is a rant from a homeowner that's not happy about the Point Defiance Bypass...

As a home owner that sits just on the west side of the existing railway since 2007. Currently the trains that pass are mostly for military movements of equipment. This is just from what I see, I also see some cargo now and again. Both of these are very infrequent, not daily. Sometimes I won't notice a train for weeks at a time. It’s so infrequent that when one comes through I certainly know it, and it's VERY LOUD.

With this new Amtrak train going through multiple times a day and blaring horns I don’t see how I will not notice it. I have a sister in law that has this same train going through right next to her back-yard in Scio Oregon and its nearly intolerable, it shakes the house with its high speed and blaring horn. Conversations stop due to the noise, and that’s IN the house. It runs in the early AM times all the way to the very late hours. The times I've stayed with her the trains are VERY startling. However, they bought the house knowing this...

This comment from the WSDOT (Washington State Department of Transportation) in a local article… (http://blog.thenewstribune.com/street/2013/03/28/suit-seeks-to-stop-rerouting-of-amtrak-trains-through-lakewood/#comment-75690)

“They include that the Point Defiance Bypass would not alter neighborhoods, lower property values or cause significant traffic delays”

Are they serious? Trains are really loud! Property values are ALWAYS affected by a train route and that directly affects neighborhoods. Do the people that did this survey want this thing running as close to their property as it will mine? Would they even buy such a property? If I had known it was coming I certainly wouldn't have.

This is going to kill my property value that’s already much lower due to the housing market crash that we're now recovering from. I would venture a guess that this train will decrease my property value by over $100K as soon as this track is built. That’s a huge loss and one that I will not be able to recover from easily.

Who’s reimbursing or guaranteeing that I will not take a property value hit? The WSDOT that did the survey, are they going to guarantee/reimburse me when it comes time to sell? I think not!

Is a sound barrier going to be constructed to cut down on the noise? I doubt its in the plan or the budget.

Who’s going to pay for sound proofing my house? HA!

I’m a lite sleeper, who is going to pay for my sleep deprivation and loss of general health from trains going by all hours of the morning, day, and night?

Who's going to be responsible for the property and houses that are abandoned and foreclosed on?

What’s being done for emergency vehicles to get into and out of isolated areas like mine, the alternate routes to my place are small and winding… Emergency vehicles have to pass over the tracks 2 times from my house to take us to the nearest hospital for the most direct route. This seems to be a high safety risk for me, my family, and my neighbors.

Since this is going to cause an interruption in normal traffic flow on surface streets near the freeway, as the trains do now, how does this affect the I-5 freeway and freeway on/off ramps when these trains go by? It will be significant, considering that these areas are already highly congested during high traffic times.

I saw an estimate of 45 seconds in traffic delays per intersection... Just looking at a couple youtube videos of train crossings with high speed trains traffic is stopped for a full minute. And considering that these reset the traffic signals that are very close (<200ft) to the crossings this will exacerbate the stops for some traffic to what I would guess to be about 3-5 minutes. During high traffic times this will be horrible!

Since this train is going from rural along the sound to urban through cities and since these are street level crossings, you are increasing the potential for collisions. What is an acceptable number of collisions for these areas of high traffic? According to http://oli.org/about-us/news/collisions-casualties there were 2059 collisions in 2011. That is nearly 6 collisions per day in the US. That's a collision every 4 hours. What is the statistic that was determined during this discovery for the number and frequency of collisions that will occur along this new corridor based on existing data?

There are lots of questions, and plenty I have not thought of. Were they all addressed in the survey?

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