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Governor Kathy Hochul signed a bill today that would force the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to release reports each year detailing its efforts to reduce noise across their system — which comes after the Condo Island complex made some noise about the impact of the nearby subway on their quality of life.
“Public transportation should improve the quality of life for New Yorkers, not disturb them,” Hochul said. “This legislation will ensure that NYC Transit prioritizes the concerns of the communities as the Subway comes back to life and New York continues to come back.”
Coney Island Assemblyman Matilde Frontos introduced the “Stop the Noise” bill in March to help voters in Brightwater Towers Condominiums, who were alarmed by the noise from the raised F- and Q lines because they are next to the W. Eighth Street subway station. Residents formed a “Stop the Noise Initiative Group” with a mission to permanently reduce train noise for all affected New Yorkers.
“Thank you to the residents of Brightwater Towers who made so much noise themselves and brought this to my attention, to my colleagues in Albany for recognizing the need for more oversight of this issue, and to Governor Hochhol for signing it, Frontos, who also represents Bay Ridge and Bath Beach, in a statement.” This will help bring some peace to our city and help neighbors and trains coexist peacefully.”
While residents of Surf Avenue apartments also live with the noise of the Q train, they told Brooklyn Paper that the F train is noisier due to the 90-degree spin it makes next to their homes—resulting in high-pitched screeching that forces them to live with their windows closed, even during hot periods.
“You can hear the brake noise with the metal,” said Angela Kravchenko, a resident of the towers. “Imagine two trains back and forth, all the windows closed during the summer.”
Noise reduction reports will now require the New York City Transportation Authority, the MTA company focused on managing the subway system, detailing projects or steps they took to reduce noise that year, and the plans they have for next year as the bill text .
“Of the many responsibilities that RTA has, a key cornerstone is being a good neighbour,” Senator Leroy Comrie, a co-sponsor of the bill who is represented in neighboring Queens, said in a statement. “Noise reduction reporting legislation will do two things — first, let New Yorkers and legislative leaders know what steps the authority is taking on an annual basis to mitigate impacts, and second, provide a transparent record of when and where resources are being made available or will be deployed.”
The legislation adds language to the Rapid Transit Noise Act which was passed into law in 1982, leading to a slew of noise reduction initiatives such as the screeching of wagons and railroad shocks, and would reaffirm that the Rail Authority must prioritize noise as a problem across. the system.
The Stop the Noise Initiative group applauded the passage of the legislation but vowed it would continue to fight for all New Yorkers on the issue, because it doesn’t just affect them.
“The residents of our building are very grateful for the efforts of Matilde Frontos to pass this law and this work to our residents,” said Lolita Devilova. This problem is system-wide, not just our own. So hopefully we can find solutions for our region, and we can be experimental that we can then help other parts of New York.”