Franklin Park

Suburban Chicago Village Works to Limit Loud Train Horn Noises

Federal law requires trains to sound their horns at grade crossings. There are four train crossings within a short distance near the downtown area of Franklin Park.

NBC Universal, Inc.

Residents in suburban Franklin Park said train horn blasts throughout the day and night are impacting their quality of life.

Federal law requires trains to sound their horns at grade crossings. There are four train crossings within a short distance near the downtown area of Franklin Park.

"They just lay on the horn and you have a wake-up call almost every night," said resident Kasia O’Brien.

But according to the village, a possible relief is in sight.

Franklin Park has partnered with River Grove and Metra in an attempt to obtain a "Quiet Zone" designation from the Federal Railroad Administration (FRA).

A Quiet Zone means trains would not be required to sound their horns unless the engineer feels a dangerous condition exists.

"We all know how intrusive and annoying train horn noise can be, especially when they impact your sleep," said Franklin Park Mayor Barrett Pedersen. "The Village has been working hard to obtain a Quiet Zone in Franklin Park to address this situation."

The villages and Metra are making safety improvements at grade and pedestrian crossings, which could improve their chances of receiving a Quiet Zone approval.

Franklin Park said it used $1.4 million from the Pedestrian Rail Safety Grant to fund 90% of the safety improvements.

Pedersen said if all goes as planned, approval for the Quiet Zone could happen in December, January or February.

Some residents say any changes cannot happen soon enough.

"I can’t sleep here. For the past few years, I can't sleep. I have anxiety," said resident Marzena Szubart.

Contact Us