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Railroad Quiet Zones

Monday, January 22, 2018 8:58 AM

In response to concerns expressed by community members regarding the impacts of train horn noise, city staff is working with agency partners to pursue the implementation of “quiet zones” for railroad crossings impacting Boulder.

Quiet zones are at-grade railroad crossings that include physical infrastructure and warning systems so that train engineers are not required to sound the train horn at the crossing. The city has been awarded approximately $1 million in grant funding from the Denver Regional Council of Governments to advance quiet zones for the Boulder community.

Project Prioritization

The city conducted a public engagement process with the community to inform a prioritization and phasing plan for implementation. The community provided input on a number of factors to consider when prioritizing the quiet zone crossing improvements, including the number of people living and working within 0.5 miles of the railroad crossings, type and proximity of adjacent land uses (existing and /or planned), as well as street characteristics, safety, and costs for installation, plus any potential on-going maintenance responsibilities.

These were conducted by the City of Boulder in partnership with Boulder County and the Federal Railroad Administration. To view the previous two open house presentation materials and boards please see the links below. 

Feb. 23, 2017 Open House

Dec. 15, 2016 Open House

Upcoming Projects and Next Steps

The city has been awarded $1.2 million in grant funding from the Denver Regional Council of Governments (DRCOG) to design and implement improvements to create quiet zones at up to five city crossing locations. Preliminary design is beginning for the Pearl Parkway, Valmont Road and 47 th Street, 55 th Street and 63 rd Street (north of Arapahoe Ave) locations in the city of Boulder. It is anticipated that the grant funding will cover the costs for the construction of improvements at Pearl Parkway, Valmont Road and 47 th  Street but the other locations will be implemented as the budget allows.

The city will continue to pursue other funding opportunities for any remaining locations in conjunction with Boulder County and adjacent municipalities. For more information about quiet zone projects in Boulder County please contact Andrew Barth at the Boulder County Department of Transportation at 303-441-1032 or [email protected] .



Preliminary design of all locations

2018 - 2019

Construction of selected quiet zone crossing improvements.

How to stay updated 

This webpage will be updated as the projects progress. Please attend the April 30 What's Up Boulder: Citywide Open House to learn more about this project and other city projects and programs.

Have a comment?

We want to hear from you! If you have any comments or questions about the railroad quiet zones project, please submit your comments below. Feedback will be shared with the project team.

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