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Fed Up With Noise, Katonah Stakeholders Want State To Renovate I-684

Thom Hagen, president of the Katonah Village Improvement Society (KVIS), makes a plea for state officials to renovate the local stretch of Interstate 684. He blames deterioration of the road for high noise levels. Video Credit: Thom Hagen/YouTube

KATONAH, N.Y. -- The loud thundering of traffic on the Katonah stretch of Interstate 684 has prompted frustrated residents to seek a renovation.

The push began in August with an online campaign from hamlet civic group Katonah Village Improvement Society (KVIS), and was renewed on Friday with Facebook posts by the Katonah Chamber of Commerce.

In a YouTube video posted in August, KVIS President Thom Hagen made a point about I-684's condition when he tried to speak at the local overpass. The roaring traffic drowned out Hagen's voice, as it was barely audible. However, the video includes captions to assist viewers.

Hagen, in the video, urged residents to contact Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office and that of the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) which is responsible for the expressway's upkeep, which he charged has not been done in a long time.

“New York has neglected this 1½ miles of 684 for nearly 50 years, resulting in a deteriorated roadbed both unsafe for drivers and unbearably loud for residents and visitors," Hagen stated.

Hagen said that the Katonah stretch, which is from Harris Road to the Route 35 overpass, is just 1,000 feet from a national historic district, houses of worship and residences.

Nearby stretches of I-684 were repaved earlier this year as part of an ongoing project.

Hagen, citing figures from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, explained that the highest noise level for annoying sounds is 55 decibels, while the maximum to avoid hearing loss is 70. He noted that some neighbors, by contrast, reported levels above 85 decibels.

Video of Hagen's plea is attached to this article.

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