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DOT Officials In NJ Say New Noise Walls Meant To Be Aesthetically Friendly

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Noise walls on Route 3 (credit: CBS 2)

Noise walls on Route 3 (credit: CBS 2)

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LYNDHURST, N.J. (CBSNewYork) — There’s nothing odd about sound barriers along Tri-State highways, that is until you see the one on Route 3 in New Jersey.

While some local residents living alongside the highway were puzzled at why 4-foot acrylic windows were placed above the barriers, the Department of Transportation called them a new concept.

A spokesperson told CBS 2’s Christine Sloan on Monday that the windows were included to make the wall look smaller and to allow more light into the neighborhood.

“I think it’s okay because we can see the other side. We can see the trees and the houses,” Rutherford resident Hannah Zielinski said.

Before starting construction, transportation officials said they held several meetings in both towns and decided to go with the design because neighbors were worried about the aesthetics of the wall.

In a statement, the DOT spokesperson said the barrier “sufficiently decreases the noise decibel from the highway while minimizing the overall aesthetic effect.”

“It looks like the Berlin Wall,” Jean Blohn, of Lyndhurst, said. “I think it’s a lotta taxpayers money.”

Noise walls run $4 million a mile and as of Monday, DOT officials were not sure if barriers with windows cost more. Some neighbors said the walls make cars sound louder on their street.

The DOT said while the walls do not eliminate highway noise all-together, the noise level is less than it was before.

What do you think of the noise walls on Route 3?  Share your thoughts in the comments section….

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