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DENVER — Residents impacted by the I-70 expansion project learned about ways that noise is being mitigated during construction, but if it becomes too loud they might be staying in a hotel.
"No, this is my home. You’re not going to put me in no motel. I don’t care. You can take me down to the Brown Palace. I wouldn't stay there. This is my home; this is my neighborhood. I love my neighborhood," said Thomas Hora, a Swansea resident.
Hora joined his neighbors at a meeting so they could ask questions about a proposed noise variance for the project.
In July, Kiewit Infrastructure informed residents that it applied for a noise variance (basically permission to be loud) for “approximately 65 months of daytime/nighttime construction needed for the project to be completed by the end of December 2023.”
A hearing for the variance will be held on September 6 at the Denver City and County Building in the Parr Widener Conference Room. Public comments will be heard during that meeting. Written comments will be accepted through September 5. Residents wishing to submit a comment can email BEH@Denvergov.org.
The project manager for Kiewit Meridiam Partners explained different steps the company will take to reduce noise levels.
Sound barrier walls will be used to dampen the noise in certain parts. As part of the variance, there will be quieter generators and no blaring backup alarms for trucks. It also requires nights off for construction.
Major construction like bridge construction activity would have to take place on a 3-nights-on, 4-nights-off schedule. Regular construction would take place on a 5-nights-on, 2-nights-off schedule.
During exceptionally noisy construction, like bridge demolition, residents will have the option to leave their homes and stay at a hotel. Pre-paid rooms or vouchers will be offered, in addition to transportation and meals for the temporarily displaced residents.
"It is an inconvenience, but we want to make sure we’re protecting them from the noise and giving them an option. They don’t have to take the hotel voucher if they don’t want to, but it gives them an option. And you know some people do it, and some people don’t," said Hunter Sydnor, a spokesperson for Kiewit Meridiam.