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Noise complaints alter Towson water main work schedule

The county has agreed to change the work schedule to build a major water transmission in downtown Towson after residents of the Palisades apartment building nearby complained of noise from the nighttime work.
The county has agreed to change the work schedule to build a major water transmission in downtown Towson after residents of the Palisades apartment building nearby complained of noise from the nighttime work. (Staff photo by Elizabeth Eck)

Based on noise complaints from the residents of the Palisades apartment building near downtown Towson, Baltimore County is changing its work schedule to build a major water transmission line from night to daytime, starting in June.

"In an effort to lessen the impact to local residents, the contractor for the 42-inch Towson Transmission Main will switch to day work along Towsontowne Boulevard between Bosley Avenue and York Road," Jeffrey Peluso, area engineer in the county's Division of Construction Contracts Administration, notified County Councilman David Marks in an email May 19.

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"This activity will start approximately the first week in June and will continue for about one month," Peluso stated. "During this period, Towsontowne Boulevard eastbound will be closed from 6 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, and weekends from 6 a.m. until 6 p.m. Motorists will be detoured accordingly. We hope that this change will alleviate some of your constituent criticisms regarding this project's activities."

Baltimore County began construction in November of a major water transmission line in Towson. The 18-month, $9.7 million, project will run through Bosley Avenue, Towsontown Boulevard and Hillen Road.

Crews are working on Towsontown Boulevard and have completed 10 percent of the project, according to the county's website.

"Some traffic congestion due to construction has been reported," the website states.

Marks said that crews have been working weekdays from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m., leading to complaints by Palisades residents.

"They were dealing with construction noise from the Towsontown Boulevard project during bedtime hours," Marks said in an email. "We intervened and were able to get daytime hours to minimize the disruption to the Palisades. It's going to get a little more difficult for motorists, but the nighttime noise was not fair to the hundreds of residents in the Palisades."

Reaction from residents to the noise was mixed Friday.

"It's ridiculous," said Paul Sorensen, chief financial officer of a health care company, who lives at the Palisades on weekdays and commutes back to his home in New Jersey on weekends. "I can't sleep at night. I slept with headphones on last night," he said as he was leaving for New Jersey. "I'm going home to get some sleep."

But resident Victoria Collis, whose seventh-floor apartment faces the construction zone, said, "It really doesn't bother me. It's still a great place to live, so it's fine."

Pamela Martin, director of the community team at Southern Management Corp., which owns and operates the Palisades of Towson, said the change in work hours is supposed to take effect June 1, and that if it does, "Our residents will be very happy about that. We do receive several complaints about noise in the evenings, which is hindering their sleeping during the nighttime hours."

Southern Management also runs Palisades apartment buildings in Bethesda and Hanover, Md.

The 18-story Palisades of Towson, opened in 2010 with 357 units, located on Washington Avenue at Towsontown Boulevard.

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