The City of Round Rock recently brought a new traffic signal online that completes the requirements needed to implement the City’s final quiet zone, pending Union Pacific approval.
Quiet zones restrict trains from blowing their horns inside the City limits, although train engineers can still blow their horn if they believe it is necessary or in case of emergency. The process to implement quiet zones in Round Rock has required several years of coordination with Union Pacific Railroad and the Federal Railroad Administration, as well as construction projects to bring the route into compliance with federal regulations and quiet zone mandates.
The first phase of the quiet zone from County Road 172 to Burnet Road came into effect in summer 2021; this second phase will run from Burnet Road to Red Bud Lane.
The traffic signal at the intersection of Highway 79 and Brushy Creek Plant Road was in the process of being installed and was awaiting power when the February 2023 ice storm hit. The signal was temporarily placed in flashing mode while working with Union Pacific to initiate proper signal operation due to its location next to the railroad tracks.
Other improvements included the installation of quad gates and new electronics at the railroad crossing, along with preemption implemented at all railroad crossings.
The City of Round Rock is now awaiting final approval by Union Pacific, a process that could take up to several more months.
For more information on this project and others, visit roundrocktexas.gov/transportation.