HLE is working on the Laurel Street grade separation in order to separate vehicles and pedestrians from rail traffic. Nearly 90 trains pass over Laurel Street on a daily basis, resulting in a total “gate down” time of over 4 hours. In addition, the grade separation will greatly reduce noise impacts to nearby properties by eliminating the need for trains to blow their horns as they cross over Laurel Street.
Laurel Street will be depressed under 6 railroad tracks, 8th Street will be re-designed to end in a cul-de-sac because of the elevation change, and local street improvements will be made to maintain access to businesses, construction of retaining walls, utility relocations, drainage improvements and landscaping.
Construction began in early 2013 and is expected to last 18 months. Keep watching for more updates and go to the grade separation website for more information.