Written by Rich Forestano Friday, 11 June 2010 00:00
It was revealed last week that the Village of Mineola has officially retained Lally Acoustical Consultants to assess the noise issues that have been plaguing 13th Avenue residents for the last seven months. Last month, the board of trustees voted and agreed to reach out to Lally for its services and expertise in sound attenuation and abatement. Discussions between the village and Lally have been ongoing and became official on June 2.
It has been reported that the cost to retain Lally will be somewhere in the amount of $10,000. Lally Acoustical provides acoustical consulting services ranging from field-testing to acoustic and vibration review of architectural, structural, and mechanical designs. Lally specializes in environmental noise as well.
Mayor Jack M. Martins iterated that Verizon and the Village of Garden City are currently in the process of retaining their own consultants as well. Originally, Garden City asked that Mineola provide and retain a consultant, which in turn, would work with Garden City.
However, Martins felt that it was in the best interest of the village that it retain an exclusive consultant so that it would serve as a separate entity from the other two parts, and would independently review the design to negate further disruption for Mineola residents. The Mayor said it would be more effective for all parties to have as many experts involved as possible to come up with a solid solution to this ongoing problem.
“It’s best to have our own evaluation and have our own recommendations aside from those that may be in place from Verizon and Garden City as it’s pretty clear those who will be most impacted by any of these issues and changes are our own residents,” Martins stated. “So it certainly behooves us to have our own [consultant] and we do. We’re looking forward to Garden City and Verizon providing us with the contact information for their consultants so that they can begin working in tandem with us and come up with some alternatives, solutions and ideas to hopefully get this issue resolved as quickly and painlessly as possible.”
According to Martins, Verizon will be preparing a design for noise abatement, which will then be reviewed by Lally and Garden City’s consultant. In turn, if changes need to be made, they’ll be suggested and most likely, implemented with all parties agreeing.
“Hopefully we’ll have all three [parties] on the same page; that there are recommendations that can be made to any of the recommended design,” Martins said. “Ultimately if you have that many people addressing an ongoing issue, you expect the problem will get fixed. And that’s what we’re looking at.”
There are no Garden City residents who are being affected by the noise that goes on at the Verizon plant at odd hours, according to previous resident testimonies. Martins said that’s the main reason the village wanted its own consultant.
“We’re the ones who have the residents exposed to this,” he said. “I felt that was very important to have someone directly involved with us as we go through the process of addressing the issue. I felt that it was important to have somebody reporting back to us and not getting our information second, third or fourth hand.”
In terms of a timetable when all this will be completed, Martins said that Verizon and Garden City want it resolved as soon as possible and that more so than anything, “the ball is in Verizon’s court to come up with a design. Once [the consultants] sign off on it, Verizon can find a contractor to come out and put that together. If the design is something that our consultant does not feel works, it will give us the opportunity to try to intercede. The last thing we want is for them to go through the time and effort to come up with a proposed fix, to only have the issue remain.”
With each party having its own representative, it’s more likely that the design that is finalized will not need alterations. “I do feel comfortable that we’re in good hands with [Lally] and that there shouldn’t be any problems,” Martins concluded.