Crossing decision should have little impact

With some reluctancy, Tiffin City Council members voted Monday night to closed two railroad crossings in the city.

While the closures likely would inconvenience some residents, the move makes sense.

Financially, the decision could mean the difference of more than $1 million, if city leaders proceed with seeing a quiet zone established that would allow train conductors to not sound horns while rolling through Tiffin.

Officials claim closing the two crossings could bring the city another $400,00-$450,000 for the quiet-zone project, which would require installing special gates at remaining rail crossings in Tiffin. Plus, the four-quadrant gates would cost $750,000-$800,000 to install at the two crossings.

The crossings eyed for closure include one on Holmes Street east of National Machinery. Unless you are familiar with Crayon Street, you might never have used it. People living in the area of Greeley Street would have a longer trip to the YMCA or Hedges-Boyer Park.

The other crossing is on North Monroe Street, which might have been a busier thoroughfare had the bridge across the Sandusky River been replaced after the 1913 flood. As it is, the North Washington Street viaduct takes traffic under the railroad just a block to the east, and the Kennedy Memorial Bridge spans the rails two blocks to the west on North Sandusky Street.

The real test whether this is all worthwhile would come after the quiet zone is finished and residents can determine its effectiveness.