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Effort to stop noise pollution from NYPD gun range going on for a generation; Spencer Estate Civic Association concurs

CICA, 45th Precinct Community Council to NYPD: bring temporary sound baffling to Rodman’s Neck

Bronx Times
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The fight to get sound abatement at Rodman’s Neck, a conflict about noise pollution going on for a generation, continues.

At least 165 signatures were collected in a matter of days at community meetings and through Change.org calling on Mayor de Blasio and the New York City Council to install sound baffles, even if they are temporary, at the police firing range next to Pelham Bay Park.

Both the 45th Precinct Community Council and the City Island Civic Association support the petition, said John Doyle, a board member of both organizations.

He said he created the Change.org petition and added that he gathered additional signatures at a Country Club Civic Association meeting on Wednesday, November 16 and at a Community Board 10 meeting the following evening.

“This is a regional issue,” said Doyle, who explained that he has collected signatures from Country Club, Co-op City and Pelham Bay. “I’m hopeful that the more signatures that we get…the more they will know that this is a priority.”

With the mayor pledging some relief at a Throggs Neck town hall meeting in August and up for re-election in 2017, Doyle said that he believes that it is the right time to press the issue.

A pledge to study sound abatement was made to the state legislature by Mayor Dinkins in writing in 1993, according to documents.

Organization members started the petition after a meeting with NYPD officials about the range’s future in early November, sources at the CICA said.

Community leaders were recently told by NYPD officials that there would not be sound abatement for at least five years, and the funding was not necessarily guaranteed to be part of the city’s capital budget or to remain in it, said Barbara Dolensek, CICA vice-president.

“They are not dealing with the situation, which has really become insufferable lately,” she said, adding the CICA would like to apply pressure to NYPD to get sound attenuation sooner.

She said that there were many levels of anger about the noise, she said, adding that she believes temporary improvements can be made.

“At the moment, I am looking into temporary baffling as an inexpensive, quick way to eliminate much of the noise, “ said Dolensek. “I am also looking into getting the state and federal government to chip in with (funding).”

While City Island is closer to the range, Spencer Estate does get some noise from the facility under certain atmospheric conditions, said Al Carena, president of the Spencer Estate Civic Association.

“I think sound barriers would be the most reasonable thing that would be done,” said Carena. “To me that would be something that would alleviate some of the issues.”

Carena said that the NYPD had minimized the hours in which pistol practice takes place, and that he believes having the range at Rodman’s Neck, putting aside the sound issues, is a good thing.

However, the effort to baffle the range would not quiet the periodic explosions at the range when the NYPD’s Bomb Squad sets off its controlled detonations .

To see the petition on Change.org, visit: www.change.org/p/bill-de-blasio-sound-proof-the-shooting-range-at-rodman-s-neck.

Reach Reporter Patrick Rocchio at (718) 260–4597. E-mail him at procchio@cnglocal.com. Follow him on Twitter @patrickfrocchio.
Updated 5:07 pm, July 9, 2018
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