39th St. trucks a big issue in Vancouver

9-9-13-vancouver semi trucks-Gary Kahne
A big rig rolls down 39th Street in Vancouver Monday, Sept. 9, 2013. (Gary Kahne/KOIN 6 News)

VANCOUVER, Wash. (KOIN) — They’ve fought to get semi trucks off a street that goes through the heart of their neighborhood for more than a year.

9-9-13-vancouver semi trucks sign-Gary Kahne
A sign in the Lincoln Neighborhood near downtown Vancouver as of Sept. 9, 2013. (Gary Kahne/KOIN 6 News)

But people living in the Lincoln Neighborhood near downtown Vancouver say the trucks keep coming — and no one from the city is hearing their complaints.

On Monday afternoon, the big rigs rolled down 39th Street, rattling windows, braking loudly and adding congestion to this two-lane neighborhood road. The neighbors here have protested, petitioned, even purposely delayed traffic. And they’re still trying to get someone from the city to listen.

Mowing the grass is one of the few things Cora Bernal still does in her front yard. Her house sits right on 39th Street and the truck traffic — which she says is so prolific — even affects her life inside the house.

“I can’t have the windows open at night when I’m watching TV and stuff,” Bernal said, “because you can’t hear over the truck noise — you can’t hear the television.”

9-9-13-vancouver semi trucks street sign-Gary Kahne
On Monday afternoon, the big rigs rolled down 39th Street, rattling windows, braking loudly and adding congestion to this two-lane neighborhood road. (Gary Kahne/KOIN 6 News)

She said she loves the neighborhood, but now hears truck noise even at night as she tries to sleep.

“I think it’s the ‘jake brakes,’ I don’t know,” she said. “You hear the different noises all night long — big booms. It’s loud.”

Bernal and others told KOIN 6 News the problem became worse when the state built a bridge over the rail-yard at the west end of the road. The bridge gives truckers a more direct route to Vancouver’s Fruit Valley industrial area from Interstate 5.

Greg Martin said the city of Vancouver at the time assured neighbors the bridge would not materially increase truck traffic.

“It was basically, ‘Don’t worry about that,” Martin said.

Martin is adamant that the city’s promises didn’t hold true.

A city of Vancouver Public Works official told KOIN 6 News that 39th Street has handled commercial and vehicle traffic long before the bridge went in — and there are currently no plans to prohibit trucks on 39th. The official also said the city encourages trucks to use Mill Plain into the Port area, but doesn’t require it.

[lin_video src=http://eplayer.clipsyndicate.com/embed/player.js?aspect_ratio=16×9&auto_next=1&auto_start=0&div_id=videoplayer-1378796369&height=354&page_count=5&pf_id=9621&show_title=1&va_id=4307794&width=650&windows=2 service=syndicaster width=650 height=354 div_id=videoplayer-1378796369 type=script]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s