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Crow Canyon soundwall work set to start

Original post made on Apr 29, 2014

Construction is set to begin this week on the Crow Canyon soundwall project, an effort aimed at mitigating traffic noise heard by residents in the Crow Canyon Country Club neighborhood, a Danville town spokesman announced Tuesday.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Tuesday, April 29, 2014, 12:16 PM

Comments (26)

Posted by Derek
a resident of Danville
on Apr 29, 2014 at 6:09 pm

I'm getting really sick of all this hideous view-blocking gulag-wall construction. It's bad enough on 680 that El-Warty / KB had to get not one but two sound walls - for a housing project that should never have been built in the first place. Now we have to start erecting prison walls for the poor country clubbers too? Did they not notice there was a busy street when they bought their home? Why the #@&$ should tax money have to pay for a sound wall for these over-privileged wankers? If they want a sound wall let them pay for it. It's not bad enough they have to have their Gillooly's guarding the iron-gated entrance, in case any undesirables might wish to violate their "private parts".
Why don't the lot of you disgusting, whining, pathetic losers move somewhere quiet enough to suit your needs. Like Mars.

Posted by Joe
a resident of Danville
on Apr 30, 2014 at 7:34 am

I gotta say, Derek makes a good point. The houses have been there a long time, the road has been there a long time, so why build a wall now? What an ugly waste of money and resources. If you don't like traffic noise, don't buy a house next to a busy street- period!

Posted by Douglas
a resident of Blackhawk
on Apr 30, 2014 at 7:48 am

Although I might have written it a bit differently, I do agree with Derek. When you purchase a home it is your responsibility to know your surroundings. There are a lot better uses for that money.

Posted by Just JJ
a resident of Danville
on Apr 30, 2014 at 7:50 am

Crow Canyon Road used to be a dead end at St. George Road. There wasn't even a stop light at the intersection of Crow Canyon and El Capitan Road. No stop light because the ROAD WAS A DEAD END. They built Crow Canyon Country Club and people purchased their homes there when the ROAD WAS A DEAD END. There weren't thousands of homes and thousands of cars driving past the area when they built Crow Canyon Country Club in 1978. Just cow pastures.

Posted by Derek
a resident of Danville
on Apr 30, 2014 at 1:23 pm

I'm a bit "rithmatik-challenged", but let me take off my shoes and try to count here.....
So we're talking 36 years ago, eh? How many original CC golf enthusiasts from 1978 still live there - six?
Seriously, the advent of double-paned windows went a long way toward blocking exterior sounds, and I cannot imagine too many people in this wealthy area not having those even on the oldest of homes. And a sound wall will not block out the occasional teen driving by with his boom-boom subwoofers blasting.
So I ask again, what will this accomplish that is beneficial?

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Apr 30, 2014 at 1:28 pm

There are a bunch of trees along the road there. They better not rip those out.

Posted by Geoff Gillette
a resident of Danville
on Apr 30, 2014 at 2:20 pm

Geoff Gillette is a registered user.

Good afternoon,

I appreciate all the commentary so far and just wanted to add one thing to it. There have been some questions regarding use of financial resources for the project as well as where the project came from, and I would like to clear that up.

The funds being used for the sound wall project come from Dougherty Valley development impact fees that have been collected since the 90’s. However, the project was kept on hold until the fees collected would be sufficient to pay the cost of the noise reduction effort.

And just to be clear, the fees collected had to be used for this mitigation work, as part of a settlement agreement.

Hopefully this clears up any confusion.



Geoff Gillette
Town of Danville
Public Information Coordinator
(925) 314-3336

Posted by Vlad
a resident of Danville
on Apr 30, 2014 at 4:46 pm

Derek doesn't like anyone having more money than him. He also has no grasp of the facts, just hates anyone who is succesful and has money. Pathetic!

Posted by frankly
a resident of San Ramon
on Apr 30, 2014 at 7:10 pm

Mitigation can be achieved in many ways other then USING MORE CONCRETE MATERIALS.

Have you notice while traveling I-680 that the noise in adjoining areas on residential side still have noise?????

Yep that is freeway noise which one hears!!!

How much did that cost??? These walls are like in years past, many many public works projects, known as-PUBLIC WORKS ACT-make work schemes to keep people employed, when there are other options.

Dense vines which would grace the road ways with more green and flowering dense vines then dull blocks of concrete. They would attach themselves to wires strung between poles to hold the vines.

Just as good sound barriers as what is there now which doesn't really totally stop all the freeways/roadways noises/.

Cheaper, more graceful, more pleasant looking then more concrete.

Watta ya say?

Posted by Ms. bunny
a resident of San Ramon
on May 1, 2014 at 8:06 am

Well I'll agree on one point: KB Homes (nee KAUFMAN AND BROAD guess all the lawsuits against them historically compelled them to alter the name finally)shouldn't have been allowed to build there in the first place. Then again? The Faria project is going to make an even greater traffic, noise congestion mess once it's finally approved...And it's well on its way.

Better sit back and relax Derek...The new San Ramon won't be a tad bit like the old, nor? Will there be such a thing as quality of life. It is soon to vanish.

Posted by jrm
a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on May 1, 2014 at 9:34 am

You are so right Bunny..I think San Ramon and Dublin have the same "build Baby build" mentality and I wish the editors would NOT link Danville and San Ramon together in this website. We are two very different communities.

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on May 1, 2014 at 12:00 pm

Geoff Gillette avoid addressing whether the trees along Crow Canyon are going to be ripped out to make way for this sound wall.

So are they?

Posted by Derek
a resident of Danville
on May 1, 2014 at 1:32 pm

Let me clear a couple of things up there for you Vlad the Impaler. By about this time next year, give or take a couple months, wifey and I will have our home paid off. We've been here 8-1/2 years. Not bragging, just saying we are very lucky that money struggles are no longer a part of our lives. We don't make the money that SPCWT does but we aren't poor by any means.

Money envy, BMW/Mercedes envy, trophy wife envy, 6,000 square foot ego-mansion envy.... those aren't things I engage in. I don't really care who has what. I'm at a point in my life that I no longer want more toys. I sure as heck do not want to live in an HOA neighborhood of any type, nor do I want a larger home than we already have.

Occasionally I may "desire" a new shirt, or pair of pants or a $16 cd, that is about it. I know people can pretend to be astronauts or fabulously rich or any illusion they care to put forth on these boards, and I sincerely don't give two flying $#!+'s if you believe me or not Vlad, I don't care if the guy next door has a bigger bank account.

I just am getting disgusted by all the ugly construction that is wrecking San Ramon and Danville. The reason Danville was (past tense) nicer than most south bay communities is almost solely due to the proximity of the pretty hills. The scenery here brought affluent home buyers, which in turn brought more money into local schools among other benefits. But when we constantly block the views of the surrounding land, what exactly is the difference between driving along 680 (or Crow Canyon) and navigating past the Capitol Records building on the Hollywood freeway?

Sound walls are paid with tax money the vast majority of the time, and even if this wall is an exception we all know developers never come close to fully funding school construction, are rarely infrastructure much beyond the immediate-area sewer & utilities. So excuse me if I thought this was another tax-funded "beautification" project. The next gulag wall probably will be.

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on May 1, 2014 at 2:27 pm

People still buy CD’s? Where? Tower Records?

Did we accidentally get teleported back to 1995?

Posted by Ms. bunny
a resident of San Ramon
on May 2, 2014 at 7:59 am

One of the biggest problems we face today, in all cities really, is that just so many constraints can be placed on new development - but landowners still have rights and cities have to concede it's their land to build on. Yes, even though housing developments go through the city planning process? Nine out of ten times, the cities "hands are tied" by what they can and cannot do. We should all be concerned about WHO has WHAT buildable land LEFT in both Danville and San Ramon, and what, if any, their current/future plan is for that property if known. As I said, FARIA is going to be monstrous to BOTH San Ramon AND affect the traffic pattern, roadways, natural resources (W A T E R!) for all of us. EBMUD is only 83% full currently with water reserves, even though they are looking to "buy" some river water currently. Again, these developers don't seem to care - you would think they would SCALE DOWN THIS 750+ housing project between San Ramon/Danville in light of ALL changes in recent years in regard to development, but that hardly appears the case.

These lovely cities are soon to become less than lovely to live in I fear. It's just TOO MUCH for the area to sustain in regard to quality of living that includes traffic patterns, water, emergency services primarily.

Is anyone else concerned about this here?

Posted by Gipper
a resident of Danville
on May 2, 2014 at 10:10 am

In Parts of Europe (e.g. The Netherlands), they use a road surface that is more porous and sound absorbing than our road surfaces. One can literally stand on a frontage road next to the freeway and hold a normal conversation. In addition, the porous surface tends to channel rainwater away better. I have never understood why such surfaces aren't used in our area. It is a lot better than sound walls. Remember when I-680 had the California Poppy signs as. "Scenic route". Those days are long gone!

Posted by Geoff Gillette
a resident of Danville
on May 2, 2014 at 1:32 pm

Geoff Gillette is a registered user.

@SPCWT – Thanks for the question about trees. When the contractor was prepping the site last year, some trees were trimmed and others were removed for the project. This was done during the non-nesting season so as to not impact raptors and other birds. No additional tree removal will be occurring during construction, although the contractor can do some further trimming if necessary.

The project area will be re-landscaped at the completion of the project, which will include replacing the trees that were taken down.

Hope that answers your question.


Geoff Gillette
Town of Danville
Public Information Coordinator
(925) 314-3336

Posted by Phil R
a resident of San Ramon
on May 2, 2014 at 5:55 pm

@Gipper-Interesting comment about the Netherlands road surface. Also, anyone else noticed the difference in road noise (at least in the car) when you drive on the I-680 asphalt surface north of Diablo Road versus the concrete surface south of that point? Why can't we have some of that quiet asphalt surface on I-680 through San Ramon?

Posted by Derek
a resident of Danville
on May 3, 2014 at 1:09 pm


Yes, I know I am a fossil (or so my wife says), but I do like to support musicians. They face a horrible uphill battle these days. No, not Miley Cyrus or that human rectal thermometer Bieber, but real musicians who haven't hit it big. So I'll continue buying cd's, and playing them at home, and in my car rather than texting on a tweety-phone. Besides, my 8-track quit working.....

Posted by Elsie
a resident of Danville
on May 5, 2014 at 2:21 pm

Has anyone considered the fact that sound walls merely elevate the sound? Therefore, if you have a view you also have a roar of noise. I overhears two people talking about home buying in Danville. One said that she liked a couple of homes for sale, but they had freeway noise, to which the other responded, "What home in Danville doesn't?" To that you can now add just about every community along 680. Someone is getting rich off of altering sound in our valley and not to the majority's benefit. Anyone living above the new sound wall on Crow Canyon may find that they have more noise than they had pre-sound wall.

Posted by Derek
a resident of Danville
on May 5, 2014 at 3:42 pm

Masonry is highly reflective of sound, and while ivy or other vines can mitigate some of the reflection above 500 to 800hz, it won't do anything for lower frequencies. Sound walls help those immediately behind them, but hardly anyone else. They are a crock, they are ugly, and they cost a fortune no matter who is flipping the bill.
Gipper's comment about absorbtive road surfaces is interesting, and at least that would not denigrate the beauty of surrounding lands.
We're seeing more and more barriers around Danville and San Ramon, and the only ones who really benefit are those who supply the labor and the materials.

Posted by jp
a resident of Danville
on May 7, 2014 at 9:23 am

Whiners. Change happens. Deal with it...or move somewhere else.

Posted by Ms. bunny
a resident of San Ramon
on May 8, 2014 at 7:57 am

Golly gee jp, what an eloquent statement! Seriously, how totally democratic of YOU to "pass the buck" on public opinion and discourse here. What a small little world you must live in! (snicker) You don't have to agree with anything said but your simplistic statement lends one to believe you have the intelligence of a piece of fruit.

Posted by jp
a resident of Danville
on May 8, 2014 at 9:35 am

Ms bunny (I can't imagine where that name came from) don't know anything about me, my intelligence, the world I live in, etc. I am just tired of these message boards becoming nothing but a sounding board for how the town(s) in which we live, are corrupt and out to get us. There is no real discussion and the insults fly. It is all reactionary dialogue and there is nothing I hate more than people who always complain. I'd like to see folks stand up with realistic solutions...and then go out and do something about it other than whine and complain. This site is not teeming with public discourse and opinion. I had a noise/speed issue at my last home, we went through the established channels and were able to get a speed hump put on the street and problem was solved. Get creative, get informed. Don't just complain about it...solves nothing. If you have done something, let's hear about it.

If we want to have a discussion...would you rather hear and see a highway in your back yard (assuming you know about the highway if you bought a house right next to....or nearby 680)....or would you just rather hear the highway? I'd have to think most would like to hide it from their view...maybe not. I know sound walls typically work well...reducing sound by 3-6 decibles...which is significant...that is 1-2 times less noise. But with walls on both sides of a road, it can reflect sound back and forth and sometimes, up and over the walls. My suggestion is that if you live close and think there is an issue, request sound survey info...or request one to be completed. Adding vines or plant growth on the walls has been very effective in some applications. There are also a lot of other factors in, peak traffic patterns, types of rubber tires used on cars these days (much different than in the past), etc. Sound wall construction is funded by various outlets, depending on the origin of the project and where it is located.

Regarding the porous highway is not just a matter of laying a new surface is incredibly expensive because you need to install new drainage under the highway, the surface materials are hard to manufacture, and require a LOT of maintenance. Given the amount of rain we get here, I don't think it is a wise use of funding. If we had a lot more rain, then other topic come into play, such as rain harvesting. Given the drought we have in CA, that might work...but its not worth the sky high money for such little rainfall. I'm not not a materials engineer, but I know that the volume of cars on 680 might not be the right application. Given the temperature extremes on a daily basis in the east bay, this may also cause issues. Slow temperature changes are okay...but when it can be 105 during the day, and low 50s a couple hours later when the sun goes down...that can cause havoc on certain materials.

I'm not in the construction business nor do I have any professional stake in this matter. Just like to read about it. Believe me, I which every road or highway could be a quiet/quaint location...but I moved to the area for a reason, as I suspect most do. I expect population growth and economy I expect busier roads and highways. If the area becomes unbearable, I'd consider finding other opportunities.

Posted by Cpc
a resident of Danville
on Sep 15, 2017 at 11:32 pm

Fast forward now to 2017 post sound wall work...and the sound has increased for many of us. We live along the iron horse trail and walk it all the time. When we got here, we knew we were a bit close to the freeway, but it sounded like a soft brook and we were even mildly pleased by the decibel level and that it sounded a bit like distant nature. Now it sounds like a cacophony and wakes us up in the early morning if the windows are open. You can identify different types of cars and even hear them hit the reflector bumps. We don't even want to open our windows anymore. When we walk the kids to school we catch ourselves commenting on how loud it is.

I took a poll on Nextdoor of our neighbors in the area and these are the results: 286 votes
66% louder
2% quieter
31% didn't notice a difference

The comments were interesting. I can forward to anyone who wants to read them. Ultimately I'm wondering a few things. I heard the west side is slightly higher, is this true? Is there anything more we can do? Like a sound study? Or additional plantings? Modifications to the design? And anymore money from the development fees or elsewhere we can use to help fix this? I've even heard of neighbors moving, citing changes in the noise levels. It's not just mildly louder and easy to accept that we are close to the freeway. It is significantly louder and we've lost a valuable selling point for our investment.

I'd love to hear back and will seek to find the right people and forums to talk to about this.

Sincere regards,

Posted by The Dude
a resident of San Ramon
on Sep 16, 2017 at 4:56 pm

Are you referring to the sound walls on the freeway or along Crow Canyon Road?

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