Sunday, August 30, 2009

Living On Aspinwall Road

Every now and then I run across an article in the Boston Globe or the Providence Journal about people who live near an airport who are unhappy about the noise created by the jets flying overhead. Almost inevitably I find myself thinking "Who was there first, you are the airport?" While I can understand that the sound of jets landing and taking off could get a little old, I have to admit to having little sympathy for these folks as they knew what they were getting into when they moved near the damn airport....

On the other hand...I have a great deal of sympathy for those folks who moved into a well established neighborhood and over the years their neighborhood changes on them. The infamous Route 18 is a major north/south route running through Plymouth and Bristol Counties in Massachusetts. Every day I drive on a heavily traveled portion of this secondary road that has undergone a transformation over the past twenty years, moving from a primarily residential area to one dominated by commercial influences.

From time to time, as I sit in traffic in front of the few remaining homes on my section of Route 18, I find myself wondering about the people living inside. Were they happy living alongside a steady stream of traffic. Could they smell the exhaust from passing cars in their living rooms? Did they want to move?

I did not move next to an airport, but my neighborhood changed sometime ago. I do not know when Aspinwall Road became a one way street but it certainly is one now. Traffic goes down it but it never comes back the other way. Maybe it does not matter when it became a one way street. Whats important is that for some time I have not liked the flow of traffic. Its time to move.


  1. I love the sounds of airplanes BUT totally would never live near an airport... just stupid I think. Had a friend once who's house was the last one standing near a major highway built... it ran thru her back yard... I would have moved!

  2. Hey Tom --

    This brought back memories of growing up near the end of TF Green's runway in Warwick. The airport was there when we moved and honestly I don't recall the planes being a terrible nuisance. That is, until my parents would plead for there to be no take-offs when it was time to sell the house and we had visits from potential buyers (though I was only 8 when we moved from there -- so my parents may have a different perspective).

    Of course we did sell that house and moved to North Kingstown where, being very close to Quonset Point, once a year we'd be under the direct flight path of the Blue Angels or Thunderbirds during the annual airshow. Of course that was a good time to be near the end of a runway.