Naperville seeking solution to Mariano's delivery noise
Two Naperville residents who live behind the new Mariano's now aren't the only ones complaining that noise from deliveries to the popular grocery store is unacceptable.
City council members are joining the chorus as well.
Several council members voiced concerns this week that Mariano's is making more noise than it said it would when gaining approval to build a new store in place of a former Dominick's at Naper Boulevard and 75th Street.
The store opened May 10 at 1300 S. Naper Blvd. and Mariano's officials said it received such high demand that it needed to store some food in a refrigerated trailer behind the building.
Neighbors said the trailer is noisy and sometimes operates during quiet hours set by city ordinance of 7 p.m. to 7 a.m., with the store receiving at least three citations for ordinance violations.
James Hyland, a spokesman for Mariano's parent company, Roundy's Supermarkets, Inc., said Wednesday "trailer noise is no longer an issue as our drivers have been instructed to turn off the trailer upon arrival at the store."
But after what council member Kevin Gallaher called "a whole summer of complaints," he and others on the panel are saying it's time the city gets serious about making Mariano's improve sound conditions behind the store.
"I'm thrilled that Mariano's is in our community. But based on their conduct in this situation, it's really frustrating," Gallaher said. "We need to go to Mariano's and say, 'Fix the problem once and for all let's be done with it.'"
That's what the city plans to do, said Bill Novack, director of transportation, engineering and development. He said his department will gather Mariano's representatives, property owner Bradford Real Estate Companies, city leaders and possibly Hunter Circle residents whose yards abut the store to come to a solution.
"I think it's got to be brought to a head and soon," council member Kevin Coyne said. "We need to fix this."
Before two residents brought their headaches to the council for at least the third time Tuesday, council member John Krummen had been working on a possible solution: trees. Krummen said Mariano's and neighbors reached an agreement in theory that the store and property owner would plant a row of about 30 trees, each between 8 and 10 feet tall, at the eastern edge of the property to decrease sound.
Hyland said an agreement on the planting of trees has not been reached, but the store is considering the idea.
Krummen said arborists told the group it would be best to wait until spring to plant the trees, but some doubted the wisdom of that plan.
"I'm very concerned that the trees in this case aren't going to solve the problem," Gallaher said. "The trees aren't going to deaden the noise."
That's why the next step will be another meeting to determine the best course. Neighbors are asking the store to build a tall wall to shield the loading dock from their yards. The store promised and delivered a "reconfigured" loading area with a wing wall to screen activities from residents, but the partial wall doesn't cover the full height of a truck.
"We can talk more seriously about stricter measures," Novack said.