Area residents can education themselves about the potential impact installing a sound wall would have on Route 347 and its surrounding communities.
New York State Department of Transportation has uploaded its Community Sound Wall Presentation online to the Route 347 project page where residents can watch the presentation offered Sept. 6 from their own homes.
Roughly 90 homeowners living in close to the stretch of Route 347 between Route 111/Wheeler Road and Mount Pleasant Road can vote on whether they want the DOT to install a sound wall along the edge of the highway as its expanded from its current four lanes to six lanes, three in each direction.
Eileen Peters, a spokeswoman for DOT, said the presentation is identical to the one given at a community meeting held Sept. 6 at the Perry B. Duryea building. It offers residents conceptual drawings of what the Route 347 expansion will look like if nothing is done, with plantings, and if the sound barriers are constructed.
The online presentation is a Windows Media Video file, so Mac computer users will have to download an accessory program to view it.
While any Hauppauge or Smithtown resident can watch the presentation, only those 90 homeowners determined to be affected by the DOT can cast their vote by mail-in ballot up until Sept. 26, according to Peters.
In the summer 2010, Brooksite Drive residents voted against having the sound wall installed when a roughly one-mile stretch of Route 347 was widened from the Route 454/Veterans Highway intersection to Route 111/Wheeler Road.
If residents approve installing a sound wall, Peters said residents and DOT engineers will work together on creating the final look and design of the sound barrier that works for the community.
Both the sound wall and expansion of Route 347 are part of the Route 347 greenway project, which started construction in Aug. 2010. The goal is to expand Route 347 to three lanes traveling in each direction, with a shared-use pedestrian and bike lane along the south side to encourage eco-friendly modes of transportation.