Yelm is growing at a rapid pace. New housing developments and Walmart will add to the traffic nightmare we now face. That we can all agree on.
One factor I have not seen addressed is how the heavy volume of traffic affects our quality of life. The noise from the traffic reduces the quality of life and adversely affects health whether or not one is “used to it” or not. Noise causes involuntary physical reactions such as dialation of pupils and raised blood pressure. For many with high blood pressure or heart problems, traffic noise and other environmental noises can be dangerous and deadly. The stress resulting from environmental noise can produce angry individuals that often result in acts of violence. Noise impacts the learning abilities of our children in schools.
We all have low tolerances for certain noises. It may be a baby crying, a dog barking, sirens, loud vehicles, lawn equipment, loud music (bass that emits strong air vibrations in particular), air conditioners, etc.
Ask yourself how much is to much and consider how it may be affecting your quality of life. Yes, some things are necessary but so is consideration and respect for our neighbors. If you run noisy power equipment that can be repaired or replaced to eliminate excessive noise then do so. That’s being a good neighbor/citizen. If you enjoy loud music consider that others may find it annoying and turn it down. If your vehicle/motorcycle is loud then get it repaired/equiped to run quietly (yes, the means to do so has been available for many years).
Yelm used to be a quiet little town, but for many residents it is fast becoming an unsafe and unhealthy environment. Growth means change. How we manage that growth determines what our quality of life will be. Will we be considerate of the right to the peaceful enjoyment of our homes and community, or will we degrade our quality of life by ignoring the elements that produce negative impacts upon our lives? Will our city officials listen to us and act in the best interests of the people or will they act in the best interests of whatever profits them and their cronies? Do we have unbiased enforcement of our laws and regulations or do we get ignored or harassed when we speak up?
It’s about quality of life! It’s about working together to build a safe peaceful environment… to respect the rights of others.