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Notes On Living Next To An ATL Construction Site

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It seems like the worst of the housing crisis has vaporized from all but the hardest hit of Atlanta's neighborhoods. Not only that — the city's abuzz with construction projects, from the demolition and replacement of single-family homes to the ever-expanding inventory of glass towers. Though it's exciting, it can also make for one heck of headache, especially if you happen to live next to one of these real estate rebounds. If there's a building permit coming to a lot near you, there's a few things to watch out for in the coming months ... don't say we didn't warn you.

For some crazy reason, the process of building tends to produce noise. Make that a lot of noise. Vehicles that always seem to be backing up, materials that are in the proces of being joined, and yelling dudes tend to make for an obnoxious cacophony pretty much all day. (Not to mention the ubiquitous mariachi music, but that's kind of cool). The decible level isn't too bad for a house, but anything over a couple of stories is gonna be a constant racket. Lucky for you, construction crews have to sleep like the rest of us, but they also tend to get to work pretty early. If you're not a morning person, invest in the white noise of an air purifier, or download one of those fancy sleep machine apps.

Construction sites aren't the cleanest of places. If the weather's dry, you're going to get dust flying around. On the flip side, rain can make for a veritable red mud pit. If the latter is affecting you, it's probably a good idea to contact the appropriate municipal authority; runoff issues are something that can be regulated. When it comes to construction dust, your best bet is to keep the windows shut. Come to think of it, air purifiers actually serve multiple purposes in this situation.

Another big issue with building in Atlanta is the closure of streets. In a city where cars are paramount, this can wreak havoc. Sometimes it's for the duration of the project, other times it can be just for the installation of some component or the disassembly of a crane. Accommodations are usually made for residents of adjacent properties, but it's the potential for pop-up traffic that creates the real headache.

The constant cycle of on-and-off construction in Atlanta over the past, oh, 150 years has ensured that you can never be quite sure what's going to be around upon return from time away. That's part of the fun of living here. And we hope for your sake that's a good thing; an empty lot replaced with buzzing life, or a beautiful new abode in place of an abandoned shack. However, don't be surprised if things don't turn out so rosy. Light can be blocked, traffic can increase, and you might just find yourself a newly born NIMBY.

— By Curbed Atlanta contributor Jonathan Carnright