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Cuomo: $200 million in BRIDGE NY funding available to build resiliency in NYS communities

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Mon, Jan 25th 2021 02:15 pm

Helps local governments replace bridges & culverts statewide, making them more resilient to extreme weather events
Initiative supports goals of nation-leading Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act
Announcement builds upon $500 million previously awarded to local governments to harden infrastructure & mitigate impacts of climate change

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced the availability of $200 million in BRIDGE NY funding for local governments to make their infrastructure more resilient to extreme weather events. The new funding will allow localities to rehabilitate and replace bridges and culverts statewide. It builds upon $500 million previously awarded to 143 local governments since 2016 for the rehabilitation and replacement of 298 bridges and culverts.

The governor’s office said, “These strategic infrastructure investments have enhanced the quality of life for residents and businesses in every region of the state and have provided unprecedented support for making New York's communities more resilient to the impacts of climate change. This initiative supports the goals of New York's nation-leading Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act.”

Cuomo said, "New York state and communities around the world are increasingly contending with extreme weather events driven by climate change, and it's vital that we fortify our community infrastructure to be resilient to those changes. This newly available BRIDGE NY funding provides communities statewide with the technical and financial support necessary to harden locally owned bridges and culverts, which will not only enhance their safety and reliability, but will facilitate regional and global economic competitiveness."

The BRIDGE NY application is available to all municipalities authorized to receive and administer state and federal transportation funding. Awards will be made through a competitive process and will support all phases of project development, including design, right-of-way acquisition and construction. Evaluations will be based on the structural condition of a bridge or culvert and its resiliency and significance based upon traffic volumes, detour considerations, the number and types of businesses served and the overall impact on commerce. Consideration will also be given to projects that provide demonstrable benefit for environmental justice communities.

Department of Transportation Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez said, "Gov. Cuomo recognizes that aggressive investments in transportation infrastructure are crucial for our state's long-term competitiveness and sustainability. The funding being made available under the BRIDGE NY initiative will serve to make our state's communities more environmentally and economically resilient."

Applications for funding will be accepted Jan. 25 through May 19 for culverts, and June 9 for bridges. Applications and additional information are available at: www.dot.ny.gov/bridgeny.

With the addition of this new funding, New York is providing more than $1 billion during the current fiscal year for regionally derived, locally administered road and bridge projects. The BRIDGE NY program, administered by the New York State Department of Transportation, is part of the state's historic $306 billion infrastructure plan.

New York State Sen. Tim Kennedy, chairman of the Transportation Committee, said, "It is imperative that New York's infrastructure prioritizes the safety of drivers and, through this funding, municipalities will have access to financial resources that will ensure this is possible. Strategic investments like these are key to creating sound transportation networks statewide, and I look forward to seeing these funds support future improvements across New York."

Assemblyman William B. Magnarelli, chairman of the Transportation Committee, said, "As we've seen over recent years, New York is vulnerable to a variety of severe weather. Investing in protecting our bridges and culverts statewide is as important as maintaining our roads and bridges. This announcement shows New York state's commitment to protecting and enhancing our statewide infrastructure."

New York State County Highway Superintendents Association President Joe Wisinski said, "On behalf of the New York State County Highway Superintendents Association and the members we serve, we thank Gov. Cuomo for advancing this critical funding for the BRIDGE NY program. Maintaining bridges and culverts across the state will generate good-paying jobs and keep millions of motorists safe. Investing in transportation infrastructure is essential to the safety of New Yorkers and the strength of our economy. We look forward to working with Gov. Cuomo and the Legislature to ensure the delivery of fair funding for local roads and bridges.”

New York State's Nation-Leading Climate Plan

Cuomo's team said his climate agenda is “the most aggressive climate and clean energy initiative in the nation, calling for an orderly and just transition to clean energy that creates jobs and continues fostering a green economy as New York state recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. Enshrined into law through the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, New York is on a path to achieving its mandated goal of a zero-emissions electricity sector by 2040, including 70% renewable energy generation by 2030, and to reach economywide carbon neutrality.”

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