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Hochul announces start of $9.9 million project to rehabilitate 3 bridges in Erie County


Mon, Jun 3rd 2024 05:35 pm

Project intended to enhance safety and improve mobility along key overpasses that collectively serve over 25,000 vehicles daily

Gov. Kathy Hochul announced construction has begun on a $9.9 million project to rehabilitate three key bridges in Erie County, including the structures that carry Fillmore Avenue and Grider Street over state Route 33 – also known as the Kensington Expressway – in the City of Buffalo.

The project, which also includes the bridge carrying state Route 5 over Eighteen Mile Creek in the Town of Evans, will enhance safety and improve driving conditions along vital commuter and commercial arteries for travel to and from the City of Buffalo; and extend the service life of these three structures by at least 20 years. The three bridges collectively serve more than 25,000 vehicles each day.

“New York state remains laser-focused on rebuilding our infrastructure and ensuring that our transportation network continues to function – bringing communities together and boosting our economy,” Hochul said. “This project will extend the lifespan of three critically important bridges and ease travel for the thousands of motorists who travel along these vital corridors each day to reach the City of Buffalo and its suburbs.”

As part of the project, the Fillmore Avenue and Grider Street bridges over the Kensington Expressway, which were built in 1965 and 1968, respectively, will have their bridge decks and joints replaced. Additional work includes steel repairs, rehabilitation of bridge piers and rail upgrades.

Bridge joints will also be replaced on the state Route 5 bridge over Eighteen Mile Creek, which was constructed in 1931.

Work has begun first on the Grider Street bridge, which was closed to traffic Monday morning. Motorists should follow the posted detour utilizing East Delevan Avenue, William Gaiter Parkway and Kensington Avenue. The bridge is expected to reopen to traffic in mid-November.

The rehabilitation of the state Route 5 bridge over 18 Mile Creek is expected to begin later this summer. Motorists should expect traffic to be reduced to one lane in each direction with a speed limit reduction to 40 mph. The Fillmore Avenue bridge is expected to close in the spring of 2025 with motorists advised to follow a posted detour. The project is expected to finish by the end of 2025.

All the three bridges are located outside the limits of the separate Kensington Expressway project being undertaken by the New York State Department of Transportation.

Department of Transportation Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez said, “Under Gov. Hochul’s leadership, New York state is making critically important investments in our transportation infrastructure, connecting communities, and growing our economy. The rehabilitation of these three bridges in Erie County will help us create a more resilient transportation network that better serves residents and visitors to Western New York and will further sustain the tremendous momentum of investment we are already seeing throughout the Buffalo area.”

Congressman Tim Kennedy said, “These bridges are important to ensuring the smooth and safe flow of traffic in Western New York. The bridges carrying Fillmore Avenue and Grider Street are critical to transportation access on Buffalo’s east side, including efficient access to the ECMC campus, our region’s level 1 trauma hospital. I look forward to the completion of these projects, ensuring their continued operation for years to come.”

New York State Sen. Patrick Gallivan said, “Route 5 is a vital thoroughfare in our community, providing south-town residents with direct access to the City of Buffalo. These bridge projects will improve road conditions and safety for motorists, and illustrate the state's commitment to maintain our infrastructure and support the local economy.”

Assembly Majority Leader Crystal Peoples-Stokes said, “I applaud DOT for their diligence in ensuring the continued safety of its transportation infrastructure for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians. The bridges on Fillmore and Grider avenues provide access to ECMC, the WNY region’s No. 1 trauma center, multiple schools, churches, the Northland Workforce Training facilities, area employers and thousands of households. Thank you keeping our local infrastructure in satisfactory condition.”

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