Design-Build Process Significantly Accelerates Project Completion, Moving Completion Up 5 Years from 2024 to 2019 Project Will Improve Access and Reduce Traffic Congestion Along Busy Corridor that Serves more than 70,000 Vehicles Daily Cashless Tolling will Further Ease Congestion at Thruway (I-87) Exit 16 Interchange; Rendering Available Here Request for Qualifications Issued February 3; Short List of Qualified Firms to be Announced in Mid-April
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the $150 million reconstruction of the Woodbury Transit and Economic hub will be completed five years ahead of schedule, moving up expected completion of the design-build project from 2024 to 2019. The transit and economic development hub project will further bolster Woodbury Common's booming tourism sector and strengthen the local economy -- creating more than 600 jobs and significantly reducing congestion in the Mid-Hudson region.
Under the innovative project, the State Department of Transportation will expand the Route 32 corridor, replace the Route 32 bridge over Route 17, reconfigure the ramp leading to the New York State Thruway (I-87), and add a solar-powered bus station, an expanded commuter parking lot, and an intelligent transportation system that adapts to changing traffic conditions. Each of these enhancements, including the addition of cashless tolling, will improve access and allow for increased commercial activity.
“This design-build project will significantly accelerate completion of a streamlined, state-of-the-art transportation network at a critical juncture, creating hundreds of jobs and growing the regional economy by improving access to this vital commercial corridor,” Governor Cuomo said. “The overhaul of these roads and traffic patterns, along with the addition of cashless tolling and enhanced public transit options, will ease congestion for those who live, travel, work, eat, and shop here, while supporting the future growth of the Mid-Hudson region.”
Design-Build contracts call for a single team of contractors to be responsible for both designing and building an entire project in order to ensure that coordination is seamless, and that work is completed in the shortest possible time frame. Design-build also provides cost certainty for the state with contractors assuming the risk for project delays and cost overruns.
On February 3, the State issued a Request for Qualifications, giving design-build firms their first chance to make their case to the Department of Transportation that they qualify to compete for the job. The Department of Transportation will review the qualifications of the design-build firms and announce a short list of qualified firms in mid-April. Those firms will then be allowed to submit proposals on this $150 million project, with work scheduled to begin in November 2017 and be completed in November 2019 - five years earlier than originally planned.
As a part of the project, the New York State Thruway Authority will implement cashless tolling at the Harriman Toll Barrier, ensuring that motorists driving through this interchange would be able to pass through more quickly. The Authority will convert the toll barrier for northbound traffic seeking to access Woodbury Common and NY Route 17 exit of the Thruway to cashless tolling. For southbound traffic from the Thruway’s ticketed portion of the system, two toll lanes would remain in place.
The State will continue to work closely with all stakeholders to ensure that this project meets the needs of the community while improving access to area shopping and dining attractions. Woodbury Common Premium Outlets plays an important role in the regional economy creating job, driving tourism, and raising local tax revenue.
To improve mobility and traffic patterns, the project will include:
- Improved access to Woodbury Common Premium Outlets
- Replacing the Route 32 bridge over Route 17, which will include standard Interstate height clearance over Route 17
- Reconstruction and expansion of Park and Ride facilities which will include a bus stop and solar-powered bus station to promote public transit
- Reconfiguring the Route 17, Exit 131 eastbound ramp leading to the Thruway
- A new interconnected and adaptive traffic signal system along Route 32 to minimize delays and enhance access to local businesses and schools
- Intelligent Transportation Systems to adapt to changing traffic conditions and optimize signal responses
This project will reduce travel time for drivers and transit rail and bus riders by relieving congestion while significantly improving access and alleviating bottlenecks. Commuter bus usage will increase from the improved parking facilities, allowing travellers to spend less time traveling to work, reducing carbon emissions and lowering vehicle operating costs.
The overhaul of these roads and traffic patterns, along with the addition of cashless tolling and enhanced public transit options, will ease congestion for those who live, travel, work, eat, and shop here.
Department of Transportation Commissioner Matthew J. Driscoll said, "This design-build project will improve motorist and pedestrian safety for all who live, work, and shop here, helping to ensure the economic competitiveness of the Hudson Valley region for generations to come. We look forward to getting shovels in the ground on this project later this year."
Bill Finch, Acting Executive Director of the New York State Thruway Authority, said, “Building upon the 2016 implementation of cashless tolling at the Tappan Zee Bridge, the conversion at the Harriman Toll Barrier will enable motorists to experience safer and more convenient travel in the Mid-Hudson Valley. This state-of-the-art technology, which is being used on many roads and bridges around the nation, will also ease congestion and help the environment by reducing idling, and the Thruway Authority is proud to be a part of this project.”
Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney, member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, said, “Anyone who drives through southern Orange County knows what it’s like to sit in endless traffic around Woodbury Common, which is why fixing this problem has been my top transportation priority since day one. I want to thank Governor Cuomo for working together - from securing billions in federal transportation funding to investing in state-of-the-art cashless tolling and infrastructure improvements. Smart, responsible investments in our infrastructure make us safer, create hundreds of good-paying jobs, and grow our economy – it’s really a no-brainer.”
Senator William J. Larkin, Jr. said, “This project will make Route 17 and Route 32 safer and create a modern corridor that will be easier and more efficient to navigate for travelers. This project will also support additional community and economic development in the area. Thanks to our steadfast advocacy and Governor Cuomo, the timeline has been dramatically accelerated. This major transportation infrastructure project will bolster economic activity and create jobs in a way that will positively affect the region for decades to come. This is a win for those visiting our area, a win for businesses and a win for all New Yorkers."
Assemblyman James Skoufis said, "Paired with the Exit 131 interchange upgrades, cashless tolling will significantly reduce traffic and better streamline the thousands of vehicles that move through our community each day. I applaud Governor Cuomo for making the Harriman Toll Plaza all-electronic and look forward to its implementation. All together, the project will help ensure the economic viability of our region for years to come."
Orange County Executive Steve Neuhaus said, "Governor Cuomo’s proposal to build the Town of Woodbury Transit and Economic Development Hub is one of the most important projects for the Hudson Valley, and his leadership on this project will ensure its completion and success. With this exciting development, we are one step further in transforming the corridor from a burden into a vital asset. I look forward to working alongside our partners at the state, federal and local level of government to get this critical project completed and to keep moving our region and our economy forward."