Largest Ever DOT Project in Utica Enhances Mobility and Safety along Mohawk Valley's Busiest Roadway
Project Also Provides Significant Enhancements for Pedestrians and Cycling Enthusiasts in the Mohawk Valley
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the completion of the $66.5 million North-South Arterial reconstruction project in the City of Utica, Oneida County. The project is a record investment in the mobility and safety of the highest volume roadway in the Mohawk Valley and replaced the 55-year old elevated viaduct carrying Routes 5, 8 and 12 through the City of Utica with a grade-separated interchange that improves access in all directions. This was the largest project ever undertaken by the State Department of Transportation in the City of Utica.
"This unprecedented investment helps to reshape downtown Utica, providing a safer, more modern highway, enhancing mobility and supporting business and economic growth in the Mohawk Valley," Governor Cuomo said. "Across the state, we are investing in critical upgrades to roads and bridges to strengthen our infrastructure for future generations."
The North-South Arterial is a main thoroughfare for the Mohawk Valley Region, passing through the western part of Utica. It provides vital connections to the NYS Thruway and the Adirondacks, facilitating the flow of business to and from the Utica area. It also connects the North SUNYIT Campus through Utica to other major highways in the area, such as New York State Routes 5, 8, 12 and 840.
The new highway, which is on a new alignment, is carried over Court Street at a new, grade-separated interchange improving access in all directions. This Single Point Urban Interchange opened in June, and its modern design is only one of a few operating in the state.
The project also provides significant enhancements for pedestrians and cyclists with a new pedestrian bridge - which opened in 2014 - restyled crossings, and a 10-foot-wide, multi-use trail that connects West Utica neighborhoods and which will provide access to the Erie Canal Trail. The Art Park at the base of the pedestrian bridges provides respite for travelers and a new location for community events.
The project additionally provides new green and open space to the area, LED lighting and 12 artistic sculptured panels on the bridge abutments, which were chosen by the community and pictorially convey the rich history of the area and the transportation corridor.
Project elements also included:
- A new ramp from eastbound Route 5A providing direct access to LaFayette and Varick Streets and Utica's historic brewery district;
- A widened Court Street between State Street and Huntington Street;
- Improved configuration of the ramps at the interchange of Routes 5A and 5S;
- The construction of an acceleration lane at the end of the ramp from southbound Routes 5, 8 and 12 to westbound Route 5A
- Rehabilitated pavement on State Street between Roberts Street and Ramp K, as well as on Lincoln Avenue between Newell Street and Court Street
- Upgraded traffic signals on State Street at the intersections of Court Street, Columbia Street, LaFayette Street and Ramp K to improve traffic efficiency.
- An extended Lincoln Avenue that meets Burrstone Road at a new traffic signal this provides improved access to businesses along this corridor.
- Extended Champlin Avenue to intersect with Route 5A, which provides an alternate emergency route for the area and improves access to the Saint Lukes Hospital and Utica College campus.
Minor finishing work on the project will continue into early next year, including landscaping, sidewalk and multiuse trail work, and some milling and paving on Lincoln Avenue. Work on the adjacent Utica downtown road network, including Columbia and Lafayette Streets, will be completed by the end of the year, which will enhance the thriving Arts and Brewery Districts within the city.
Senator Joseph Griffo said, "For the last several years, we have eagerly awaited the completion of the North-South Arterial reconstruction project in Utica. This major project, which has seen a significant financial investment by the state of $66.5 million, has greatly improved an outdated and unsafe thoroughfare by making needed safety enhancements and making it easier for motorists and others to travel throughout the city and region. Plus, it improves our infrastructure, which is a vital component of economic development. I would like to thank the state Department of Transportation and all the contractors who worked on the project for their efforts in making sure it was successfully completed."
Assemblyman Anthony Brindisi said, "The Arterial project has been a great success, resulting in a new roadway that truly connects Utica and surrounding areas, and has greatly improved visibility and safety for drivers and pedestrians alike. The Department of Transportation has worked well with members of the community and other agencies to finish a project that is truly an asset for the region. The completion of this modern highway will help boost the economy of Utica and nearby communities for years to come."
Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. said, "The Arterial project is an essential component to the growth and economic development of Oneida County and the entire region," said Oneida County Executive Anthony J. Picente Jr. "I am very pleased that after years of hard work by the state Department of Transportation this crucial thoroughfare has now been successfully updated, and I would like to thank Governor Cuomo for his investment in our community."
Utica Mayor Robert M. Palmieri said, "This is a great day in the City of Utica as the North-South Arterial is now completed. I thank Governor Cuomo for his vision and continued dedication to our region, as well as, the New York State Department of Transportation and our State delegation. This project represents a record investment that will greatly improve the Quality of Life, connectivity and safety our everyone traveling on the Arterial."
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