Bicyclist and Pedestrian Path Will Provide New Way for Residents and Visitors to Enjoy Popular Long Island Beach, Connect to the Mainland and Other State Parks
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that construction will begin this winter on the Jones Beach Shared Use Path, a $3.5 million project that will significantly expand cyclist and pedestrian access to Long Island and one of its most popular beaches. The new project also complements more than $25 million in additional infrastructure work occurring on roadways around Jones Beach to help ease travel and enhance traffic safety on Long Island.
"Jones Beach is one of New York's most beloved state parks and this new path will connect runners, walkers and cyclists to miles of recreation and white sand on the Atlantic Ocean," Governor Cuomo said. "Through historic investments in our infrastructure, New York is not only modernizing roads, bridges, rail systems and airports, but improving recreational trails to help make Jones Beach and other natural treasures more accessible for everyone."
On Long Island's South Shore, the new Jones Beach Shared Use Path will connect to the Ocean Parkway Greenway Shared Use Path near the East Bathhouse in Jones Beach. On the west end, the new path will connect to the Greenway by way of the eastbound section of the Bay Parkway and the Jones Beach Boardwalk. Beach appropriate vegetation and bike racks will also be installed along the path, as well as traffic control signage and lighting.
The approximately 4.5-mile-long paved path is being built under a contract with the New York State Department of Transportation in cooperation with the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation. Visible construction of the path will begin this winter. Project completion is scheduled for the summer of 2019.
To harden infrastructure and improve travel safety for residents and visitors throughout Long Island, DOT continues to make further enhancements to roadways, including on the way in and out of Jones Beach. The drawbridges on both the Meadowbrook State Parkway and nearby Loop Parkway are currently undergoing a $22.5 million maintenance project that is expected to finish in the spring of 2019. Crews are working from barge boats to replace steel on the piers, span, and frame of the bridges, to upgrade the spanlock mechanism which keeps the bridge secured. They are also working to improve the system controls for motor, brakes, and lighting.
Beachgoers may also have noticed new monuments erected, welcoming them to Jones Beach on the Wantagh State Parkway and the Ocean Parkway this past summer. Two beautiful new stone structures were built as part Governor Cuomo's vision to enhance the historic getaway for tourists and Long Island's beach lovers.
In addition, when leaving Jones Beach, motorists will soon have an upgraded variable message sign on the Meadowbrook State Parkway near the Loop Parkway with LED technology and new fused lenses that will make the signs easier to read when displaying crash alerts, travel times, and other important communications. This is just one piece of a $3.9 million project retrofitting a quarter of the variable message signs on 13 of Long Island's highways, which is scheduled to be completed next spring.
"Governor Cuomo knows that transportation supports mobility and local economic growth and that's exactly what these continued investments made at Jones Beach are doing," State Department of Transportation Commissioner Paul A. Karas said. "The State Department of Transportation is pleased to partner with the State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation on the Jones Beach Shared Use Path, providing another way for Long Islanders and their guests to enjoy that magnificent Long Island tourist attraction."
"The Jones Beach Shared Use Path project will provide residents and visitors an easier and active alternative to explore and connect with one of Long Island's premier destinations," said State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey. "I applaud Governor Cuomo for his continued commitment to provide the very best in recreational opportunities by revitalizing our parks on Long Island and across the entire state."
Senator John Brooks said, "The start of construction on the Jones Beach Shared Use Path is essential to improving the experience of beachgoers year-round. I commend Governor Cuomo for investing in this project to help connect residents and visitors with one of our most popular beaches and providing the very best opportunities to remain active and healthy while enjoying all that New York State has to offer."
Assemblyman David McDonough said, "I am pleased that this construction is going to begin as this will be a great improvement to the Jones Beach Shared Use Path and will be utilized and enjoyed by many pedestrians and bicyclists."
Motorists are reminded that fines are doubled for speeding in work zones. In accordance with the Work Zone Safety Act of 2005, convictions of two or more speeding violations in a work zone could result in the suspension of an individual's driver's license.