Senator Jim Tedisco (R,C-Glenville) and Assemblywoman Mary Beth Walsh (R,C-Ballston) today are renewing their call for the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT) to enhance public safety and reduce costs for local taxpayers regarding the reoccurring bridge strikes taking place in the Town of Glenville in Schenectady County, particularly the railroad overpass on Glenridge Road.
These bridge strikes are not only dangerous and a nuisance, but also incredibly burdensome and expensive for the localities in which they continue to occur.
“We’ve asked repeatedly for the DOT to do something to enhance traffic safety at the Glenridge Road bridge overpass in Glenville and all we’ve gotten is half-measures and excuses. Meanwhile, at the Glenridge Road bridge overpass, it’s like ‘Groundhog Day’ on a regular basis with one bridge strike after another putting lives at risk and burdening local taxpayers. It’s time for the state to listen to myself and Assemblywoman Walsh as well as Town Supervisor Chris Koetzle and the Town of Glenville and take action to potentially save lives,” said Senator Jim Tedisco. “This is not only an economic development issue for Glenville and the 49th Senate District in terms of impact on local taxpayers and traffic tie-ups on this busy connector between Glenville and Clifton Park, it’s also a public safety matter because heaven-forbid a truck gets stuck under the bridge and its roof goes flying into the windshield of an oncoming automobile.”
“Despite diligent efforts by the Town of Glenville, the number of bridge strikes that occur at the Glenridge Road overpass continues to rise,” said Assemblywoman Mary Beth Walsh. “While the NYS Department of Transportation has previously acknowledged the severity of this issue and took steps to try to mitigate future incidents from happening, it remains clear that more action is necessary. Supervisor Koetzle has demonstrated great commitment to working with the state to implement a cost-effective solution that addresses the public safety concerns for those passing through the heavily trafficked area between Glenville and Clifton Park. Today, we are once again asking the Governor and DOT to review and support the plausible solutions that have been put forward by the Town of Glenville.”
The Town of Glenville has gone above and beyond in trying to raise awareness to the issue in an effort to prevent future strikes, but as they continue to occur, Senator Tedisco and Assemblywoman Walsh are supporting their request to DOT for the following proposals:
1. NYSDOT implements a truck route that would prevent trucks from using Glenridge Road between Route 146 and the “Glenridge Circle” at the intersection of Maple, Glenridge and Hetcheltown. This proposed truck rout would begin at Route 146 and 146A; it would proceed down 146 to Aqueduct Road, over to Maxon, then back up Freemans Bridge Rd. All roads involved are exclusively state and county owned roads and would require NYSDOT involvement to coordinate and execute a safe and cost-effective solution.
2. Implementation of an electronic detection system near the 146 intersection so that it can adequately warn drivers that there is a low bridge ahead. This technology must would be deployed in a location before Blue Barnes Road and Bruce Drive and before the truck enters the “Glenridge Road corridor.” Beyond these locations there are no opportunities for the driver to turn around, and therefore this placement would allow for the safest of options.
Tedisco and Walsh previously called on the Governor and DOT to use state funding from the state’s bridge strike prevention fund to add electronic adjustable message signs, bridge lighting, communication improvements to help local law enforcement redirect any potentially problematic vehicles, and an over-height detector similar to those that have been implemented in the Hudson Valley and Long Island.
Tedisco and Walsh’s letter to the DOT is attached.