Senator Kennedy Joins Cheektowaga Leadership to Announce Millions in State Funding to Reconstruct Busy Walden Avenue Intersection

Construction at Walden and Anderson

$2.3 Million Headed to Town of Cheektowaga to Reconstruct the Intersection of Walden Avenue, Galleria Drive and Anderson Road; Designed to Improve Access and Safety for Motorists, Pedestrians and Cyclists

Announcement Comes A Year After Kennedy Worked with DOT to Improve Dangerous Walden & Harlem Intersection Just Minutes Away

BUFFALO, NY – Senator Tim Kennedy (D-Buffalo) joined Town of Cheektowaga Supervisor Diane Benczkowski on Friday to announce $2.3 million in state funding coming to the town to reconstruct the heavily trafficked intersection of Walden Avenue and Galleria Drive and Anderson Road. The project will aim to improve traffic flow and enhance safety options by widening Walden Avenue to construct an additional left-turn lane for eastbound traffic, as well as widening and reconfiguring lanes on Galleria Drive and Anderson Road. Additionally, audible pedestrian push buttons will be installed featuring countdown timers at designated crosswalks along Walden Avenue.

The project is part of a greater statewide plan dedicated to infrastructure improvement projects. In total, $9.3 million will be coming to both Erie County and Niagara County to help increase pedestrian and motorist safety.

“Strong and safe transportation networks are vital to the successes of our communities. By investing in our infrastructure and projects like this, Governor Cuomo and the Department of Transportation (DOT) are once again demonstrating their commitment to investing in our future,” said Senator Tim Kennedy. “I look forward to seeing this project enhance safety for pedestrians and motorists, as well as streamline traffic patterns overall.”

"Rebuilding Western New York's infrastructure is a top priority and I'm thankful that Cheektowaga and the intersection reconstruction project at Walden, Galleria and Anderson is on the list of projects to be completed," said Cheektowaga Supervisor Diane Benczkowski.  "This project will help relieve traffic congestion allowing easier access to the many businesses and restaurants in the area as well as safer passage through our town for travelers and commuters.  I also applaud the project's added safety features making the intersection more pedestrian friendly.  I thank Senator Tim Kennedy, Assemblymember Monica Wallace and other state officials for recognizing the needs of Cheektowaga and committing the resources necessary to improve our public infrastructure."

“The winning combination of  funding commitments from the legislature and DOT’s follow-through on design and implementation for these projects not only creates jobs, but will ensure the safety and well-being of WNY families who every day worry about the quality of the roads and bridges near their homes and on the routes their children take to school,” said FAIR Committee Chairwoman Carley Hill. “I am proud to once again stand with Senator Kennedy in support of 21st Century infrastructure improvements for New York State. It is critically important to Western New Yorkers that we work towards ensuring safe, quality and reliable infrastructure. Our governor is concerned with upstate and he will work with our local leaders to make our rural and urban transportation systems a priority for agencies and municipalities alike.”

Kennedy has worked with the DOT to revamp sections of Walden Avenue throughout the years. After the death of two Cheektowaga children at the intersection of Walden and Harlem in the span of less than one year, he called on the DOT to overhaul the intersection. The DOT subsequently conducted a comprehensive traffic study, and later completed significant changes to calm traffic and increase pedestrian safety, including the installation of audible walk signs, realigning crosswalks and lowering the speed limit on Walden between Harlem and Galleria Drive.

Two other projects will fall under this multi-million dollar infrastructure improvement plan. The City of Buffalo will see $5.6 million to improve pedestrian accessibility along North and South Division Streets, between Main and Elm Streets and on Elm and Oak Streets. Additionally, $1.4 million will be dedicated to replaced or rehabilitating nine culverts on state routes in the towns of Amherst, Tonawanda, Porter, Wilson and Wheatfield. According to the DOT, these three projects are expected to be completed by the end of 2017.