As you may be aware, the NYS Thruway Authority and the NYS Department of Transportation are evaluating future options to refurbish or replace the currently ailing Tappan Zee Bridge.
Numerous options, such as an expanded bridge replacement are being considered and are under further review. A tunnel option has been rejected.
We, as community residents, are extremely concerned about how these options are being evaluated with respect to their environmental impact to the Hudson River, Westchester County air quality, health effects, traffic flow and noise levels. Potential land seizures and building and on-going maintenance costs are also of concern.
We believe that a tunnel to either supplement or replace the bridge’s transportation load is a viable option, which in fact may be optimally cost and time effective, and less hazardous to the surrounding environment.
Attached for your review, please find a short paper presenting our undertanding of the current situation and our concluding position. We invite you to join a discussion of this situation at an open community meeting on Tuesday, September 19th at 7:30pm in the clubhouse of the Quay Condo complex. All are welcome and encouraged to attend. For further information, please contact Sherry Alperstein at (914) 909-0210.
THE LOOMING PROBLEM
What we are trying to remedy:
1) The air we breathe is toxic and threatens the health of everyone in the area. This is especially true for children under 7 years of age, adults over 70, and people who are already ill. We have been out-of-compliance with the Federal Clean Air Act for years.
We are in imminent danger of suffering notoriously high cancer, asthma, and lung disease rates as are people living near the Cross Bronx Expressway. We insist that New York State government remedy this situation in the planning for a new Hudson River crossing.
At present, over 135,000 vehicles cross the TZB daily. By 2020, there will be an expected 20 to 30% increase in volume. A larger bridge will add substantially to the threat to our health.
2) Apart from this real threat to our health, emergency repairs and traffic tie-ups on the Tappan Zee Bridge are growing more frequent. A major renovation seems increasingly more critical. We believe that the best TZB option is for renovation, not enlargement, which will cost us $14.5 billion dollars. Our plan is supported by the Riverkeeper organization, which labeled the new and expanded bridge option, "a boondoggle."
A dedicated truck tunnel is far less expensive than a new bridge. It could also carry a mass-transit component. This would eliminate 8 million truck trips per year on the bridge, improve traffic flow and greatly reduce the fouling of the Hudson River. Diesel emissions are not only highly toxic to us, they also contaminate the river environment.Submitted by:
Sherwood Chorost – CCRD, Westchester Chapter Chair
George Sherman – CCRD, Rockland Chapter President