The Federal Transportation Bill of 2005 allotted a significant amount of funds for the reconstruction of the Short Clove Road and Route 9W intersection, which includes construction of twin-bridge overpasses that will carry Short Clove Road over the West Shore Rail Line below. The current intersection is known to be one of the worst in New York State due to high train activity, steep grades, and heavy trucking from the Tilcon quarrying operation nearby. The following press release from the office of New York Senator Charles Schumer details funding and construction plans:
U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today called on New York State to expedite construction on the bridge overpass over the intersection of U.S. Route 9W and Short Clove Road in Haverstraw. Although original indications were that construction could begin as early as 2007, construction is now slated to start in 2009. Schumer helped secure $6 million in federal funding to construct the bridge overpass in the Transportation Reauthorization Bill of 2005.
“The U.S. Route 9W and Short Clove Road bridge overpass project is vital to the Village of Haverstraw,” Schumer said. “This busy corridor gets congested with heavy traffic on a day to day basis and trains frequently block emergency vehicles traveling throughout the region and cause more traffic. The overpass will make much- needed safety improvements to the intersection, improve the flow of traffic, and benefit redevelopment of the waterfront and the Village center. That is why the DOT needs to make this project a priority and begin construction as soon as possible after the design is completed. I would still like to see construction begin next year.”
The overpass in Haverstraw will improve safety and directly benefit planned and current redevelopment of the waterfront within the Village, aiding the economic growth of the Village center and strengthening the area economy as traffic flow through the intersection is improved. The intersection is dangerous because of its slope, configuration, and the active freight rail right of way. With nearly sixty freight trains crossing the intersection daily, the train cars frequently block emergency vehicles traveling throughout the region and regularly block traffic flow on U.S. Route 9W. This interchange is also the primary road for access to the Hudson River Ferry, so it handles heavy commuter traffic for the growing ferry service. In addition, U.S. Route 9W is the principal evacuation route in case of emergency evacuation related to the Indian Point Nuclear Energy Center because the Village of Haverstraw is within the “Emergency Planning Zone” designated by the State of New York Emergency Management Office and Rockland County.
In a personal letter to Thomas J. Madison, Jr., Commissioner of the New York State Department of Transportation, Schumer wrote, “As you can see, we cannot afford a delay on the construction of this overpass. The federal and state funds are in place to begin this project. I urge you to make this important project a top priority for construction in 2007. The Village of Haverstraw is at an economic crossroads, and the construction of this overpass would be of great help.”