WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. -- Two bridges that are used for the Saw Mill River Parkway in Mount Kisco and New Castle will be replaced with the help of $17.1 million in state funds, Gov. Andrew Cuomo's and State Sen. Terrence Murphy's offices each announced.
The Mount Kisco bridge goes over the Kisco River while the New Castle bridge goes over the Branch Brook, the offices added.
Cuomo lives in northern New Castle; his home is also near the the Saw Mill. Murphy represents New Castle and Mount Kisco in his district.
"The project will include replacing the bridge that carries the Saw Mill River Parkway over the Kisco River and build a new bridge to replace the culvert that carries the Parkway over the Branch Brook," a project overview states. "The two new bridges will be wider and five feet higher than the existing bridge and culvert to help prevent flooding and road closures during future extreme weather events. New guide rails, bridge rails and a concrete median barrier along the Saw Mill River Parkway will also be installed as part of the project.
"With unpredictable and extreme weather on the rise, now is the time to strengthen critical bridge and parkway systems across New York to withstand future weather events," Cuomo said in a statement. "This project is essential to the safety of New Yorkers throughout the Mid-Hudson Valley, and as we continue to rebuild our bridges and roadways, we will ensure this state is stronger and more resilient than ever before."
“As our communities continue to grow, we need to build modern bridges that can withstand the rigors of our ever-changing weather and handle dense traffic. Investing in our local infrastructure is an important initiative that not only improves safety but provides local jobs and promotes economic development within our region,” Murphy said in a statement. “This project is of critical importance which will improve the Saw Mill Parkway and address the flooding issues that have plagued Mt. Kisco, New Castle and the surrounding areas.”
The work will be done in multiple phases, with first involving northbound work from April to June, the elected officials' offices stated, adding that traffic for both directions will be temporarily shifted onto the southbound side.
The second phase, according to the officials' offices, will involve the southbound side from July through December. Traffic for both directions will be temporarily rerouted to the northbound side of the parkway, the officials' offices added.
The project's anticipated completion is in December, according to the announcements.
“We applaud Governor Cuomo and Senator Murphy’s commitment to rebuild critical infrastructure across New York State," New Castle Supervisor Rob Greenstein said in a statement. "I was especially pleased to hear funding for a bridge on the Saw Mill River Parkway."
Greenstein also called for funding to construct an addition bridge over the Saw Mill, which would be to replace the railroad grade crossing that has been a cause of worry for safety.
"We continue our efforts to obtain support and funding for another bridge on the Saw Mill River Parkway. A bridge on Roaring Brook Road over the Saw Mill River Parkway would not only reduce traffic congestion but would significantly improve safety on the Saw Mill Parkway by eliminating a traffic light. It would also significantly improve safety on Roaring Brook Road by eliminating a dangerous on-grade railroad crossing.”
The funding for the bridges comes from the state's Empire Bridge program, Cuomo's office stated, adding that the program has $542 million in total funding.
U.S. Rep Nita Lowey and state Assemblyman David Buchwald, whose districts overlap with the projects, praised the measures in two provided statements.
"The reconstruction projects in Mount Kisco and New Castle will make the Saw Mill River Parkway more resilient in extreme weather events and safer for everyone in our community," Lowey said. "I am pleased the Empire Bridge Program will update critical infrastructure in the Lower Hudson Valley, and as Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee, I will continue working to increase federal investments in infrastructure."
"I am very pleased that Governor Cuomo's Empire Bridge program has come to New Castle and Mt. Kisco," Buchwald said. "The Saw Mill River Parkway is a vital thoroughfare in Westchester. The $17.1 million is an excellent investment in our area’s infrastructure and these new bridges will serve the growing number of travelers on the Saw Mill River Parkway safely and efficiently."