Local News

Local news

Scott Willis / WAER News

The state of New York is partnering with communication companies as part of a continuing effort to push broadband into more isolated areas.  Without broadband, people in these areas rely on dial-up internet, which means lower transfer speeds and available bandwidth.

Bob Gates

More than 100 acres of land on a hilltop in Cazenovia with walking trails and an extensive display of art sculptures will be able to continue following a generous gift left behind by one of its founders.  The place is known as Stone Quarry Hill Art Park.  Friends of Dorothy Riester say that she viewed - life itself - as a work of art.  Longtime friend and Stone Quarry Hill Art Park Historian Steven Waldron recalls a particular visit with Dorothy.

Kijin Higashibaba

The original construction of Interstate 81 through Syracuse changed the city and region forever. Now there are plans to tear down the highway and there are some who see the replacement process as a chance to help Syracuse’s poverty problem.  The highway and poverty are linked in surprising ways, WAER's Kijin Higashibaba reports in Part 2 of their examination of I-81 and poverty. 

Go to citylimitsproject.org to hear the full, unabridged version of this episode. 

Scott Willis/WAER News

Advocates for criminal justice reform in Onondaga County want the system to be more fair. They’re concerned with how people of color and people without resources are treated.  When people are a waiting trial, Retired judge Langston McKinney says many find themselves locked up unnecessarily.  He argues judges don’t always understand bail. 

City Limits: I-81 And Racial Segregation In Syracuse

Mar 7, 2018

Interstate 81 that runs through Syracuse has outlived its useful life and there are plans to tear it down. What comes next is a very hot topic at the moment. There are some who see the future of the highway as an opportunity to make a difference in the staggering racial segregation and poverty in the city. As a part of WAER's Poverty Project, Kijin Higashibaba look into the highway's past to understand why. 

Go to citylimitsproject.org to hear the full, unabridged version of this episode. 

Leo Tully / WAER News

Mayor Ben Walsh put his mark on history this morning by signing his name in Syracuse’s Mayoral Autograph Book in the Onondaga Historical Association Museum. The signature marks the 52nd to be added since Syracuse’s first mayor, Harvey Baldwin, added his autograph in 1848.

Walsh’s name also sits alongside his grandfather’s, William Walsh, who served as the 48th mayor of Syracuse from 1962 to 1969. 

Jubilee Initiative Hosts Vigil to Honor Florida Shooting Victims

Feb 19, 2018
Lileana Pearson / WAER NEWS

A group of Syracuse residents are saying thoughts and prayers are not enough in the wake of last week’s Florida school shooting. Instead, they are getting out into the community to discover what they can do to help.

This past Saturday, a group of peace activists called the Jubilee Initiative hosted a vigil in honor of those affected by the Florida school shooting.  Several Syracuse residents gathered at Willow Bay on Onondaga Lake to pay their respects to those whose lives were lost, but more importantly, to start a conversation about safety in schools.

Chris Bolt/WAER News

Can your smart phone make you safer in the City of Syracuse?  Mayor Ben Walsh joined members of the Syracuse Police Department to roll out new technology to help reduce crime and improve community relations. You might have a phone app to find your way around or get a ride, maybe check the weather or play a game. Deputy Chief Joe Cecile wants you to get another app for community benefit.


An Associate Political Science Professor at Syracuse University’s Maxwell School says both Republicans and Democrats should be able to come together on reaching an immigration deal.  Elizabeth Cohen thinks that President Trump isn’t providing a clear picture of what U.S. immigration really resembles and she feels that he continues to portray immigrants as criminals.

John Smith / WAER News

It’s National ‘Go Red for Women Day’ and aside from Central New Yorkers wearing red, you might have noticed many of the buildings around the City of Syracuse lit-up in red to raise awareness and funds to fight cardiovascular disease.  According to the American Heart Association, only 17 percent of women consider heart disease to be the greatest health problem in America today.  Local spokesperson Kristy Smorol is determined to defeat the number one killer of women.