Getting around Downtown Syracuse seemed a little challenging this morning because of the Interstate 81 South closure at Harrison Street. A local group of business owners, elected officials and community members say it might be a vision of the future.
The deadline to replace the I-81 overpass at the end of its useful life is could result in street-level traffic if the bridge portion is removed. Members of Save I-81.org want the State D-O-T to keep the highway through downtown. Onondaga County Legislator Kathy Rapp is also a member of the Syracuse Metropolitan Transportation Authority.
“I want to ensure that I-81 decision makers in Albany hear the voices of the residents here and are concerned about what the consequences may be. That’s why I’m here today in support of Save I-81 dot org.”
Rapp adds the State D-O-T informed her yesterday that they’re planning plan to provide plenty of opportunity for community input on the project.
BUSINESSES WORRY ABOUT FEWER CUSTOMERS
For businesses south of the I-81 closure at Harrison Street, the prospects of not having the highway through the city is already a bit surreal. Jim Bright... the Owner of Dunk & Bright Furniture on South Salina Street speaks from experience.
“Traffic is about 15 percent this week versus last week when the highway was open. We have a lot of slow traffic in front of our store, which is interesting because the traffic is rerouted right to Salina and Brighton, but not all of those people are coming in, of course."
The members of Save I-81 plan to host several events in the months ahead to serve as a voice for the community’s throughout the city and Onondaga County. Their website is Save 81 dot org.
SAVE I-81 GROUP BOASTS BROAD MEMBERSHIP
Robert Andrews Onondaga County Legislator, 9th districtMark Atkinson Mayor, Village of North SyracuseJim Bright Dunk and BrightTodd Buchko WonderWorksMichael Chapman Chairman, Cayuga County LegislatureJim Corl Supervisor, Town of CiceroPatrick Danial TerakeetJohn Dougherty Onondaga County Legislator, 2nd districtJoseph Emmi Super 8 SyracuseMarc Emmi Hampton Inn LiverpoolCarmen Emmi, Jr Homewood SuitesJoe Falcone Dominick Falcone InsuranceDeborah Gallagher North Area Volunteer Ambulance Corps (NAVAC)Jim Gallagher Holiday InnT-John Goodman Sweet on Chocolate, Armory SquareHolland C Gregg III Executive Director, Citizens to Preserve the Character of Skaneateles (CPCS)Gary Hatfield Supervisor, Town of MoraviaJeff Herrick Supervisor, Town of SennettDavid Heymann Sheraton SyracuseSteve Hughes Tim HortonsBruce Kenan Destiny USADavid Knapp Onondaga County Legislator, 12th districtMichael Lazar Chaiman, Town of DeWitt Planning BoardDanny Liedka Onondaga County Legislator, 7th districtTony Mangano Ramada InnKerry Mannion Member, Town of DeWitt Town BoardBrian May Onondaga County Legislator, 1st districtGary May May's AutoTodd May Southern Wine and SpiritsRyan McMahon Chairman, Onondaga County Legislature, 15th districtEd Michalenko Supervisor, Town of DeWittMark Nicotra Supervisor, Town of SalinaMichael Plochocki Onondaga County Legislator, 6th DistrictKathleen Rapp Onondaga County Legislator, 5th districtTeresa Roney Supervisor, Town of SkaneatelesChristopher Ryan Onondaga County Legislator, 8th DistrictGary Searing Supervisor, Town of FlemingJohn Sposato Sposato CompaniesRichard Sykes The Inns at Armory SquareAnn Marie Taliercio UniteHERE 150Judy Tassone Onondaga County Legislator, 4th districtEd Wagner Supervisor, Town of OwascoGary White Mayor, Village of LiverpoolSteve White Citizens to Preserve the Character of Skaneateles (CPCS)