I-81 Overpass

John Smith/WAER News

  Just days before a public meeting about the replacement of I-81 through Syracuse, a closed door meeting was held today with local and State DOT Officials.  Senator John DeFrancisco brought in engineering plans provided by his constituents.  It calls for building a 1.2 mile tunnel with an overlapping boulevard. 

The State Department of Transportation has released the schedule of the next four neighborhoods meetings about the future of I-81 through Syracuse.  About 100 people turned out for the first one held two weeks ago in Toomey Abbott Towers, a stone’s throw from the highway. 

Regional transportation officials fear the community will be polarized over what to do with the elevated portion of Interstate 81 through Syracuse.  Engineers just got the green light to spend the next few months conducting an environmental impact review of the various options, and narrow them down to one or two.