ELMSFORD, N.Y. – When Elmsford Mayor Robert Williams saw concrete fall from the Sprain Brook Parkway onto Route 119 below, he knew the bridge needed to be fixed. Luckily, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo thought the same thing.
The Sprain Brook Parkway bridge has been called one of the worst in the Hudson Valley. Construction to replace it will begin on Monday. Traffic is expected to congest only slightly. Initial construction plans are that one lane will be closed and overhauled before work starts on the next lane.
The bridge work is part of New York state's multimillion-dollar project to repair bridges throughout the Hudson Valley, as the state noted that one-third of the bridges in New York are subpar.
Noise could be a problem for people living in the area, Williams said, but the final product will be worth the disruptions. In addition, Main Street might have to close every once in a while for construction workers to repair portions of Route 119 directly below the bridge. Williams said the few closings are likely to occur after midnight and could last a few hours.
Shahib Quarie, a resident engineer of the New York State Department of Transportation, said the work will start by putting a three-quarter-inch surface overlay on the bridge's pavement. In some areas where the parkway is worse, construction workers will have to mill before putting in the overlay.
Williams sympathized with residents living near the construction as he, too, lives a few houses away from the bridge off of Hartsdale Road. However, he noted that the construction will benefit the village on a deeper level than just aesthetics.
"The inconveniences will be tough, depending on when they're working," Williams said. "But it has to be done. The bridge is deemed one of the worst. Unfortunately, we have to put up with it."
To ease disturbances, the state said that it will work with Elmsford to lessen any negative impacts, trying to make the construction project as painless as possible.
"The benefits for the short term will be that all the workers will be here," Williams said. "They will be shopping here. They're going to eat and get gas here. Extra people will directly help the businesses of Elmsford. We think the benefits of more people coming to see what we have to offer will definitely payoff later on."
Representatives of the Westchester County Police and Cuomo's New York Works Program could not be reached for comment as of late Friday afternoon.