Aug 05

Businesses to Make Way for Bridge

The Leader-Herald – August 5, 2008

Fonda, NY – Antoinette Capparello is enjoying what will be her last few months in the restaurant and catering business she owns on Route 5.  Capparello will lose her cafe after 18 years, not because of price increases, foreclosure or any other of the multitude of financial troubles affecting businesses. She will close it because of a bridge.

Antoinette Capparello, left, talks with customers Richard Blowers and Robert Green.

When the New York State Department of Transportation begins construction of the new Route 30A bridge, at least two village businesses will lose their locations and three others also may be affected.  Antoinette’s Cafe and Mike’s Pizzeria will be closed to make room for the new bridge. The Fairway Mobile gas station will lose about half its land to the construction. The Dairy Isle ice cream stand and Cathy’s Cafe also may be affected by the construction.

DOT spokeswoman Alice Romynch said the plans are not yet finalized, but the department is going to put the expanded bridge east of where it stands now.  She said the plans should be finalized within the next few months. Construction is slated to be completed in 2009.  As soon as the plans are finalized, a public hearing will be conducted to discuss the new bridge and its impact on the community, Romynch said.

The $3.5 million project will erect a new bridge replacing the almost 60-year-old structure that rises above the CSX railroad tracks.  It will be raised from about 21 feet to 23 feet high, and the state will add a left-turn-only lane from Route 5 west to Route 30A south, a right-turn-only lane from Route 5 east to Route 30A south and a left-turn-only lane from Route 30A to Route 5 west.

The bridge will remain open during construction to ensure traffic is not delayed. Approximately 11,000 vehicles travel over the bridge in a given day, and about 13 percent are tractor-trailers.  In 30 years, the DOT projects, the number will increase to 17,000. (…)

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