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What you need to know for 03/26/2017

Deck work starts soon on Western Gateway bridge

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Deck work starts soon on Western Gateway bridge

Commuters using the Western Gateway Bridge connecting Scotia and Schenectady may want to find a diff
Deck work starts soon on Western Gateway bridge
The Western Gateway Bridge.
Photographer: Peter R. Barber

Commuters using the Western Gateway Bridge connecting Scotia and Schenectady may want to find a different route.

Work is scheduled to begin this week on deck replacement, and two lanes of traffic will be closed at a time while work is conducted.

First, the two westbound lanes of the bridge spanning the Mohawk River by Jumpin’ Jacks will be closed and there will be one lane of traffic open in each direction on the other lanes that normally handle eastbound traffic, according to Scotia Mayor Kris Kastberg.

Today, workers will begin setting up traffic cones to lay out the revised traffic pattern, Kastberg said.

Kastberg said he received the notice about the pending closure on Monday. He said he would have appreciated some more advance warning.

“People need to know they’re going to have to find an alternate route if they want to get to work on time,” he said.

Matt Mazzone, chief financial officer of Mazzone Hospitality, said he didn’t think the construction would have too much effect on customers at the Glen Sanders Mansion.

“It’s going to make it a little bit harder for customers for a period of time, but hopefully, it’s going to be well worth it,” he said.

The problems would occur during the peak commuting times of around 8 a.m. and from 4 to 6 p.m., according to Mazzone.

During the other times of the day, Mazzone believes a single lane in each direction can accommodate the traffic.

Jason Watt, founder and general manager of J. Watt’s Barista House on Mohawk Avenue, said he is not sure how the bridge work would affect traffic to his business. He thinks it would slow it down a little bit if traffic backs up.

“A lot of my clientele come from this side of the bridge. We’ll get a bunch of people from the college, but a lot of them also walk,” he said.

This project is included in a $31.3 million contract the state awarded in August for repairs to 13 bridges in the North Country and Capital Region.

Other local bridges that will be fixed as part of this contract are the Crosstown Connection (Route 7) that carries traffic over Interstate 890 in Rotterdam and a bridge on State Street in Schenectady that crosses over the Crosstown Connection.

Kubricky Construction Corp. of Wilton and VHB Engineering, Surveying, & Landscaping Architecture of Albany are partners on the project.

The Western Gateway Bridge work is expected to continue through the winter.

DOT officials were not immediately able to provide further information on Monday about the Western Gateway Bridge work.

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