Tappan Zee Bridge Replacement Timetable Moved Up

In an interesting turn of events, the timetable for the replacement of the Tappan Zee Bridge has been moved up, irrespective of the current state of the economy. Primarily because of its inclusion, as one of 14 other projects, on a fast track list by President Obama, it is expected to receive an expedited federal review and approval. Construction could begin as early as Spring of 2013. The current price tag for the new bridge is set at $5.2 billion.
The proposed bridge, carrying I-287 over the Hudson between Tarrytown and Nyack, would feature 8 lanes, 4 in each direction along with wider shoulders and bike and walking paths. One notable difference however between the new bridge in its current iteration and most of the previous proposals is the sudden lack of mass transit options. There are to be no Bus Rapid Transit or Commuter Rail Transit services included, for what now would seem to be a significantly scaled back project. This omission does not sit well with most elected officials or residents, who envisioned the mass transit option as a great forward thinking way, to alleviate what are expected to be ever-increasing traffic loads on the roadways and pollution concerns in an ever greener world. Granted, the mass transit options would at least triple the price of the bridge, but from the aspect of long-range planning, a concept perhaps not fully explored with the current deteriorating structure, this would seem to be a glaring omission. As always, it is still a mystery to all concerned as to the actual funding sources for the bridge. At the moment though, the more pressing concerns are to get the mass transit options back on the table.

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