Tag Archive | "New York State Department of Transportation"

Route 27 Repaving Starts This Week in Southampton

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Portable work lights have been placed along Route 27 in Bridgehampton in preparation for a major repaving project, much of which will take place at night. Stephen J. Kotz photo

By Stephen J. Kotz

The New York State Department of Transportation will try a somewhat novel approach for the East End when it starts a major repaving project on Route 27 between Southampton and East Hampton towns this week.

According to Eileen Peters, a DOT spokeswoman, contractors working on the project will work on a single lane, detouring traffic to one of the shoulders, over short stretches of ¼-to½ mile and also do much of the work at night in an effort to reduce the inconvenience to motorists who rely on the highway as the main thoroughfare between the two towns.

“We are not closing any lanes. We are shifting lanes,” said Ms. Peters. “They will not be working on the length of road, only on smaller sections.”

She added, though, that motorists should still expect to encounter some temporary lane closures, particularly when operations are being set up along a given section of road.

Daytime work will take place between 10 a.m. and 3 p.m., to avoid causing tie-ups during the morning and afternoon trade parades. Aided by generator powered work lights that passersby may have already noticed springing up along the roadside, workers will return at night, between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., to work in downtown areas and at busy intersections to further reduce disruptions during peak travel times.

In addition, the DOT will work up until the Memorial Day weekend before suspending the project, if it is not completed by then, until after Labor Day.

The DOT listened to “businesses who don’t want any construction after Memorial Day,” Ms. Peters said.

The project, she said, is weather-dependent, although the DOT is confident it will be completely finished by the end of the year.

A total of 8.2 miles will be repaved during the $7.6-million project, starting at the intersection of Route 27 and County Road 39, on the edge of Southampton Village and continuing east to Stephen Hands Path in East Hampton.

“We have been monitoring the condition of the pavement,” said Ms. Peters. “The last time it was repaved was 10 to 12 years ago, which is about average.”

She said short sections of the road already have been repaved as part of other construction projects more recently and that the DOT has tried to patch potholes along the heavily traveled road as often as possible.

Last year, the DOT repaved Route 27 from Stephen Hands Path to the Cove Hollow Road in East Hampton Village.

During the project, workers will use large milling machines to grind off the existing layer of worn asphalt, which will be hauled back to asphalt plants to be melted down and recycled for other uses, before adding a fresh layer of asphalt.

When the project is completed, along with the typical lane markings, the DOT will mark the shoulders to indicate they are bicycle lanes “to make it sure that motorists are sharing the road,” Ms. Peters said. More visible pedestrian-crosswalks will also be part of the project.

Motorists will be warned in advance of any lane closures via portable electronic road signs. The DOT has asked drivers who cannot use alternate routes to drive carefully through the work zone.

“It will be rough. There will be some inconveniences,” said Ms. Peters, who asked that motorist remain patient during the construction project. “We are rebuilding the road.”

Up-to-date traffic information can be obtained by calling 511 or visiting www.511NY.org.  In addition, travel information can be obtained from the INFORM Transportation Management Center cameras at www.INFORMNY.com or on handheld devices at www.INFORMNY.mobi.


UPDATE: Town Declares State of Emergency; Nine Inches of Snowfall on the East End

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A backyard pool in East Hampton Friday morning.

A backyard pool in East Hampton Friday morning. (Tessa Raebeck photo).

By Tessa Raebeck

UPDATE Friday 11 a.m. 

Nine inches of snow fell in Bridgehampton overnight, according to Joey Picca of the National Weather Service. Light snow is ongoing and over the next hour, locations on the East End could see another half inch of snow.

“For the most part,” said Picca, “intensity is winding down and we expect that trend to continue for the next hour or so.”

Winds coming from the north and northwest remain strong and gusty, and the already fallen powder will continue to be blown around throughout the day. The wind chill is expected to remain at anywhere from 0 to -5 degrees throughout the afternoon.

The Town of Southampton has issued a blizzard warning, effective until 1 p.m. Friday.

The South Shore of Suffolk County is under coastal flood advisory Friday from 7 p.m. to midnight. The northwest region of Suffolk County has been issued a coastal flood warning, from 9 p.m. Friday until 2 a.m. Saturday.

All town offices in Southampton and East Hampton are closed Friday due to inclement weather. Many businesses in Sag Harbor and throughout the towns remain closed.

East Hampton Town is still urging residents to stay off the roads and has prohibited parking along public roadways. Any parked vehicles may be towed. Emergencies should be reported via 911 and storm-related non-emergency calls may be directed to 907-9743 or 907-9796.

A man walks down Main Street in Sag Harbor Thursday afternoon.

A man walks down Main Street in Sag Harbor Thursday afternoon. (Tessa Raebeck photo).


UPDATE Thursday 6 p.m.

East Hampton Town Supervisor Larry Cantwell has declared a State of Emergency, effective 4 p.m. Thursday.

The town is urging residents to refrain from driving during the storm and has prohibited all parking along public roadways. Parked vehicles may be towed.

The LIE (Long Island Expressway) and other major roads will also be closing at midnight due to hazardous conditions, Governor Cuomo announced Thursday.

Southampton Town has declared a limited state of snow emergency, effective at 3 p.m. Thursday. All town facilities and government offices will be closed starting at 6 p.m. and remain closed on Friday, January 3.

The Sag Harbor School District has closed all buildings and cancelled all sports and other activities for Friday, January 3 due to the weather.

All East Hampton Town Senior Citizen programs at the Fireplace Road Facility and the Montauk Playhouse scheduled for Friday have been cancelled.

For non-emergency police calls related to the storm in East Hampton Town, contact 907-9743 or 907-9796.


Original Story

A blizzard warning has been issued for Suffolk County starting at 6 p.m. this evening and ending at 1 p.m. Friday. The East End can expect to see up to 10 inches of snowfall, according to Tim Morrin of the National Weather Service’s Upton, New York forecast office.

Most of the snowfall will occur tonight after 7 p.m., Morrin said. A steady, heavy snowfall is expected to start this evening and continue overnight and into tomorrow morning, with a total of eight to 10 inches of snow accumulating.

By Friday at noon, the snow “should be nothing more than a flurry,” Morrin said.

Following the blizzard, the National Weather Service expects the weather Friday to be extremely windy and “dangerously cold,” with the wind chill temperature dropping below zero.

Sustained winds of 25 to 35 mph with gusts of up to 45 mph are forecast.

On the roads, East End residents can expect “rapidly deteriorating conditions tonight and into tomorrow morning,” according to Morrin.

Road conditions will remain hazardous tomorrow afternoon, as the windy conditions will likely blow additional snow into the road and add density to the already fallen snow.

Although Governor Andrew Cuomo has yet to shut down the Long Island Expressway or any other major highways, his New York City Press Office said the governor is projecting road closures.

“Blowing, drifting snow can make travel difficult and dangerous,” Governor Cuomo said in a press release issued Wednesday, “so I encourage citizens to exercise caution if they have to leave their homes.”

“We recommend,” he added, “that everyone in potentially affected areas utilize mass transit and take steps to safeguard against frigid temperatures. Keep a close eye on the weather, follow any instructions issued by local emergency officials, and check on your neighbors and family members.”

The Suffolk County Department of Public Works has been salting all county roads since early this morning and will continue to monitor and respond to conditions.

The Emergency Operations Centers for both New York State and Suffolk County are open.

All storm-related non-emergency police calls in Suffolk County can be directed to 852-2677.

The New York State Department of Transportation provides a travel advisory system with frequently updated reports. To access it, dial 511 by phone or visit 511ny.org.

Targeting Jermain Avenue for Traffic Calming

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After two serious car accidents involving a black oak on Jermain Avenue led Sag Harbor Village officials to level the historic tree this fall, some village residents cried foul, pointing instead to what they perceived as a dangerous roadway prone to speeding drivers and a need for traffic calming improvements.

While many may think drivers routinely tear up Jermain Avenue, t he truth appears to be somewhat tamer. A study completed at the request of Sag Harbor Village Mayor Greg Ferraris by the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) shows that drivers are, on average, traveling fairly close to the speed limit.

Between Wednesday, October 22 and Thursday, October 30 the NYSDOT conducted a speed count study on the section of Jermain Avenue between Joel’s Lane and Madison Street. The study was meant to target specifically the part of Jermain Avenue where the historic oak once stood, in order to try and determine whether cars generally sped over the 25 miles-per-hour speed limit posted on the road.

Driving westbound on the roadway, the NYSDOT clocked an average speed of 28.6 miles per hour, while eastbound travel showed a slower average speed of 21 miles-per-hour. In both directions, not a single car drove over 45 miles per hour.

“Was it surprising to me? I wouldn’t say so,” said Ferraris on Wednesday. “The statistics depict what the reality is. A lot of times, when people become emotional about an issue, things like this can get exaggerated, which I can understand. I have witnessed people speeding on that road, as have many people in the village, but what this shows is it is obviously not as rampant as some would think.”

However, the village still intends to explore the possibility of traffic calming projects on Jermain Avenue, he added, despite the study. Ferraris said a contiguous sidewalk from the schools to Mashashimuet Park was a priority, and that he and village clerk Sandra Schroeder had already met with a representative from a leading traffic consulting firm on Long Island to discuss the village’s other needs on Jermain and possible solutions.

“Most of this would have to go out for bid, if it is approved by the public,” noted Ferraris. “The concept has been well-received by the public, but there needs to be a clear consensus for us to move forward with these projects.”

Traffic calming on Jermain Avenue was first discussed last year as a part of Safe Routes to School, a federally funded program implemented at the state level that provided matching grants for traffic calming improvements in an effort to encourage students walking and biking to school. The village, which did not have the budgeted monies up front to apply for the program on its own, had sought the aid of the Town of Southampton, which while originally supportive, eventually pulled out due to jurisdictional issues.

However, during the village’s exploration of the program it did have a traffic study completed, outlining a number of suggestions by the state DOT should the Safe Routes to School program move forward in Sag Harbor. The village still has the study as a resource, although on Wednesday, Ferraris noted the some-million dollars in improvements may not be necessary in order for the village to achieve its goals. In fact, after the preliminary meeting with the traffic engineer, he said there are a number of affordable improvements that can go a long way towards increasing safety on Jermain Avenue.

“You can look at the project from two ends – signing and re-striping of intersections and improving and promoting pedestrian walkways to the other end where we are looking at reconstruction and re-engineering with ideas like raised crosswalks,” said Ferraris. “I was very pleased in speaking with the consultant that in his mind he would like to see what we need accomplished in the most cost effective manner. He said often those measures are in fact the most effective.”

What will likely not be cost effective is the contiguous sidewalk, but Ferraris said he was committed to the idea, although the village will have to explore how it can logistically accomplish the goal without breaking the bank.

“But anything is better than what we have right now,” he said.