TUCKAHOE, N.Y. – Two days after the 18-month anniversary of the beginning of construction on a crumbling retaining wall on Yonkers Avenue, the road re-opened Monday to motorists and pedestrians in Tuckahoe.
The oft-delayed, much-maligned project has drawn the ire of residents and village officials alike, as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which was in charge of construction on the 100-year-old wall, gave five incorrect estimates of when the road would again be open to traffic.
The Tuckahoe Department of Public Works took over the project in mid-December, and Mayor Steve Ecklond said residents have been supportive of the efforts to expedite the process.
“Within three weeks of our possession of the construction site, our team had the road bed excavated, replaced a section of sewer line, replaced a section of utility conduit and poured the concrete roadway and curbing,” he said. “We planned this when the project originally started, and we were glad to finally get the opportunity to perform this portion of the work so we could open the road.”
While the road is open, there still is work to be done at the site. There is some additional curb work that needs to be completed, and lights will be installed – although that will be done with the road staying open to traffic. During the spring, Yonkers Avenue will be paved, which may force a closure for a day, unless the contractor is able to complete one half of the roadway at a time, officials said.
“It’s just such a relief not having to detour around the village to get from one place to another,” said one resident walking her dog on the sidewalk. “It’s been a long road, but we’re just glad it’s finished.”
Ecklond said having Yonkers Avenue re-opened should be a boon to the village economy, not just the residents that have exhausted their patience the last year and a half.
“It is a tremendous assistance to the residents and businesses in not just the lower Lake Avenue area but the entire village,” he said. “The ability to use this road, which allows drivers to circulate around the Yonkers-Lake Avenue area is a real benefit to the restaurants and other businesses that service the area.”
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