New study community grid option for I-81 may not be viable

SYRACUSE (WSYR-TV) - A study from the engineering firm Spectra released this week shows the community grid proposal to replace I-81 in Syracuse may no longer be an option. 

The report, which is ten pages long, cites issues like negative traffic impacts, noise, and safety as problems with the grid.

"I would hope that the powers that be would see that these are real problems in the report," Sen. John DeFrancisco (R-NYS Senate). "Those real problems have to be considered before a final solution that we're saddled with for the next 75 years is determined." 

Supporters of the community grid found problems with the report, which was commissioned by the group Save I-81. 

Evan Weissman, who lives in Syracuse, said the study only took several weeks to complete and cost just $5,000.

"We have absolutely no idea how the authors arrived at their conclusion," Weissman said. 

Ultimately, DeFrancisco said opposing views will have to come together to find common ground to move forward on the project. He thinks a combination of a common grid with a 1.2 mile tunnel could be the best option. 

"It's got to be a solution that works," DeFrancisco said. "For the western suburbs, the eastern suburbs, north and south. And people traveling through the city."

 


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