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Changes Detailed For Bear Mountain Parkway In Peekskill

Several safety renovations to the Bear Mountain Parkway have been confirmed by the Department of Transportation for Peekskill and Cortlandt.
Several safety renovations to the Bear Mountain Parkway have been confirmed by the Department of Transportation for Peekskill and Cortlandt. Photo Credit: Art Cusano

PEEKSKILL, N.Y. – The New York State Department of Transportation has announced new information concerning the planned Bear Mountain Parkway safety renovations in Peekskill and Cortlandt.

Three changes to the road project have been confirmed, Peekskill Department of Public Works Director Brent Van Zandt told Common Council members Monday night.

“There’s going to be a westbound deceleration lane to be installed between Locust Avenue and Route 6,” he said. "The two lanes heading eastbound are going to be extended from Carhart [Avenue] all the way to Main [Street], where the original plan showed it dying down shortly after Carhart to one lane.”

The DOT will not widen the road on either side but would restripe the road farther to one side to help accommodate emergency vehicles in several areas where it is a one-lane road, Van Zandt said.

The third change, which would most directly impact Peekskill, is that the left-turn off Highland Avenue onto the westbound lane of the parkway would be eliminated.

“They have no issue putting that in for us as long as we get Pemart [Avenue] to be a two-way to accommodate the additional traffic,” Van Zandt said.

The DOT held public information sessions in February in Peekskill and Cortlandt to get input from residents on how to improve safety on the stretch of road that runs through the two towns.

The $3 million planned safety improvement project on 3.5 miles of the Bear Mountain Parkway comes after the deaths of five people in traffic accidents in the past eight years and about 80 accidents in the past three years on the road. Plans include adding a median barrier, reducing the speed limit on most of the parkway to 45 mph and cutting the four lanes in some areas to two lanes with left-turn slots.

Work on the parkway project would not begin until the fall at the earliest, Van Zandt said.

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