HALFMOON, N.Y. — Plans were released last week for replacing a problematic culvert on South Main Street near the border with the City of Mechanicville. The culvert carries an unnamed tributary under the roadway to the Hudson River.

In a Feb. 5 presentation to the Town Board, state Department of Transportation project manager Kelly Kircher said replacing the culvert is part of Gov. Cuomo’s $262 million BRIDGE NY Program. The program, which was announced in November 2018, will pay for replacing or improving bridges and other infrastructure projects in the state.

The Town Halfmoon was awarded $863,040 to have the culvert work done by DOT.

The South Main Street project will be combined with four other culvert projects nearby that have also been awarded funding. Kircher said the towns of Edinburg and Cambridge will each have a single culvert replaced while the Town of Greenwich will have work done on two culverts.

The BRIDGE NY initiative focuses on projects across the state that address deteriorated structural conditions. The work will mitigate weight restrictions or long detours, facilitate economic development or increase competitiveness, and in some cases reduce the risk of flooding.

In announcing the program in late 2018 the Cuomo administration said the state was making funding available for local governments to rehabilitate and replace bridges and culverts statewide. A total of 165 bridge and infrastructure projects were eventually awarded grant money through the program.

The Capital Region was awarded $29.53 million from the funding pot for 24 projects; 15 of them were culverts like the one in Halfmoon.

The South Main Street project is not expected to get underway until the summer of 2021. When it does the new culvert will be wider, taller and longer than the one running under the road today.

The replacement culvert will be nearly 17 feet wide, four foot tall and 37 feet long. Once construction starts the road will blocked and a detour will direct traffic to Route 4 and Park Avenue.

Consulting and engineering firm CHA of Albany has been awarded the job of designing all five of the projects. At the town Board presentation last week CHA project manager Tony Papile said during construction access to Main Street will be available but traffic will not be allowed to cross the tributary serviced by the culvert.

Because five projects are on the drawing board for the 2021 construction season Papile could not say how long the detour would be in use. He did say that all five projects are expected to be done between April and October of that year.

Halfmoon Highway Department Supervisor John Pingelski will be taking comments on the South Main Street project for the next two weeks.

The BRIDGE NY program is part of a $23.3 billion multi-year capital plan initiated by the Cuomo administration to upgrade critical roads, bridges and other vital transportation infrastructure across the state.

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