Wednesday, May 14, 2008

TZ BRIDGE GUEST COMMMENTARY

THE CONCERNED CITIZEN
Volume 2 Issue 3 May, 2008
CONCERNED CITIZENS FOR RESPONSIBLE DEVELOPMENT

It seems that the Department of Transportation has buried its head in the ground instead of burying our traffic (via a tunnel) in the ground.
Thus far there has been no credible explanation as to why a tunnel option has been eliminated as an alternative to replacing the Tappan Zee Bridge. Even the concept of a supplemental tunnel to compliment a refurbished bridge has been left out of the process. This tunnel could remove trucks and mass transport from the bridge greatly reducing wear and tear on the bridge thereby extending its lifespan and lowering annual maintenance cost. It also offers the best opportunity to remove highly toxic truck fumes from the air. A tunnel could give us quicker construction time and consequently, a less expensive and a more readily achievable project. It could be major step in mitigating our poor air quality rating and reducing noise pollution.
Following is a summary of the reasons given by the D.O.T. for eliminating any tunnel consideration:
D.O.T. 1. “Interchanges 9, 10, & 11 will be bypassed resulting in the need for back tracking.”
Facts: With a tunnel dedicated to trucks and trains and a refurbished bridge for cars, there would be no need for any changes to the above interchanges.
D.O.T. 2. “A tunnel would require long and steeper grades that exceed recommended highway standards.”
Facts: Grade requirements can be met with the building of a 7-mile long tunnel which will still offer a competitive cost advantage to a new, much larger bridge.
D.O.T. 3. “A tunnel would require relocation of the toll plaza to Rockland.”
Facts: The Tarrytown toll plaza would stay intact for cars with a supplemental tunnel. A truck toll can be built at one end of the tunnel.
D.O.T. 4. “Property acquisition.”
Facts: Premature argument since there is no bridge design with realistic foundations. It is highly unlikely that a tunnel would require more land taking.
D.O.T. 5. “A tunnel would require several large vertical shafts, some in the river.”
Facts: Tunnel technology has advanced a great deal and now does not require large, unsightly construction shafts
.D.O.T. 6. “Extraction, handling and disposal of more than 8 million cubic yards of soil, some of which would be contaminated.”
Facts: The excavated soil from a bored tunnel is often a valuable bi-product which can be sold to developers, thus defraying part of the costs. There is no expectation that soil from below the river bottom will be found to be contaminated.
D.O.T. 7. “Duration of construction (of a tunnel) that would be expected to be 2 to 3 years longer than a new bridge, even with work progressing on multiple tunnel tubes.”
Facts: New machinery for drilling tunnels is spectacularly fast. Modern tunnel technology would allow for a bored tunnel to be built faster and more quietly than a new bridge. Furthermore, this statement is premature since there is no bridge design available for comparison.
D.O.T. 8. “Disturbance of the river bottom at the rock/soil access shafts on both shores to an extent greater than for a bridge (up to 50 acres of underwater habitat could be affected).”
Facts: Premature argument to use for discarding tunnels without knowing basic bridge designs and foundations. There is a strong argument that a bored tunnel beneath the river bottom would have little effect on underwater habitat.
D.O.T. 9. “Displacement of 25 acres of wetlands in the Talleyrand Swamp in Westchester County.”
Facts: Depends on routing of tunnel and exit points.
D.O.T. 10. “Visual impacts of ventilation buildings, which would be large, conspicuous structures.”
Facts: See item 5 above. Again, no comparison can be made without knowing basic bridge designs and foundations.
D.O.T. 11. “Capital costs for the highway tunnel crossing would be 2 to 3 times that of a new bridge.”
Facts: It should be noted that tunnel construction, world wide, has been coming in at one quarter to one third less than bridges. Once again, without knowing basic bridge designs and foundations, this argument is without validity.
So why won’t the D.O.T. let the tunnel alternative have its day in court during the Environmental Impact Studies? It’s a question that cries out for an honest answer.
If you agree, please ask our governor, congressional representatives, county officials and the D.O.T. this question.
George Sherman, President, Rockland Branch,
Sherwood Chorost, President, Westchester Branch
E-mail: CCRDrockwest@aol.com
“Never doubt that a small group of committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has.” Margaret Mead

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

To bad that the planning of the TZ bridge did not include Greenburgh.
Our board took it for granted that they would be included in the plans BUT guess whaqt they got screwed.
Well town board how does it feel to be screed.
You have been doing this to us the taxpayers for some time
As the saying goes what goes arround comes arround.
All the monies that was spent for different studies all went to the wayside,because they told you one story and they did another.
Tell me town board how does that feel.
You have been doing this to us for sometime taking our money spending it wit.out the proper accountablity,

hal samis said...

Dear Mssrs. Sherman and Chorost:

Hold on and keep your powder dry.
Help is on the way.
When the Greenburgh Comprehensive Plan is approved sometime in 2010, this $400,000 study will provide all the answers -- to everything.
After all, it's called a Comprehensive Plan.

And since Mr. Sheehan & Co. have gathered input from all residents of unincorporated, whatever conclusions that are published must be the right ones.

If you are really concerned, just alert the Governor that our CP is on the way and that he should prevent the Department of Transportation from taking any further action until the State is in receipt of the Greenburgh CP.

Meanwhile, places like Nyack will want to provide their own input into the making of the CP because when Greenburgh talks, all of Westchester, Rockland and Smith Barney listen.

hold on gov said...

and bear stearns too!

hold on gov said...

and bear stearns too!

Anonymous said...

Greenburgh talks and the neighbors laugh.
What a poor excuse for politicians.
People are starting to feel sorry for us because there is a no win situation in living in Greenburgh.
The only good thing is the sales tax are a bit lower.
They cannot even be on top of what is happening to the north of town.
They have had the attitude that everyone should bow down to them.
This TZ project is a slap in their face because they cannot be trusted with their decisions.
They have poor managerial skills but don't tell them because each one on the board thinks that they are the best.

Anonymous said...

To bad that no one in town government was on top of the planning for the TZ bridge.
Again you were all caught sleeping......because you never read the blog through and through where some people tell you what is going on.

I would like to ask you Paul and your board how does it feel to have someone lie to you.

Anonymous said...

The Town Board has been on top of the TZ bridge. NY State officials have spoken at Town Board meetings, answerinq questions from Tarrytown & Irvington community members.

Anonymous said...

If the town board was on top of the TZbridge project why is it that gentleman I think his name is Murray told them what was going on .
The town board did not report the findings to the public.
We have to thank that gentleman and not the town who showed us that the money spent on all different studies went to the wayside.
He did make good suggestions so let's see if the town takes them serious.