NEW ROCHELLE, N.Y. - New Rochelle has received more than $3.5 million to make improvements on Quaker Ridge Road that will allow for increased roadway safety and additional access for cyclists and pedestrians.
This week, it was announced that New Rochelle has been named a recipient of a $3,518,638 grant from the New York State for Quaker Ridge Road “Complete Streets” improvements from New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo.
"Among New Rochelle residents, especially residents of the North End, Quaker Ridge Road is well-known as a highway to nowhere," Mayor Bramson stated. "It's absurdly excessive traffic capacity practically compels drivers to speed, while its measly and poorly engineered sidewalks give short shrift to pedestrians."
New Rochelle’s grant was part of nearly $115 million in awards for 81 projects across the state that will include multi-use bicycle and pedestrian facilities, new accessible sidewalks that are accessible, improved access to public transportation and enhanced safety measures.
"This funding is critical to enhancing our infrastructure and paving the way for both pedestrian and bicycle travel," Cuomo said in a statement. "By improving roadway safety and increasing access to healthy transportation alternatives, we are providing both residents and visitors a chance to experience the state's natural beauty like never before, while supporting a cleaner, greener New York for generations to come.”
"A better design would calm traffic, improve safety, and permit residents to walk or bike to schools, shops and houses of worship," Bramson added. "That's been the city's goal for many years, and in fact, Quaker Ridge Road is part of the Complete Streets initiative encompassed in our newly-adopted capital budget, but the hefty price tag of reworking such a large roadway - repaving alone will run in the millions - has perpetually pushed the project off into the middle-distance."
New Rochelle was selected through a “competitive solicitation process” and the grant was the highest allotted for a municipality in the Hudson Valley.
“Thanks to the infusion of this much-needed investment, Quaker Ridge Road, an important arterial road in New Rochelle's North End, will not only be safer and more efficient but will be more accessible to pedestrians, joggers and cyclists,” District 5 Councilmember Barry Fertel added. “We've waited a long time, but it was worth the wait.”
Bramson cautioned that while the grant will go a long way toward making improvements on Quaker Ridge Road, there are still several steps that need to be taken and discussions to be had before New Rochelle will notice any demonstratable difference in the North End.
"There's still lots of design work that needs to be completed, and the city will seek ample public input prior to implementing changes," he said. "This is a heavily-used roadway, and we've only got this one chance to get it right.
"So it's not going to happen tomorrow, but for the first time, I can confidently say that it is going to happen. And that's great news for our community."