June 30, 2022
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Governor Kathy Hochul (D) announced in early December 2021 that her administration is providing $216.2 million in “enhanced assistance” to 88 local governments for the rehabilitation and replacement of bridges and culverts statewide.

[Above photo by the NYSDOT]

This funding – provided through the New York’s “BRIDGE NY” initiative, administered by the New York State Department of Transportation –  supports projects that reduce the risk of flooding, improve resiliency of structures, facilitate regional economic competitiveness and prioritize projects that benefit environmental justice communities.

Gov. Kathy Hochul

“The ‘BRIDGE NY’ program provides essential funding to enhance the safety, resiliency and reliability of critical municipally-owned infrastructure,” Gov. Hochul said in a statement. “We must continue to make these strategic investments in our local communities to protect our residents from the increased frequency of extreme weather events, as well as to provide New Yorkers with the modernized and streamlined infrastructure they deserve.”

That $216.2 million builds upon the nearly $500 million previously awarded to local governments under this initiative to enhance the quality of life for residents and businesses statewide. The governor’s office said it made those project awards based on a “competitive solicitation process” and supports all phases of project delivery, including design, right-of-way acquisition, and construction.

The criteria for projects to receive BRIDGE NY funding include the structural condition and susceptibility of the bridge or culvert to flooding and/or scour. Criteria also includes the significance of the bridge or culvert based on detour considerations and the number and types of businesses served; benefits of the corridor on Environmental Justice Communities; and the overall impact on the movement of commerce.

Marie Therese Dominguez

“Governor Hochul recognizes the importance of investing in [New York’s] communities and transportation infrastructure as being fundamental to our state’s longer-term environmental and economic sustainability,” noted Marie Therese Dominguez, NYSDOT commissioner. “This funding … is providing the support to make our local communities stronger, our infrastructure more resilient and our state more equipped to mitigate the impacts of climate change.”

“Since its inception, BRIDGE-NY has been a tremendous boost to county highway department efforts to maintain, rehabilitate, and enhance the resiliency of our vast systems of bridges and culverts,” added Joseph Wisinski, president of the New York State County Highway Superintendents Association.

“Local governments are responsible for the maintenance of 87 percent of the roads and over half the bridges in the state. BRIDGE-NY has enabled counties to address these critical infrastructure needs that otherwise would have to be delayed,” he pointed out. “By attending to the rehabilitation and reconstruction requirements of more bridges and culverts now, the work is less costly and at a significant savings for taxpayers.”

editor@aashto.org

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