Story by Katie Bisaro
The Village of Warwick Board of Trustees held their regular monthly meeting on Mon., Oct. 17.
Village residents will notice a change in the way Jones Chemical trucks make their way through the Village to make their deliveries in the near future as the bridge on Howe St. is taken out and replaced.
Fran Sinclair, who lives at the corner of Oakland Ave. and Campbell Rd. in the Village, asked the Village Board of Trustees to clarify information she had been hearing regarding Jones Chemical trucks using Campbell Rd. to get to Rte. 94. (Oakland Ave.)
Mayor Michael Newhard explained that discussions have been going on since spring with the Orange County Dept. of Public Works regarding the plan to replace the bridge on Howe St. The bridge is owned by the County.
The Howe St. bridge has been deteriorating over the years and was “red flagged” years ago by the County Dept. of Transportation.
“A red flag is a very significant thing,” stated Newhard who he went on to explain that it was slated to be torn down altogether and not replaced.
As a result, traffic would have been diverted permanently onto Orchard St. and Hamilton Ave. The Village did not want to lose the bridge and asked for other options.
According to Newhard, they were able to “win some time” because the length between the Jones Chemical tankers’ axles was great enough that both axles were not on the bridge simultaneously.
The new County administration has since looked at the project and purchased property next to the bridge, allowing for the bridge to be replaced.
In the meantime, a temporary detour would be needed while the bridge is being rebuilt. Orchard St. is not a viable alternative for the detour as it is so narrow and the turn onto or off of Oakland Ave. is too tight for the tankers.
The first step is to build a road that will connect River Rd. to Orchard St. From there, tankers will be routed down Hamilton Ave. to Campbell Rd.
Sinclair and another Campbell Rd. resident expressed their concern not only about the tankers coming through that neighborhood and right by the Warwick Valley Community Center on Hamilton Ave., but that the “detour” will become a permanent route.
Newhard reported that, once the bridge is completed, the temporary road will be gated off for emergency access only and the tankers will resume their previous route along Howe St. through the Village.
Newhard also credited Jones Chemical for its “impeccable record for safety” and noted that the Village would be in contact with the company throughout the process, but acknowledged “this [project] will have its challenges.” The entire project should take less than a year to complete.
Mayor Newhard assured residents that the Village will keep citizens informed as the project progresses.
To read the full coverage of the Village Board meeting pick up a copy of the Oct. 26 issue of the Warwick Valley Dispatch. The Dispatch is available on newsstands at the following locations: Florida – Quick Chek, Kwik Mart, Florida Bakery & Deli, Michael’s Wall of Discounts; Greenwood Lake – Kwik Mart, Cumberland Farms; and Warwick – Edenville Deli, CJ’s Country Market, Quaker Creek Store, Akin’s Pharmacy, Henry’s Deli, Kwik Mart, Larry’s Deli, Price Chopper, ShopRite, and Sunoco.
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