New York governor unveils South Bronx
highway rebuilding plan
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[March 20, 2017]
By Ian Simpson
(Reuters) - New York Democratic Governor
Andrew Cuomo on Sunday unveiled a $1.8 billion highway reconstruction
plan in New York City's South Bronx aimed at benefiting one of the
world's biggest food markets and an area once seen as a symbol of urban
It was the latest public works plan announced by Cuomo at a time when
such projects are increasingly on the national agenda. Republican
President Donald Trump has vowed to spend $1 trillion on infrastructure,
which the American Society of Civil Engineers has given a near-failing
Cuomo's highway project in the Bronx, the poorest of New York's five
boroughs, would rebuild the Bruckner-Sheridan highway interchange to
allow the area's largely black and Hispanic residents easier access to
parkland and the Bronx River on the other side, Cuomo said.
The plan also calls for new highway ramps to give vehicles direct access
to the Hunts Point Market, one of the biggest food distribution sites in
the world. Residents have long complained of respiratory problems from
the 13,000 trucks daily that spew exhaust as they rumble through local
"The best future for the Bronx is ahead and we're going to lead a Bronx
that is better than any Bronx that has ever been," Cuomo said in
announcing the project.
The project is expected to generate 4,250 jobs and will be completed in
multiple phases, he said. Cuomo has earmarked the $700 million needed
for the first stage in this year’s state budget, which is expected to be
voted on April 1.
Cuomo's emphasis on public works projects includes a stage of New York's
Second Avenue Subway, renovation of LaGuardia Airport and replacement of
the Tappan Zee Bridge across the Hudson River.
[to top of second column]
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announces a $1.8 billion project to
transform the South Bronx by reconstruction of the Bruckner-Sheridan
Interchange in New York City, United States in this March 19, 2017
handout photo. Kevin P. Coughlin/Office of Governor Andrew M.
Cuomo/Handout via REUTERS
Hank Sheinkopf, a Democratic Party strategist, said in a telephone
interview that the South Bronx project would boost Cuomo at the local,
state and national levels. The second-term governor faces re-election in
2018 and has been floated as a potential presidential candidate in 2020.
"It makes him the guy people have to pay attention to nationally on
urban issues," Sheinkopf said of Cuomo, son of former New York Governor
New stores and housing have helped the South Bronx recover somewhat from
its reputation in the 1970s for crime and urban decay. In its annual "52
Places to Go" travel list last month, the New York Times listed the area
(Reporting by Ian Simpson; Editing by Peter Cooney)
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