Skip to main content

Erie Blvd. in Schenectady, NY to get visual makeover

In a recent article of the Albany Times-Union, there was a story that plans for a visual makeover of Erie Blvd. in Schenectady were announced. The changes would take place on Erie Blvd. from I-890 and the entrance to General Electric to Union St.

Currently six lanes wide until State St., Erie Blvd. would be reduced to four lanes from 890 to State St. Erie Blvd. is quite possibly the most historic thoroughfare in Schenectady. Once, the Erie Canal flowed along its alignment. Later, after the canal was filled in, Erie Blvd. was the gateway to the city's largest employer, General Electric.

The changes - besides reducing the lanes - would include a roundabout at South Ferry St., pedestrian crosswalks, a landscaped median, and street lighting. The goal is to make one of the city's busiest highway's more visually appealing.

Construction would start in 2009 and last through 2011.

An idea of what Erie Blvd could look like. (Clough Harbour and Associates/Albany Times-Union

Here's a few shots of Erie Blvd. that Doug took today:

This is the beginning of Erie Blvd. - and the start of the proposed project - at I-890 and General Electric. Doug is traveling North on Erie Blvd. throughout.


The next two photos are on Erie Blvd. at South Ferry Blvd. This is where the proposed roundabout would go. The roundabout would allow traffic to reverse direction on Erie Blvd. A maneuver that is considerably dangerous today.



Erie Blvd. at State Street (NY 5). This intersection is rather congested during afternoon and evening rush hours. This is also where most of the major changes to Erie Blvd. will end.


Finally, beyond State St. to Union, possible improvement include a small median. As you can see, the road is much narrower here than it is at I-890.


Story: Erie Boulevard makeover unveiled ---Albany Times-Union

Commentary:
From August through December of 2006, Erie Boulevard was part of my commute to work. We moved our office to Erie Blvd. from Rotterdam that August. I will say that the makeover would make Erie Boulevard a more visually appealing drive.

However, sticking points at I-890 and State Street will continue. The roundabout at South Ferry St. will certainly allow for safer traffic movements. The roundabout along with other changes to Erie Boulevard will slow down traffic and make the road more pedestrian friendly. But will this encourage business along the corridor? Who knows, there are a few businesses and some fast food spots from 890 to State St. But overall, there's a lot more that will be needed along Erie Boulevard for it and Schenectady to be as active as it once was over 30 years ago.

The makeover is a great thing and a good start. But there's a lot more needed and hopefully will be done to breathe life into a stagnant city.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Ghost Town Tuesday; Vineland, Florida; the town killed by Disney

Vineland is a small ghost town located in southwest Orange County, Florida near the junction of Florida State Road 535 and Interstate 4.  Vineland is somewhat unique due to it largely being squeezed out of existence by Lake Buena Vista which is the company town where Disney World is located. Vineland was founded in the late 1800s as Englewood.  The town name of Englewood changed to Orange Center in 1911 before finally assuming the name Vineland in 1924.  Much like the rest of Orange County the community of Vineland was centered around Citrus Grove.  In the case of Vineland said orange groves were centered around Ruby Lake. The end of Vineland came as the Disney Corporation began purchasing parcels of citrus grove land to build Lake Buena Vista.  Vineland fell into a sharp decline in the 1960s but the community managed to continue to exist to modern times.  Much of the street grid of Vineland still exists east of FL 535 but most of the original structures are either gone or falle

Old NY 10 and Goodman Mountain in the Adirondacks

  Old highway alignments come in all shapes and sizes, as well as taking some different forms after their lifespan of serving cars and trucks has ended. In the case of an old alignment of what was NY 10 south of Tupper Lake, New York, part of the old road was turned into part of a hiking trail to go up Goodman Mountain. At one time, the road passed by Goodman Mountain to the east, or Litchfield Mountain as it was known at the time. As the years passed, sometime around 1960, the part of NY 10 north of Speculator became part of NY 30, and remains that way today from Speculator, past Indian Lake and Tupper Lake and up to the Canadian Border. At one time, the highway was realigned to pass the Goodman Mountain to the west, leaving this stretch of road to be mostly forgotten and to be reclaimed by nature. During the summer of 2014, a 1.6 mile long hiking trail was approved the Adirondack Park Agency to be constructed to the summit of the 2,176 foot high Goodman Mountain. For the first 0.9 mi

Oregon State Highway 58

  Also known as the Willamette Highway No. 18, the route of Oregon State Highway 58 (OR 58) stretches some 86 miles between US 97 north of Chemult and I-5 just outside of Eugene, Oregon. A main route between the Willamette Valley region of Oregon with Central Oregon and Crater Lake National Park, the highway follows the Middle Fork Willamette River and Salt Creek for much of its route as it makes its way to and across the Cascades, cresting at 5,138 feet above sea level at Willamette Pass. That is a gain of over 4,500 in elevation from where the highway begins at I-5. The upper reaches of OR 58 are dominated by the principal pinnacle that can sometimes be seen from the highway, Diamond Peak, and three nearby lakes, Crescent, Odell and Waldo (Oregon's second largest lake). OR 58 is chock full of rivers, creeks, mountain views, hot springs and waterfalls within a short distance from the highway. OR 58 was numbered as such by the Oregon State Highway Department in 1940. OR 58 is a del