Governor Cuomo Announces $5 Million in Funding to Support New Pedestrian and Bicycle Path on Manhattan’s West Side
New York (STL.News) Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that $5 million in funding has been awarded to Hudson River Park Trust for construction of a new pedestrian and bicycle path along Route 9A from West 57th Street to West 59th in Manhattan, enhancing safety and access while contributing to the creation of a seamless link in the Empire State Trail between Pier 97 and Riverside Park. The new section of the path will be built on piles over the Hudson River.
“In line with the ambitious goals we have set for a greener, cleaner future, we are investing in sustainable infrastructure to support economic growth and encourage the use emissions-free transportation options,” Governor Cuomo said. “The pedestrian and bicycle access improvements along the busy Route 9A corridor will make commutes and recreation more enjoyable for both the local community and thousands of visitors.”
The project is funded from the federal Transportation Alternatives Program, administered by the New York State Department of Transportation, which supports the construction of new, multi-use bicycle and pedestrian facilities, new Americans with Disabilities Act accessible sidewalks, improved access to public transportation and enhanced roadway safety. The project was selected through a competitive solicitation process.
The new path project will construct a full-width pedestrian pathway and improve the Route 9A bikeway and related buffer lanes between West 57th Street and West 59th, where the Hudson River Greenway connects to Hudson River Park and Riverside Park South. The new section of path, which will be compliant with the ADA, will facilitate the transition of these three park entities to the recently completed Empire State Trail. It also will help provide access to public ferry services in Midtown Manhattan and enhance access to Lincoln Center, Carnegie Hall, Columbus Circle and other cultural venues and tourist attractions. The pedestrian and bikeway improvements will provide an alternative transportation option to commuters and visitors to the Hudson River Park and surrounding areas, while significantly enhancing safety by reducing the potential for conflicts between cyclists and pedestrians. The new pathway will provide critical square footage enabling separate pedestrian and bicycle use. The width of the new path will vary from the existing 14 feet to 40 feet in some sections.
New York State Department of Transportation Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez said, “Under Governor Cuomo’s leadership, New York State is building a national model of smart, innovative transportation infrastructure that is climate-friendly and works for all users of the road. This project exemplifies how our vast transportation sector is playing a key role in enhancing the health and quality of life of New Yorkers while reducing air pollution and congestion for New York City residents.”
Hudson River Park Board Chair and Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “During the State’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, more New Yorkers than ever before have been looking for opportunities to get outside and enjoy nature. This new pedestrian and bicycle path will improve access to the Hudson River Park for communities on Manhattan’s West Side and create a new link to the Empire State Trail. Today’s announcement is a significant milestone in the State’s sustained commitment to improving the city’s parks and access to the outdoors statewide.”
Senator Tim Kenendy, Chair of the Senate Transportation Committee, said, “As New York continues to invest in our infrastructure, it is key that we’re simultaneously prioritizing pedestrian and cyclist safety. This funding commitment will build upon a vision to create a greener, more sustainable New York, and will ultimately strengthen the mobility and convenient access of all roadway users.”
Assemblyman William Magnarelli, Chair of the Assembly Transportation Committee, said, “As chair of the Assembly’s Transportation committee, we endeavor to incorporate pedestrian and bicycle paths into as many DOT projects as possible. This is a win for our communities. As the State focuses on safely enhancing non-motorized transportation opportunities, we will see benefits environmentally, as well as socially for those that use these paths in our communities.”
Construction of this new pedestrian and bicycle path along Route 9A supports Governor Cuomo’s initiative to advance Health Across all Policies in New York State as well as the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. Health Across all Policies is a collaborative approach that integrates health considerations into policymaking across all sectors to improve community health and wellness. The nation-leading Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act empowers every New Yorker to fight climate change at home, at work, and in their communities. The Act builds on almost a decade of climate leadership by Governor Cuomo. Based on the latest climate science, the Act’s targets are among the most rigorous of any major economy in the world. Every New Yorker will play a key role in protecting our communities and ensuring a sustainable future.