BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — THE YEARS LONG CONTROVERSY ABOUT THE SCAJAQUADA EXPRESSWAY IN BUFFALO CONTINUES.
Community groups presented their own plans for what should happen to the expressway Wednesday.
These plans come about 3 months after the New York State Department of Transportation presented its designs to turn the urban expressway into an urban boulevard.
“Restoring the park, reuniting the park, reconnecting the park to its communities,” said Brian Dold with the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy.
That’s the goal for Brian Dold and the Buffalo Olmsted Parks Conservancy. It’s part of their save Delaware Park campaign. But he says DOT’s plans for the Scajaquada expressway won’t do that.
“We don’t think they’ve fulfilled the governor’s promise of a transformational project and we don’t think the work is done so we need to get them back to the table,” said Dold.
This is the re-design of the 198 or Scajaquada expressway DOT presented to the public back in August. The plan is for it to stay 30 miles per hour, have several intersections and a pathway for pedestrians and cyclists.
“I’m in favor of a more pedestrian friendly area. The ‘S’ curves have always been a nightmare but the stone bridge originally a pedestrian bridge, that’s still a viable idea,” said Dan Berarducci.
this is what community groups say they want to see happen to Scajaquada expressway.
Several people met Wednesday night to hear community group’s plans.
“A park appropriate road. That means that a road that goes through a park that doesn’t impact the park user experience,” said Dold.
Now Dold says they’re even calling on Governor Cuomo for help in hopes of bringing DOT back to the table. But according to DOT’s website, the Scajaquada project is already moving forward. Construction is scheduled to start in the summer.
But some people say they will continue to fight for what they say is best for the community.
“The DOT works for us, the citizens and we’re asking for something different,” said Lynn Siradas, who lives near the 198.
This project is expected to cost more than 70 million dollars according to DOT’s website.
Construction is scheduled to start next summer. Community leaders say they’re not giving up. There is a rally planned for November 18th.