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Mayor In Westchester Calls For State Action On 'Dangerous, Outdated Roadway'

Photos of some of the damge to Route 9A in Northern Westchester.
Photos of some of the damge to Route 9A in Northern Westchester. Photo Credit: Briarcliff Manor Mayor Steve Vescio

A Northern Westchester mayor who is fed up with the dangerous conditions on major roadways is calling on the state for action.

In a letter to state transportation officials, Briarcliff Manor Mayor Steve Vescio once again presses state Department of Transportation officials to address the serious and ongoing safety issues on the heavily trafficked and outmoded Route 9A in as it winds through Briarcliff and Ossining. 

In the letter, Vescio points to two recent major accidents that could easily have resulted in multiple fatalities and renewed his call for immediate repairs to the damaged median barrier and guardrails along the 4-lane highway which opened in 1932.

Vescio has been writing and in communication with transportation officials for two years in an effort to have the repairs completed, especially at the narrow and low-clearance Pleasantville Road underpass, the single most dangerous and outmoded obstacle on the four-mile stretch of 9A, he said.

In return letters to Vescio, Lance MacMillan, regional director for NYSDOT said:  "NYSDOT continues to be committed to the maintenance of the Route 9A corridor and to monitor and conduct maintenance as needed. As we have done in the past, NYSDOT maintenance forces will be performing guide rail and pothole repairs, and litter pick-up this spring. The work will be conducted on a weekend day to minimize the impact to the traveling public. NYSDOT will notify the village once work is scheduled."

The state's reply letter was dated Wednesday, April 6, and since that time nothing has been done. 

A second letter dated Thursday, April 7 from the regional director echoed the first letter, but still, nothing has been done, Vescio says.

"The lack of timely maintenance of critical safety features on this roadway by NYS DOT is completely unacceptable and poses an unnecessary safety hazard to the traveling public," Vescio said in his letter. "We request that NYS DOT immediately repair this section of damaged guide rail as well as the several others that have remained damaged and unrepaired for excessive periods of time on Route 9A through Briarcliff and Ossining."

Heather Pillsworth, a spokeswoman for the department, told Daily Voice on Friday, Aug. 19, that the DOT would investigate the situation and have a response on Monday, Aug. 22. 

This is a developing story. Check back to the Daily Voice for updates. 

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