Latest design plans for I-81 project to be released

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SYRACUSE, N.Y. (WSYR-TV) — The long-awaited design plan for the $2 billion Interstate 81 Viaduct Project will be released Friday by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA).

The Town of Salina is among the recipients of the document for eventual public review.

A state memo included with the documents says the release Friday triggers the public comment period which is expected to last until September 14. Two years ago, the state released its preliminary plans for the aging highway.  It calls for tearing down the elevated portion through the city and replacing it with a community grid of Syracuse streets.

Salina Town Supervisor Colleen Gunnip said in a statement to NewsChannel 9: 

“Hopefully, New York State officials will finally begin to listen to the concerns of all constituents through this period of public comment and adopt changes into a new project proposal that works for all stakeholders.”

Salina Town Supervisor Colleen Gunnip

The FHWA says “written comments by letter or written comment form provided at in-person meetings or downloaded from the project website, electronic comment form via the project website, and emails” will be accepted.

Comments can be submitted by U.S. mail to 

Mark Frechett, P.E.
New York State Department of Transportation, Region 3
333 East Washington Street
Syracuse, N.Y. 13202

Or 

Rick Marquis
Federal Highway Administration
11A Clinton Avenue, Suite 719
Albany, N.Y. 12207

Or by email at i81opportunities@dot.ny.gov

Oral comments can also be heard at project public meetings in front of an audience, in-person or virtually. To call in comments, call the project’s toll-free hotline 1-855-I81-TALK (855-481-8255) Commenters over the phone will be asked to take three or fewer minutes. 

All comments must be in by September 14. 2021 at 5 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. For more information, visit the project website.

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