Parkway is a great resource but it needs more maintenance

Posted 11 November 2013 at 12:00 am


The Lake Ontario State Parkway is a resource that we should not let go to waste as we have been for the last several years. While it never achieved its original goal of spanning from Rochester to Niagara Falls, it does serve residents of northern Orleans, Niagara and Monroe counties as a reliable and hassle-free alternative when traveling into and around Rochester.

Commuters of this road enjoy particularly beautiful scenery, low traffic volume and travel uninterrupted by control devices (no stop signs or traffic lights). It is truly one of the few roads in WNY where you can set the cruise control and ride for nearly 40 miles.  Yet many do not choose this route. It is ill-maintained, rough-riding and now plagued by failing bridges causing detours.

DOT’s own statistics justified their seasonal closure of the Lakeside Beach portion of the Parkway. I suspect that it is also their own statistics which account for why monies are not being allocated to repair the road surface and spans. Paving completed this fall is a wonderful step in the right direction but seems senseless as it dead ends into a portion of road which has been completely closed due to the Hamlin Beach span.

Is there any timetable or plan for the reopening of the Hamlin Beach span? Can it be safely reduced to one lane like the Point Breeze span has been? Can monies spent mowing be reallocated to road surface repair?

Without an aggressive management and maintenance plan the volume on the Parkway will continue to dwindle until it is no longer feasible to maintain it at all. Or is that, in fact, the plan?

Robert Shaw