Long Island, NY - July 30, 2015 - Governor Cuomo announced completion of two projects worth $56.1 million to help transform State Route 347 on Long Island from a high-volume corridor into a safe, multi-modal, environmentally sustainable boulevard for motorists, pedestrians, bicyclists, and transit users. The improvements are part of a series of projects planned to enhance safety and reduce travel delays on the Route 347 corridor by transforming the busy road into a modified boulevard and suburban greenway for 15 miles through Smithtown, Islip and Brookhaven, in Suffolk County.
“The transformation of Route 347 will support businesses, improve safety and keep traffic moving for the hundreds of thousands of motorists who depend on this vital part of Long Island’s transportation system,” Governor Cuomo said. “I’m proud to see these projects completed as yet another example of New York investing in key infrastructure in every corner of this state.”
Paving for a $25.6 million project to reconstruct State Route 347 at its intersection with Route 112 in the town of Brookhaven, Suffolk County was completed July 29, with landscaping and finishing work scheduled for completion this fall. A separate $30.5 million project to reconstruct State Route 347 between State Route 111 and Mount Pleasant Road in the town of Smithtown, Suffolk County was completed earlier in July.
New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) Commissioner Matthew J. Driscoll said, “The shared-use path, new pedestrian signals and crosswalks and new bus shelter make this a truly multi-modal project that will increase safety for pedestrians and bicyclists and enhance connections for transit users, important goals for Governor Cuomo in all transportation projects. By making all these options available along the corridor, we are encouraging people to leave their cars at home, and -- with new solar and LED lighting and abundant tree planting -- we have transformed this section of Route 347 into an environmentally sustainable corridor.”
The $25.6 million Brookhaven project included construction of a third travel lane in each direction on Route 347 near the intersection with Route 112. In an effort to reduce crashes at the intersection, left turns are no longer allowed from Route 347 onto Route 112. The construction contractor for the project was Scalamandre and Sons, Inc. of Freeport, Nassau County.
The $30.5 million road reconstruction in Smithtown included construction of a third travel lane in each direction. Travel lanes were narrowed and the speed limit was lowered to 45 mph. The construction contractor for the project is Posillico Civil, Inc. of Farmingdale, Nassau County.
Both projects included building new bus shelters and installing new traffic signals and pedestrian signals, and adding high visibility crosswalks and pedestrian crossing countdown timers. An off-road shared-use path also was built at both locations. New landscaping and tree plantings along with solar and LED lighting beautify the areas and increase their environmental sustainability. New drainage will improve storm water runoff.
Congressman Lee Zeldin said, “This grant will go a long way in providing Suffolk County roads, like Route 347, which stretches across the towns of Smithtown and Brookhaven, with the funding necessary to make improvements to our community’s transportation safety, as well as strengthen our infrastructure and economy. As a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I strongly support improving our local roadways and I’m proud to partner with Governor Cuomo on this initiative to strengthen Long Island’s infrastructure.”
Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan said,“Route 347 is an essential traffic artery for everyone who lives and works in this region. These two infrastructure investments will improve the quality of life for current and future residents and also invigorate the local economy. The improvements already made to Route 347 have increased public safety for motorists, pedestrians and bicyclists and have enhanced the beauty along this major corridor. We look forward to the remaining projects ahead and eventual completion of this significant highway improvement project."
Assemblyman Michael J. Fitzpatrick said, "The project through the Smithtown Route 347 area has turned out better than expected. I have received many compliments from constituents as to how attractive the roadway is and how pedestrian it has become. The greenway concept is a welcomed innovation by the State DOT. Our roadways are looking better than they have in a long time.”
Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone said, "Rt 347 is a vital roadway that our residents and businesses rely on daily. I applaud the Governor for making the reconstruction of the road a priority and focusing on safety and reduction of traffic congestion that will benefit our entire community."
Smithtown Supervisor Patrick Vecchio said, “We applaud the governor’s initiative to continue the reconstruction of NYS Rt. 347. The already completed construction in Smithtown to C.R. 111 is efficient, safer and visually appealing. The new plan, continuing east, will do the same.”
Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine said, "The Route 347 corridor is one of the busiest in Brookhaven Town and has a long history of serious accidents, especially at the intersection of Route 112. The reconstruction of the intersection is a vast improvement for motorists and pedestrians alike, and I thank the Governor for his commitment to making our roads safer.”
Originally built in the 1950s as a farm delivery route, Route 347 grew along with the suburban development boom into a major east-west corridor. In 1969, an average of 48,000 vehicles per day used this roadway; today approximately 71,000 vehicles use the road each day. The planned vision for the entire Route 347 corridor includes the “Parks to Ports and Harbors” unifying theme to tie together many assets and local destinations, such as Blydenburgh County Park and the Port Jefferson Harbor.
A similar $26.7 million project to reconstruct the portion of Route 347 between Route 111 and Route 454 in Hauppauge was completed in 2013. Construction is ongoing on a $39.2 million project to address the portion of Route 347 between Mount Pleasant Road and Terry Road in Smithtown and is expected to be completed next year. A project to reconstruct the portion between Terry Road in Smithtown and Gibbs Pond Road in Nesconset, Suffolk County is being developed and the remaining sections will be addressed under multiple projects in future years.
For real-time travel information, motorists should call 511 or visit www.511NY.org, New York State’s official traffic and travel information source.
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