Rt. 209 bridge south of Kingston to be closed this summer

(Will Dendis)

Ever use Route 209 to head south from Kingston? Think again this summer, when, according to Hurley supervisor John Perry, the state Department of Transportation is planning to replace a bridge over the Lower Esopus Creek between the NYS Troopers Barracks and O&W Rail Trail parking lot a year early. That means detours from “roughly June through August,” with the impact of truck traffic hopefully lessened somewhat by getting GPS and other mapping systems changed before construction starts.

The main detour route that Perry said he’s been speaking with DOT officials and police about would take traffic down Wynkoop Road to Hurley Mountain Road, if headed north on 209, or along Hurley Mountain from Route 28 at Kenco’s to Wynkoop if headed south. Talk of adding traffic lights to aid with traffic flow has been under discussion, the supervisor added.

The NYS Department of Transportation website posts a daily average of 13,029 vehicles along the stretch of 209 to be detoured. Perry said he’s asked the DOT and county to ensure that the 2014 bridge crossing the Esopus in Hurley, along Wynkoop Road, be checked for maximum load carriage, as well as any dangerous areas along Hurley Mountain Road.

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The supervisor also said all efforts would be made to keep truck and other through-detour traffic off of Hurley’s historic Main Street, where many in town fear increased traffic will damage the area’s collection of old stone houses.

“There’s nothing really positive about this,” Perry said. “I guess once it’s done it won’t be happening again in our lifetimes.”

He added that local events along Main Street will still be on for the busy summer season ahead, including Old Stone House Day, when all traffic will be closed from the historic area.

Everyone agreed it will be a long summer.

There are 4 comments

  1. Paul Chauvet

    I think the difference in New Paltz is that the detour would have been significantly longer (south to 44/55 in Gardiner, or north to River Road or Tillson Road in Rosendale). Without the bridge, the delay would have been 30-45 minutes (with added traffic on those routes). That was also a longer replacement time, around six months I believe.

    When the 213 bridge in High Falls was replaced, we didn’t have any temporary bridge either – and I would have loved one for getting over to 209 without having to use Cottekill Road, but that was again, only a five minute or so delay for the alternate routes.

  2. Kingston Is Awesome

    I hope someone from the DOT READS THIS — 209 is already two-lane graded at the bridge crossing — this was at one time to be the start of the 4-lane portion of the hightway, and was abandoned but is still 100% graded use-ready for something like a temporary bridge to be erected directly adjacent to the old bridge.

    Yes, the Northern Terminus Parking of the rail trail would need to be temporarily closed to accomodate a
    temporary truss bridge, but it would re-open as soon as the new work is complete.

    The elimination of lengthy detours through two communities that simply can not handle that amount of daily traffic, and heavy truck traffic, far outweighs the temporary closure of ONE Parking Lot.

    The at road-level two-lane grading that already exists runs right up the both the North and South stream banks, and could very quickly, and easily be fitted with abutments and the exact same type of truss bridge that was used in New Paltz. We all saw how quickly that project was completed and with very, very, very minimal distruption.

    Having several thousand vehicles per day + hundreds of heavy trucks rumbling through the awkward turns and hills up and through Hurley would be a nightmare. And diverting that same level of traffic onto Hurley Mountain Road and then the heavy traffic, poor visibility, turns on and off of Rt 28 at Hurley Mountain Road is a traffic accident waiting to happen, not to mention the degredation of the waterfall parking area, trash, and the poorly designed at-grade railbed crossing…a truck will get stuck.

    Both detours – as proposed – are poorly conceived, badly planned, and do not take seriously the negatives they will create.

    The answer already exists, is already in place, now just set that temporary truss bridge on it and get the work done!!!

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