Demand is driving the expected expansion of the commuter lot at Exit 14 of the New York State Thruway. The Rockland County Legislature will vote Tuesday on going out for bids to increase commuter parking in Nanuet along Route 59. The number of available spaces would increase from 704, which includes handicapped spots, to a total of 774.
“(It’s a) very, very popular lot,” said County Transportation Commissioner Thomas Vanderbeek. “There’s a multitude of services that leave that area.”
Vanderbeek said the different transit vendors have improved their service, which led to more commuters taking the buses. At one point, the lot was filled to over capacity so one of the bus routes was relocated to the Smith Street Parking Lot to alleviate the overcrowding.
He expressed confidence that the 70-space expansion into what is now a tandem trailer parking area would be quickly used.
“We’re extending 50, 60 feet into it,” said Vanderbeek. “We do know when we build more spaces they fill.”
The commuter parking area consists of three separate lots, which are owned by the New York State Department of Transportation and maintained by the Town of Clarkstown. The New York State Thruway owns the tandem trailer section. The county will not be charged for use of the new area. No permits are required for commuters to park.
The county’s Department of Public Transportation submitted the proposal for the estimated $400,000 expansion, which would not require the expenditure of any county tax money. The project would be 100 percent reimbursed with 80 percent coming from the Federal Highway Administration (FHA) and 20 percent provided by the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT). MJ Engineering of Clifton Park, NJ already prepared the plans and specifications. Their fee was funded in 2012 and also covered by the FHA and state DOT.
Vanderbeek said they hope for a tentative start date of late spring for the month long project which will include relocating electrical utilities, paving and striping.
Red & Tan Lines, Coach USA, TZX, TOR, OWL and Spring Valley Jitney serve the three lots on the north and south sides of Route 59 with destinations of mass transit hubs in Manhattan and Westchester County along with Nyack, Spring Valley and Suffern.
Another project included on the legislature’s agenda going for bid is the replacement of the Waldron Terrace Bridge, which was washed away by Hurricane Irene in 2011. The county highway department estimated the replacement cost at $750,000, of that 75 percent of the construction and inspection costs would be covered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The proposed new span at 58 feet would be longer than the previous bridge, which was 47 feet. Plans call for the use of precast concrete beams and concrete abutments supported by driven steel piles for stability and strength.
Extension of the agreement with Scenic Development LLC to house the horses in the Sheriff’s Mounted Unit will be the subject of a vote. The one-year lease renewal for 2013 will cost up to $216,000. The 22-acre site off Route 202 in Suffern includes a barn, corrals, an office trailer, house trailer and two cargo trailers. The Mounted Unit consists of six horses and seven officers, assigned to patrol county parks and county operating centers and provide crowd control, traffic direction and search and rescue services.