The New York State Department of Transportation (NYS DOT) is now three weeks into a $787,000 pavement rehabilitation project. The construction focuses on a 1.7 mile stretch of Route 12B, extending from Kinney Drugs at 103 Utica Street to the Village of Hamilton boundary line south of Colgate University on Broad Street, according to the NYS DOT website and Village of Hamilton Administrative Assistant Nancy Mitchell.
The construction began September 9 and is intended to reach completion on October 1, with a full end to construction expected on October 31.
Mitchell discusses the planning and communication between NYS DOT and the Village of Hamilton.
“12B through the Village is a State-owned road. NYS is responsible for it’s maintenance and repairs. While the Village Mayor and Administration has been kept informed of the planning process, the Village has nothing to do with the actual work. The Village has been in communication with the NYS DOT for almost a year,” Mitchell said.
Mitchell went on to confirm that the Village of Hamilton is in constant contact with NYS DOT regarding construction updates, and that issues regarding scheduling changes are communicated with Colgate University via email.
According to the NYS DOT webpage devoted to the rehabilitation project, the construction is currently on time and on budget. The construction received both federal and state funding.
Neither the Village of Hamilton nor the Town of Hamilton were required to fund the project. The rehabilitation is part of the Statewide Tranportation Improvement Program (STIP) for New York, a federal program requiring individual states to create transportation developments spanning at least four years.
The pavement rehabilitation for Route 12B involves a complete re-pavement of the targeted stretch of road, along with a number of other improvements to road and sidewalk infrastructure.
“The State did some repairs and updates to the storm sewer catch basins and will also be updating the sidewalk approaches at the curb lines that are impacted along the route in order to meet current ADA standards,” Mitchell said, regarding the extent of the construction work.
The Rome Sentinel also reported that Route 12B is undergoing sidewalk excavation, structure work, milling and, specifically at the intersection of College Street and Route 12B the relocation of activities.
The portion of Route 12B that constitutes Broad Street acts as the main concourse through Hamilton and provides access to the Colgate campus and the majority of its facilities. The construction has required the redirecting of traffic and lane closures in certain areas, slowing the flow of traffic through Hamilton.
Senior Kate Bundy expressed her frustrations regarding the construction.
“[The construction] is very necessary, but the worst timing possible,” Bundy said, referencing scheduling conflicts with both Family Weekend and Homecoming Weekend. Both weekends bring in large convoys of extra cars and traffic to attend Colgate-sponsored festivities and sporting events.
Route 12B is a historic route connecting Oneida and Chenango Counties, running north-south through Madison County.