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Seward Propels Budget Funding to Reopen Worcester I-88 Rest Stop

Written By Editor on 3/31/14 | 3/31/14

ALBANY, 03/30/14 -- State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I – Oneonta) today announced that the agreed upon 2014-15 state budget includes, at his insistence, funding to reopen the NYSDOT rest area along I-88 eastbound between exits 18 and 19 in Worcester.

“I denounced the NYSDOT decision to close this rest area four years ago, and have been working ever since to reverse this affront to public safety,” said Senator Seward.  “Finally, we will be able to tear down the barricades and reopen this service facility, critical to the motoring public.”

In 2010, the New York State Department of Transportation closed six rest areas on interstate highways in what was touted as a temporary measure.  To date, none have reopened.

“When the closures were first announced, I voiced my concern, particularly for the safety of truck drivers who make their living and support their families traveling our highways.  Since that time a host of accidents involving tractor trailers, including one with a fatality, have occurred near the Worcester rest stop.  No doubt some of these crashes could have been avoided if a safe haven was open,”Seward added.

Senator Seward also advocated for budget funds to reopen the I-88 Wells Bridge rest stop (westbound between exits 11 and 12) which was also closed in 2010.

“While the Wells Bridge rest stop was not specifically funded in this state budget agreement, I will continue to advocate for its reopening as well.  In this day and age, when so much attention is focused on ‘texting zones’ and similar measures, we need to enhance highway safety not reduce it,” Seward added.

NYSDOT personnel have  already started to coordinate plans to refurbish and prepare the Worcester rest area for public use.  A formal opening date will be announced shortly.
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