Chemung County revamps pedestrian safety

Local News

Chemung County pedestrians can thank state taxpayers for some improvements being made over the next few years.

The Highway Safety Improvement Plan will be funding the $985,000 project through the Pedestrian Safety Action Plan. 

“To me, this is just one step closer to that vision zero, towards zero deaths, there’s no amount of deaths on our highways that are acceptable,” Andrew Avery, Commissioner of the Chemung County Department of Public Works, said. “These are the kinds of projects that can, over time, bring that number closer to zero.”

A total of 58 crossings and intersections will see safety enhancements including crossing signs, street markings and traffic signals. 

“The walking areas aren’t very pedestrian-friendly as far as crossing the streets and stuff, so it would be nice to see some improvement in that area as far as a business owner and a resident,” Justina Lisi, Horseheads resident, said.

“It’s bad enough being in a crash when you’re protected by a car, it’s even worse when you’re a pedestrian,” Avery said. “You know, you get above 25 to 30 miles an hour and it’s a much higher likelihood of being killed in that crash.”

Locations for the project have already been identified in the city of Elmira, town of Big Flats and village of Horseheads. As of now, the design package is underway. 

The funds will be allocated to designs, approvals and construction, which is targeted to begin in 2021.

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