South Nyack Looks to Revitalize through New Plans for Exit 10

BY JANIE ROSMAN

SUP from NYSTA
Landscape architect Kathryn Wolf’s drawing of the proposed shared use path terminus, shown at March 20 meeting/ Credit Trowbridge Wolf Michaels, Landscape Architects

Next month, South Nyack residents will have their chance to see, and to comment on, suggestions for the development of the Exit 10 Interchange, including the new shared use path.

After the March 20 meeting, where residents blasted project officials, and called the state’s plans for the SUP landing “insensitive and destructive of South Nyack’s residential way of life,” the state changed direction.

It now supports relocating the path’s terminus to the Exit 10 Interchange. Village officials asked the South Nyack TZ Bridge Task Force — chaired by former Rockland County Legislature member Connie Coker, with village residents Richard Kohlhausen and Jerry Ilowite — to come up with new ideas.

Organized as a workshop, the mid-July meeting (no specific date has been set) will showcase all ideas submitted during the past months to special project advisor Brian Conybeare. Project team members are “currently working on a parking demand study to better estimate how many pedestrians and bicyclists will use the new bridge,” he said.

New submissions will be sent to the South Nyack Task Force or to South Nyack Mayor Bonnie Christian.

“Brian has been very accessible to us,” Coker said. “The mayor is very clear that she wants to have a meeting, and the public is eager to see and hear what the engineers have to say about the plans.”

Christian praised the task force’s efforts and said the village seeks to add two additional members; see notice on village website.

Initially, the SUP terminus was Smith Avenue, a tiny dead-end street off Piermont Avenue. A second plan, reflecting changes sought by the village, extended it to the intersection of South Broadway and Cornelison Avenue, with parking at the Village Hall site.

The Tarrytown landing would have roughly 135 parking spaces on weekends and holidays, and 30 spots otherwise since the Thruway Authority maintenance offices will use them. “We don’t have that in South Nyack,” Christian said. “Where are people going to park?”

That part of the Rockland trestle will remain as the Thruway Authority’s permanent maintenance dock is another concern.

“The bridge is a gateway to the county, and in the bigger scheme of things, it’s going to affect Rockland County,” Christian said, emphasizing her first allegiance, and that of the mayor and Board of Trustees, “is to protect the village of South Nyack.”

She recently spoke with state Senator David Carlucci about forming a committee of Rockland mayors to gauge its impact on the county when it opens in 2018.

A $250,000 study funded by the state will explore economic options for the 25-acre parcel for South Nyack’s development and cultural sustainability — and reclaim what was lost nearly 60 years ago, 100 homes and the commercial district, when the current bridge was built. A Request for Proposal will be sent to developers for bid after Trustees’ review and approval.