State gives OBPA $1.2 million toward new port access road
Tuesday, September 28, 2010 - 3:37 pm

OGDENSBURG – The state is giving $1.2 million to the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority’s $1.3 million project to build new access road that will enable the port to handle overweight and over-dimensional cargo, State Sen. Darrel Aubertine’s office has announced.

Another $2.7 million will be given to the New York & Ogdensburg Railway Co. to replace ties and rail from Lisbon to Norwood, and to begin the effort to rehabilitate bridges in Madrid and Norwood.

“This project will expand the capabilities of the port and strengthen our ability as a region to attract and retain jobs,” Aubertine said.

The senator says he worked directly with the Department of Transportation and the Governor’s office to stress the project’s potential for economic development and sustainability, key criteria in the selection of more than 30 projects across the state, including another in Oswego and two more in St. Lawrence County.

The Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority submitted a project funding application to the New York State Department of Transportation to build an access road to the Port of Ogdensburg, relieving heavy truck traffic from residential neighborhoods and allowing the port enhanced abilities to handle over-dimensional cargo.

This project is critical to the Port due to the upcoming rebuild of Paterson Street – the sole access route to the port, and upcoming over-dimensional projects at the port. Without this access, the Port of Ogdensburg will be effectively shut down, Aubertine;s office said.

The New York and Ogdensburg Railway, in conjunction with the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority, submitted for funding to rehabilitate the railway from milepost 11 to milepost 25. This funding will be used to improve safety at crossings and bridges, and to bring the main line up to limited 286,000 pound capacity. Recent derailment events have occurred between milepost 11 and milepost 25 creating unsafe conditions and delaying commerce at the Port of Ogdensburg. Approval of the application will substantially improve the reliability of the line.

Also in St. Lawrence County, the state will target $1 million to the Massena Terminal Railroad for a $1.25 million project to resurface eight rail crossings and rehabilitate three miles of track in St. Lawrence County in order to accommodate heavier rail cars; and another $318,600 to the Business Development Council of Greater Massena for a $354,000 project to construct a new rail siding to serve three lots in the Massena Industrial Development Park.