TARRYTOWN, N.Y. Residents of the Quay Condominiums are looking for fair treatment from the state when it comes to the construction of a new Tappan Zee Bridge.
More than 100 residents and local politicians gathered in the complex's community room Thursday night to air their concerns to state officials and propose mitigation efforts for the bridge's construction. Noise from the bridge's traffic could be heard throughout the meeting because the room's windows were opened.
We are in the eye of the storm, board President Alice Goldberg said, noting the residents wanted to work with state officials to find solutions for their concerns but would proceed with legal action to stop the project if something wasn't done.
The 89 residences in the Quay sit north of the bridge landing along the Hudson River, and the homes facing the river have a close view of the existing bridge. Proposed plans for the new bridge would move it further north by approximately 300 feet, taking a tiny sliver of land from the complex that's not being used.
Residents are proposing six mitigation measures they say are reasonable for the proposed five-year project that will take place in their backyard: an ongoing process for construction-related issues, replacing windows and doors for those on the west and south end who will be most impacted by the construction, building noise barriers on the west and south end as well as adding additional noise barriers during heavy noise-generating activities, curtailing noise activities to the period between 8 a.m. and 6 p.m., and compensating owners who want to move out of the complex.
State officials had differing reactions to the proposals. Department of Transportation Project Director Michael Anderson told members of the crowd when he spoke that he didn't agree with any of their proposals, although he understood their concerns and wanted to sit down at the table to find solutions.
Theodore Nadratowski of the New York State Thruway Authority said he believed the state should be good neighbors and that they would be bringing back the proposals and working on them.
We do hear you and we're ready to act, he said.
Residents in particular are concerned about their financial situation, Goldberg said, noting that our homes are for most of us the most significant asset we have. Goldberg and others added that no one would want to move into a home facing five years of construction-related issues and that those who do sell their homes do so at a major loss.
Harriet Koretsky told state officials that she would not let her grandson visit her during the construction for fear of his safety.
Mayor Drew Fixell argued in a letter that the state had a moral obligation to provide some sort of compensation for homeowners looking to move out of their homes because the owners didn't buy their homes expecting the bridge to be moved closer to their doors. Fixell was unable to attend the meeting in person.
The terrible truth is that this situation isn't anything but unconventional, he wrote.
Other politicians also expressed their support for the Quay complex and Tarrytown residents throughout the village who will have to deal with the construction.
Build a bridge, don't destroy a community, State Sen. Andrea Stewart-Cousins (D-Yonkers) said.
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