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Traffic Snarls In Briarcliff After 9A Closure

BRIARCLIFF MANOR, N.Y. – What is usually a quiet village road snarled up with bumper-to-bumper traffic on Wednesday morning after part of Route 9A closed for maintenance.

State Department of Transportation officials cancelled maintenance work that had been planned for Thursday due to what happened with traffic on Wednesday.

"People said it took them two hours to get from Elmsford to here," said John Chambal, owner of Good Food restaurant on Pleasantville Road, where traffic backed up.

Gino Cebel, the manager of a Getty gas station across the road, concurred.

"Now it's running. This morning it was like jammed," Cebel said at around 12:30 p.m. "People were complaining it took them like 20 minutes to come into town and it's supposed to be two minutes."

Route 9A was closed between Ryder Road and Route 117 between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m., state DOT officials said.

"The work will not be resumed tomorrow as originally planned until we develop more effective traffic management plans with police and local officials," said state DOT spokeswoman Melissa Slater.

Slater said she is still doing research into why traffic backed up so badly on Wednesday.

Chambal said he thought part of the reason for the traffic was that trucks that usually are not allowed to make a left hand turn off 9A were being forced to go that way, and since there was not enough room to make the turn, that slowed up traffic.

"We don't have trucks coming here, just UPS and some delivery trucks and that's it. To see these big rigs coming through town is really something," said Donald Borho, owner of Wondrous Things lifestyle store, as a 16-wheeler rumbled down Pleasantville Road.

Borho said it took him half an hour longer to get to his store than it usually does because of traffic on Pleasantville Road.

"We never ever have this," he said. "Usually at this time of day people are having lunch and traffic dies down. To have this kind of traffic this time of day is unseen before."

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