I81 Syracuse

Scott Willis / WAER News

Businesses on I-81 just north of Syracuse and the county legislators that represent them are continuing to insist that a high-speed highway be maintained through the city.  They’re urging residents and others to speak out against the state’s recommendation last week of a community grid to replace the aging viaduct that cuts through downtown.


John Smith / WAER News

Leaders at Centerstate CEO say they prefer a community grid, plus recommendations to replace the I-81 viaduct. The board suggests ways to revitalize the city through strategies and metrics, address traffic flow and environmental improvement. This includes improvements to feeder sections of I-81 South into the city like the Bear Street corridor to enhance transportation infrastructure and connect with the Inner Harbor developments and surrounding area. Rob Simpson explains that plenty of creative thinking has to go into the plans for the best outcomes.

File photo

Suburbanites are stepping up to the challenge of getting more people engaged and open to a Community Grid option to replace the I-81 viaduct through Syracuse. Coran Klaver is the Founder of Syracuse Suburbs for the Grid and lives in DeWitt but, just on the outskirts of the city and nearby Syracuse University where she is a professor.

“The people who live in the cities and the suburbs we are all connected; we are not at odds with each other. We can’t help but be connected, and so let’s be responsible to one another,” Klaver said.  

Regional transportation officials fear the community will be polarized over what to do with the elevated portion of Interstate 81 through Syracuse.  Engineers just got the green light to spend the next few months conducting an environmental impact review of the various options, and narrow them down to one or two.