STATE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION ANNOUNCES START OF PROJECT TO REHABILITATE ICONIC BRIDGE OVER ERIE CANAL IN BROCKPORT

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STATE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION ANNOUNCES START OF PROJECT
TO REHABILITATE ICONIC BRIDGE OVER ERIE CANAL IN BROCKPORT
Rehabilitation of State Route 19 Bridge Builds on New York’s Investments Along
Historic Erie Canal
Investment Complements “Finger Lakes Forward” – The Region’s Comprehensive
Strategy to Revitalize Communities and Grow the Economy

May 10, 2023 (Brockport, NY) – New York State Department of Transportation
Commissioner Marie Therese Dominguez today announced that work is slated to begin
Monday, May 15 on a project to rehabilitate the State Route 19 lift bridge over the
historic Erie Canal in the Village of Brockport, Monroe County. The project will replace
the bridge deck and make other improvements to enhance safety and improve travel
over this iconic structure, which was originally built in 1915 and provides important
access to Brockport’s vibrant downtown corridor as well as the nearby SUNY Brockport
campus. State Route 19 is also a key conduit for the region’s many agricultural
products. The work is expected to extend the bridge’s service life by approximately 30
years.
“The historic Erie Canal is a historical treasure that exemplifies the perseverance and
ingenuity of New Yorkers and the Department of Transportation is committed to helping
the communities along the canal remain vibrant and prosperous,” said Commissioner
Dominguez. “The rehabilitation of the State Route 19 bridge will help protect a vital
travel route for the flow of people and goods in the region while also preserving the
historic charm that has made Brockport a hub for tourism.”
New York State Canal Corporation Director Brian U. Stratton said, “The Village of
Brockport’s Main Street Lift Bridge has been a vital crossing over the Erie Canal for
more than 100 years, and by investing in this rehabilitation project, Governor Hochul
and our colleagues at the state Department of Transportation are ensuring that this
historic structure will continue to serve the community for decades to come. As we
prepare for the Erie Canal’s third century of operation, strategic investments into long
existing infrastructure like the lift bridge and new amenities like the Brockport pedestrian
bridge reinforce the Canal’s role as an economic engine for the villages, towns, and
cities that grew along it.”
Work on the bridge is part of a larger $28.3 million project that also includes the
rehabilitation of the State Route 98 Bridge over the Erie Canal in the Village of Albion,
Orleans County, which began in November 2022. The project builds on NYSDOT’s prior
success in modernizing and preserving the iconic structures along the canal, which
includes a recently completed, $16.9 million project that rehabilitated similar bridges in
the Villages of Fairport and Spencerport.
The State Route 19 steel truss bridge serves as an important component to the historic
Erie Canal, which is a registered National Historic Landmark. As part of the canal, the
bridge benefits from historical protections that ensure the bridge continues to look as it
did early in the 20th century with its trusses and lift towers preserved. This project will
extend the bridge’s service life and better support motorists for a 21st century economy
by:
• Replacing bridge decks and portions of the truss system with high-strength,
galvanized steel.
• Modernizing mechanical and electrical components within the bridge’s lifting
system.
• Rehabilitating the bridge towers.
• Installing new bridge rails.
• Implementing pedestrian enhancements near the bridge, including new signage,
pavement markings and a realigned canal path on the bridge’s north end to
improve visibility for both pedestrians and motorists.
• Repainting the bridge, maintaining its current shade of green.
During construction, the bridge will be dismantled with individual trusses lifted and
placed in a lot nearby the canal, where the rehabilitation work will occur. When work is
complete, the trusses will be moved back into place over the canal. Due to the nature of
this work, the roadway will be closed to motorists and pedestrians for roughly 18
months. A signed detour will be in place utilizing State Route 31/Redman Road, State
Route 31/4th Section Road/ West Avenue. The Erie Canal Trailway will remain open for
the duration of the project.
Congressman Joe Morelle said, “As we work to strengthen our local infrastructure, it
is critical to prioritize projects that support and enhance our local economy. Repairing
this historic lift bridge will improve travel into both Brockport’s downtown area and the
SUNY campus. I’m grateful to Commissioner Dominguez for recognizing the need to
help strengthen our aging infrastructure and look forward to our continued work
promoting community revitalization and regional economic growth.”
Senator Robert Ortt said, “By rehabilitating the State Route 19 lift bridge, our state is
committing to the safety of motorists who utilize this bridge daily and maintaining the
cultural significance these canal bridges represent in our area. Improvements to this
historic bridge will ensure that residents and visitors to our community will continue to
have the unique experience of traversing a piece of New York State history while
shopping and dining in Brockport’s picturesque downtown corridor. I commend the
Department of Transportation for addressing the necessary improvements to this bridge
so that it can continue to be a key fixture in our community for decades to come.”
Assemblyman Steve Hawley said, “I’m so thrilled to hear that the Brockport Bridge
over the Erie Canal is finally receiving the support it deserves for a full repair and
revitalization. This is the kind of investment that is critical to our communities, and the
work done now will ensure the bridge stands for generations to come. I want to thank
the state Department of Transportation for their commitment to our local infrastructure,
and wish the construction crew well as they begin the restoration process.”
Monroe County Exec Adam Bello said, “The historic Main Street bridge over the Erie
Canal in Brockport is a vital link for our community and the region. This restoration will
greatly improve the safety and reliability of the lift bridge and ensure that residents,
SUNY students, visitors and businesses can continue to access and enjoy all the village
has to offer. I applaud the state’s investment in this project and look forward to its
completion.”
Village of Brockport Mayor Margay Blackman said, “‘Bridging Brockport,’ a
community committee, has been working towards this moment for two years, meeting
with Spencerport, Fairport and Albion and planning events to attract visitors and
residents to our downtown. We’ve studied the flow of traffic through the village and
across our other two canal bridges and attended to cyclist and pedestrian traffic. No
doubt the inconvenience and glitches these next 18 months will create, but this is also
an educational moment for all. We have a web page devoted to the bridge closure
(https://brockportny.org/bridge/) that will provide updates and will host the live feed from
a webcam on the project. We’re ready and looking forward to a new bridge in 18
months.”
Accelerating Finger Lakes Forward
Today’s announcement complements “Finger Lakes Forward,” the region’s
comprehensive strategy to generate robust economic growth and community
development. The regionally designed plan focuses on investing in key industries
including photonics, agriculture and food production, and advanced manufacturing.