Seward Reopens I-88 Rest Area At Wells Bridge
ONEONTA – State Sen. Jim Seward, R-Milford, who last year obtained funding to reopen the I-88 rest area at Worcester, has now obtained funding to reopen the one at Wells Bridge, between I-88’s exists 11 and 12.
“Five years ago when the NYSDOT decided to close several rest areas, I fought the plan over a concern for public safety,” Seward said in an announcement issued today. “Last year I was able to include funding in the state budget to reopen the I-88 rest stop near Worcester and now the reopening of Wells Bridge has been green-lit as well.”
In 2010, the state Department of Transportation closed six rest areas on interstate highways in what was touted as a temporary measure. To date, only the Worcester rest stop has reopened due to Senator Seward’s advocacy.
“When the closures were first announced, I voiced my concern, particularly for the safety of truck drivers who make their living and support their families traveling our highways. Providing easily accessible rest areas for drivers who are on the road for long periods of time helps cut down on accidents and makes traveling safer for everyone. Further, the sight of chained off rest areas with grass growing through the pavement emits an uninviting aura of decline and decay which is completely opposite from the impression we want to present to those traveling to our region,” Seward added.
The Worcester rest area reopened for parking only at the end of 2014 with renovation work continuing on the restrooms. NYSDOT personnel have already started to coordinate plans to refurbish and prepare the Wells Bridge rest area for public use.
“In this day and age, when so much attention is focused on ‘texting zones’ and similar measures, we need to enhance highway safety not reduce it. We also need to make sure that commuters who travel for work and tourists who are on their way to our region all reach their destinations safely – reopening these rest areas will help,” Seward concluded.