Town hall meeting in Nyack for Tappan Zee Bridge

The Tappan Zee Bridge photographed on the north The Tappan Zee Bridge photographed on the north side during a tour provided by the New York Thruway Authority. (March 13, 2012) Photo Credit: Rory Glaeseman

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A town hall meeting took place Thursday night in Upper Nyack to discuss the new Tappan Zee Bridge project.

The gathering, organized by state Assemblywoman Ellen Jaffee (D-Suffern), will include officials from the New York State Thruway and state Department of Transportion, the two state agencies overseeing the project. State Sen. David Carlucci (D-Rockland/Orange) also attended the event, which included a panel discussion and questions from the audience.

Property owners who will be affected most by noise from construction of a new $5.2 billion bridge project have been casting ballots through the mail for the past several weeks on a proposal to install noise barriers for each side of the Hudson River in Tarrytown and South Nyack. Thursday is the deadline for submitting postmarked ballots to the state, but residents have asked for an extension, which is reportedly under consideration.

A total of 161 homeowners from both Rockland and Westchester counties will be voting, with more than half the votes coming from The Quay, a Tarrytown condominium development. The proposed noise barriers would run from the bridge entryways onto the bridge.

Construction costs for those permanent noise barriers, which can run from 10 to 24 feet high, are in the range of $1 million per mile. The size, colors and textures for the walls would be determined during future voting by the homeowners.

Last month, the state was passed over for a $2 billion federal loan it sought to pay for a portion of the project, but it's on a short list to receive money through a second round of funding expected to be released later this year. Gov. Andrew Cuomo has made the high-profile bridge project a priority for his administration.

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