Work begins on $8.85M expansion of Route 825 on Griffiss Park

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With a contract awarded, preliminary work has begun on the $8.85 million project to make Route 825 four lanes wide its entire length through Griffiss business park.

Third and final phase

It is anticipated motorists will be traveling on the new alignment by fall 2017, reports James Piccola, spokesman in the state Department of Transportation’s Utica office. Utility relocation has already begun.

Contractor is CCI Companies is expected to have crews on-site within the next three weeks, according to the DOT official.

The third and final phase will continue the four-lane highway from the Ellsworth Road roundabout to the intersection with Perimeter Road near the Mohawk Glen medical office building and the DeLutis Field complex.The distance is about a mile. No traffic light is planned at the intersection with Perimeter Road nor will the nearby B-52 display be affected.

Project highlights

Here’s a look at major components of the project that is expected to finished by fall 2018:

-- Two intersections will be reconstructed with roundabouts, creating a total of three roundabouts on the road. The first replaces a four-way intersection controlled by a traffic light at Route 825, Floyd Avenue and Brooks Road. The second one replaces a Y-type stop sign intersection with Hangar Road. Traffic now backs up at both of these intersections at peak travel times.

-- The railroad crossing near Ellsworth Road will be replaced.

-- There will a new sidewalk on the north side of the road and a new 10-foot paved multiuse trail on the south. The trail will connect to the existing Griffiss Business and Technology Park trail system and the Mohawk River Trail.

-- The parking lot at the Mohawk River trailhead will be reconstructed and paved.

-- The truck apron of the existing Ellsworth roundabout will be reconstructed and the center island re-landscaped.

It all started in 2000

The idea to make the main thoroughfare through the business park four lanes between Black River Boulevard and Route 49 was approved in 2000.

The first construction followed in 2001. This phase reconstructed the southeastern end of Route 825 and included the existing roundabout at the intersection with Ellsworth and Geiger roads.

The next round came In 2004. It reconstructed the northeastern end of Route 825 between Perimeter Road and Chestnut Street. This work included a new bridge over the Mohawk River.

Then, with the middle section of Route 825 left undone, the project was shelved because of a lack funds.

“But, Oneida County, Mohawk Valley EDGE, the Griffiss Local Development Corp., and the Region (DOT office) continued to promote the project and look for opportunities to complete it,” said Piccola. “With their efforts, we were able to get the last phase funded and designed.”

GLDC paid Barton & Loguidce for the design work for this final phase some years ago when it looked like there might be federal dollars to construct the additional lanes if there were existing shovel-ready plans. No federal money ever came through, and the project remained on hold.

Fast forward to April 2015 when the state budget allocated $10 million for the completion of Route 825. GLDC then paid the engineering firm to update the plans in consultation with the state DOT in hopes of hurrying the final construction along.

Bids were sought this summer, and now the contractor is getting ready to start work.

“The county, Mohawk Valley EDGE and GLDC were key partners in all phases of the project,” said Piccola. “Without them, this project would not have come to fruition.”

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