FEMA grants $8M to rebuild northern Westchester bridge

By Leif Skodnick

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A bridge carrying the Saw Mill River Parkway over the Kisco River will be rebuilt with an $8,680,000 grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

The bridge, which links the Westchester County towns of New Castle and Mount Kisco, will be removed and replaced with funds from the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program awarded by the FEMA Sandy Recovery Office to the state Department of Transportation. The office of U.S. Rep. Nita Lowey, D-Harrison, announced the award Monday.

“Upgrades to critical pieces of infrastructure are paramount to ensure that our roads, bridges and main thruways are safe and resilient during severe weather events,” Lowey said in a press release announcing the grant. “I’m pleased New Castle will receive these federal funds that I fought for in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy. I will continue to work with communities in the Lower Hudson Valley to ensure that their infrastructure needs are met.”

According to the press release, the bridge is vulnerable to floods, is in a deteriorated condition and has a history of scour problems, where rushing water erodes the ground under the bridge’s foundation, contributing to the possibility of bridge foundation failure. The composite steel girder bridge will be replaced with a new structure on the existing horizontal alignment and an elevated profile more resilient to extreme weather events, Lowey’s office said.

“It is important that FEMA addresses our failing infrastructure due to recent storms, including Sandy,” said Jill Simon Shapiro, New Castle town administrator. “We are still feeling the aftermath. Because of the ravages of the storm water, the bridge foundations are failing. It looks fine, but the structural integrity has been compromised. It is important this is addressed now before it has a chance to fail.”

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About the author

Leif Skodnick
Leif Skodnick is a former reporter for Westfair Communications. He is a graduate of Columbia Journalism School, Mississippi College School of Law, and St. Lawrence University.
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