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Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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   Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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   Author  Topic: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY  (Read 2805 times)
thebigham
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #40 on: Mar 27th, 2015, 8:35pm »
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Tree cutting is done on the east bank and west the west bank in Letchworth St Park.
 
The road underneath the bridge has been reopened.
 
Get your pics now before the road permanently closes for bridge construction!


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George_Harris
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #41 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 12:34pm »
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on Mar 22nd, 2015, 7:36am, HwyHaulier wrote:       (Click here for original message)
Let's suppose your correspondent went wandering at site. Noted presence of an extended family of blue speckled frogs, which an 'endangered species'? The ethical question? Would it be on one to have a duty to 'turn them in' to the Law?

Alas, you have just described the quandary that occurs when a farmer sees some critter that he had not seen before along one of his fields.  In the past if he had curiosity there would be a tendency to watch it and see what happens, maybe discuss it with a neighbor.  Now, much as he might like to do that since the EPA does not seem to understand the concept of "no taking without compensation" self preservation says use the "three S" method:  Shoot, shovel, and shut up, because if the word that there is some strange critter out there got to the wrong ears he may find himself shut out of his own land.


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HwyHaulier
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Posts: 3433
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #42 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 3:21pm »
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George - Lodge Members -  
 
Many Thanks for this does of day to day reality.
 
Let's say your writer has "...a friend..." with house on a 'city lot' in heritage farm community County. The problem here being,  
even with a fairly small lot, seasonal rains accumulate and hold in the back end. Is this, by current fad defintion therefore a  
'protected wetland'? Don't know much of nothin' about any of it, of course...
 
Used to be, local neighbor with a backyard pool. The migrating Canadian Geese became to have it imprinted in their embedded  
GPS it was a friendly stop, and... Else, the Geese flying Fort Myers, FL and back, dependent on time of year...
 
...........................Vern........................


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Ticket Agent serving...Pacific Stage Lines...Washington State System...Mt. Hood Stages...Pickwick Stages...Transcontinental & Western Air Lines.... Admitted Gold Bug..... Observant Orthodox Mossback..... H.M.R.A.O. Curmudgeons......
thebigham
Historian
Posts: 1158
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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« Reply #43 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 5:23pm »
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Tree cutting is done at Letchworth and the road under the bridge has reopened.
 
It will close in June for construction to begin so get your pics soon.


http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/Infrastructure/100_2359.jpg
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thebigham
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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« Reply #44 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 5:25pm »
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The east bank

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/Infrastructure/100_2354.jpg
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thebigham
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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« Reply #45 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 5:26pm »
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The aproximate location of the new bridge

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thebigham
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Posts: 1158
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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« Reply #46 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 5:28pm »
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Trees that were on the right are gone

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thebigham
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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« Reply #47 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 5:29pm »
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West bank

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/Infrastructure/100_2363.jpg
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thebigham
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Posts: 1158
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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« Reply #48 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 5:31pm »
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The east bank with the trees that used to be on the left are now gone

http://Forums.Railfan.net/Images/Infrastructure/100_2360.jpg
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George_Harris
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #49 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 7:41pm »
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To thebigham:
 
Just to say a thank you very much for your pictures of the current situation at the bridge.  Looks like you have had a recent snow up there?  These are some of the clearest views of the bridge I have seen.


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thebigham
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Posts: 1158
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #50 on: Mar 28th, 2015, 7:47pm »
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We had an inch of snow this morning.
 
It was 18 degrees with a windchill when I was at the bridge.
 
We still have winter here. UGH


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George_Harris
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #51 on: Apr 7th, 2015, 4:44pm »
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If the same restrictions apply in upstate New York, maybe this thread explains why the trees are being cut before the construction contract is even awarded.
 
http://forums.railfan.net/forums.cgi?board=NJT;action=display;num=1259348932
 
Quoting from the last post in that thread, "Federal regulations say the woodlands can't be cleared after April 1 because two species of bats are known to roost in trees and they are coming out of hibernation now. The species, Indiana and long-eared brown bats, are on the federal protected species list and their habitat can't be disturbed until Nov. 15."


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thebigham
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Posts: 1158
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #52 on: Jun 15th, 2015, 1:03pm »
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Ken Wallace posted this on Facebook on June 11:
 
This morning the bridge construction companies that were prequalified to bid on the Bridge Project showed up first at the East side and then arrived at the Trestle Parking lot. 15 companies were selected from the pool of prospective builders and these companies arrived today for a meeting at the Glen Iris and then went to the job site. It will still be a while before the Portageville entrance will be closed as this now will be in the bidding process and then a contractor will eventually be selected to perform the work


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George_Harris
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #53 on: Jun 15th, 2015, 1:46pm »
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Finall things are beginning to move.  In addition to the site visit listed, this has happened:
Quote:
PRUDENT ENGINEERING WINS PORTAGEVILLE BRIDGE CONSTRUCTION INSPECTION CONTRACT
06.05.2015

A couple of points of interest in the company's announcement in their description of their responsibilities which are much the usual for their type of work is:
Quote:
Due to the height of the bridge, early phases of construction may require Prudent’s industrial rope-access technicians to perform inspection work on an as-needed basis.


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George_Harris
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #54 on: Jul 17th, 2015, 5:19pm »
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And my monthly check in on what is happening.  Beyond the tree cutting that appears to have been done outside the state's contracting for this job, NOTHING.  The NY DOT web site still says contract to be awarde in the spring of 2015, but nothing to indicate that it actually has been.  This despite an article in RT&S  
http://www.rtands.com/index.php/track-structure/bridge-retaining-walls/new-york-gets-federal-approval-for-new-portageville-bridge.html
saying that Federal approvals have been given.
 
The article contains such statements as:
Quote:
The Federal Highway Administration has issued a Record of Decision for design and construction of the new bridge, which spans between Portage in Livingston County and Genesee Falls in Wyoming County.

and a statement by Gov. Coumo
Quote:
By receiving the federal government's approval, we can now move forward with this new project, which will replace the existing bridge and better incorporate it into the beautiful surroundings of Letchworth State Park. I am pleased that we have reached this stage in the project and I look forward to seeing construction begin in 2015.

and
Quote:
The Final Environmental Impact Statement was issued on December 16, 2014

 
This Final EIS would what have been necessary to allow the tree cutting to happen, but now what/when?


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thebigham
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Posts: 1158
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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« Reply #55 on: Oct 4th, 2015, 9:41pm »
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Pics from Augustl 2015
 
Cleared west side


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« Last Edit: Oct 4th, 2015, 9:43pm by thebigham » Logged
thebigham
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Posts: 1158
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
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« Reply #56 on: Oct 4th, 2015, 9:45pm »
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Waiting for Nickel Plate #765 to appear before crossing the Letchworth High Bridge at Letchworth St Park
 
The trees on this side of the bridge have been cleared for construction of a new bridge.
 
Photographed by Chris Bigham, August 2, 2015.


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« Last Edit: Nov 6th, 2015, 8:56pm by thebigham » Logged
thebigham
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Posts: 1158
Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #57 on: Oct 28th, 2015, 9:57pm »
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http://www.nscorp.com/content/nscorp/en/news/-norfolk-southernandnewyorkstatebeginreplacementofkeyportagevill.html
 
Norfolk Southern and New York State begin replacement of key Portageville rail bridge in support of Southern Tier economy
Castile, N.Y. - Oct 28, 2015
 
Supporting jobs and the economy of New York’s Southern Tier, Norfolk Southern, the New York State Department of Transportation, and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation, alongside numerous other supporters, broke ground today on a new $70 million steel arch railroad bridge in Letchworth State Park.
 
The new single-track bridge – expected to take about three years to construct – will be 900 feet long and located about 75 feet south of the current iron truss bridge, which spans the Genesee River Gorge. NS also will construct 1,200 feet of new track on either side of the gorge to align existing tracks with the new bridge.
 
“This successful public-private partnership underscores the strong confidence we all have in the ongoing potential of the Southern Tier,” said James A. Squires, Norfolk Southern chairman, president and CEO. “Norfolk Southern has a robust bridge program, and the new Portageville Bridge will be a testament to today’s expert engineers and the craftsmanship of today’s railroaders. We expect this project will start a new rail legacy for Letchworth State Park and the Southern Tier.”
 
When completed, the new bridge will be the linchpin of a vibrant Norfolk Southern rail line that helps businesses in Buffalo and the Southern Tier regions connect with markets east and west. Among the New York-based entities to benefit from the new bridge will be 10 short line railroads that serve local businesses and connect them to the Norfolk Southern network.
 
“This project is critical to the economy of the Southern Tier,” said New York State Sen. Patrick Gallivan. “The current bridge has served the region well for 140 years, but it must be replaced with a modern span that can meet the transportation needs of the 21st century. In addition to the construction jobs this project will create, the bridge will serve and support businesses throughout the region for years to come.”  
 
The budget for the bridge project includes $3 million in design costs and $2.5 million in construction costs from the New York Department of Transportation; a $2 million grant from the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council; and a $10 million grant from the U.S. Federal Highway Administration. Norfolk Southern will contribute the balance. Construction is expected to begin by the end of 2015.
 
“Maintaining a safe, modern freight rail network throughout New York State is critical to supporting business and generating economic activity,” said Matthew J. Driscoll, New York State Department of Transportation commissioner. “The new Portageville Bridge will be a beautiful and more efficient addition to Letchworth State Park and is one more example of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s commitment to New York State’s rail network.”
 
“The Portageville Bridge project is a great example of building better infrastructure through partnerships between governments at the local, state, and federal level and the private sector,” said Michael Canavan, FHWA New York Division chief operating officer. “FHWA is proud to be a part of it.  New York now has a bridge across the Genesee River that will move long distance freight more efficiently by rail while protecting the beautiful Letchworth State Park for the good of residents, neighbors, and visitors.”
 
The Erie Railroad built the current wrought-iron bridge in 1875, and while it has served several railroad owners from the Erie Lackawanna Railroad to Conrail, its current condition can no longer efficiently handle modern-day freight rail transportation. Currently, Norfolk Southern must slow freight trains crossing the bridge to 10 mph, and freight car weights must be reduced 13,000 pounds below the industry standard.
 
“Our customers look to Norfolk Southern for a 21st century transportation option that’s safe, reliable, and efficient,” said Jim Carter, Norfolk Southern chief engineer bridge and structures. “The way we meet this demand is to have a dependable infrastructure. We look to this new Portageville Bridge as a critical part of the Southern Tier’s success story.”
 
“The replacement Portageville Bridge will continue to complement the natural beauty of Letchworth State Park, while removing a longtime transportation bottleneck,” said Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council co-chairs, University of Rochester President Joel Seligman and Wegmans Food Markets CEO Danny Wegman.  “Breaking ground on this project underscores the importance of private and state partners collaborating to accommodate the freight rail transportation that is so critical to our region’s economic viability. We are pleased that the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council is supporting this major infrastructure project.”
 
The current bridge will remain open during construction of the new arch bridge and then be dismantled. During construction, the Portage entrance to Letchworth State Park will be closed to vehicular traffic. The nearby Castile entrance has been enhanced and will accommodate additional vehicular traffic. Additionally, the Mary Jemison, Finger Lakes and Gorge trails, and the Highbridge parking lot will be closed during construction.
 
State Parks Commissioner Rose Harvey said, “State Parks congratulates our partners at DOT and Norfolk Southern on the start of this important economic development project. The new bridge was thoughtfully designed to frame the view of the magnificent gorge for all who visit the nation’s favorite state park.”


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thebigham
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #58 on: Dec 12th, 2015, 11:57am »
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The Portageville entrance and the road under the railroad bridge will closed on December 17. Dynamiting to start immediately for the new bridge. Expected to reopen in 2018...

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George_Harris
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Re: Portageville High Bridge-Replacement? Letchworth Park, NY
 
« Reply #59 on: Dec 12th, 2015, 2:19pm »
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on Dec 12th, 2015, 11:57am, thebigham wrote:       (Click here for original message)
The Portageville entrance and the road under the railroad bridge will closed on December 17. Dynamiting to start immediately for the new bridge. Expected to reopen in 2018...

Glad to have someone in the area keeping up with what is going on.


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