Monday, September 01, 2014

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The Berkshires

Northville receives grant to help with safety hazard

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Albany/HV: Northville receives grant to help with safety hazard
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It's a safety hazard officials in Northville have been trying to eliminate for more than a decade. A narrow bridge, highly congested with people driving and walking, but no sidewalk. Now, the Fulton County village has received a state grant, and as YNN Maria Valvanis explains, the money could mean the difference between life and death.

NORTHVILLE, N.Y. -- "I walk there every other day or so, it's pretty tight, you've got to watch what you're doing, keep your eyes on traffic, and make sure they see you," said Matthew Ginter, who is a Northville resident.

There haven't been any accidents yet on the narrow bridge connecting downtown with people who live on the outskirts, and village officials want to keep it that way.

"We need a bridge across here, a small bridge a walkway, then we'll try and go along the bank on the other side, along the top to widen it. We've been working on it for probably ten years," said Mayor James Groff.

And finally, some fruition. A $75,000 matching-grant to conduct a study determining how feasible it would be to build a sidewalk along the spillway.

"I'm very excited, we need it. My kids are grown now but we've lived here since 1998, and when they were little they'd ride their bikes into town, it was just so dangerous," said resident, Wendy Reu.

When there's traffic coming from both directions, plus pedestrians crossing the bridge, cars will sometimes have to come to a complete stop to prevent hitting someone.

"There's one woman that walks across pushing a baby stroller. It's narrow, we're trying to keep someone from getting killed," said Groff.

"Anyone that lives over that way, that commutes to the village on foot, I'd imagine they'd be happy to see it," said Ginter.

The study will begin this spring. The village will then apply for more grants to fund construction, which is expected to cost around $900,000. They hope for building to start next year.

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