[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="200" caption="Rip Van Winkle Bridge"]
[/caption]Traffic and revenue on the five bridges operated by the New York State Bridge Authority
showed increases in the latter part of 2010 that could signal better economic times in the future, according to Joseph Ruggiero, executive director of the authority, who added that the figure could be a harbinger of an economic recovery already under way. “A few years ago, I have been told, our staff actually showed a decline in traffic almost indicating that the recession was to come and, then, it did,” he said in a Mid Hudson News Service
report that ran in the Kingston Freeman
today. “Hopefully, this (increase in traffic) is an indication that maybe we will be coming out of it.” The Newburgh-Beacon Bridge, which is part of the I-84 system, typically carries the most traffic of the five bridges. The others operated by the Bridge Authority are the Rip Van Winkle, Kingston-Rhinecliff, Mid-Hudson at Poughkeepsie-Highland, and Bear Mountain Bridge. The New York State Thruway Authority operates two bridges, the Tappan Zee Bridge to the south and the Berkshire Extension bridge to the north, known as the Castleton Bridge, separate from the NYSBA.