Bridge detour plans come under scrutiny
John Mason is reporting in the Register-Star on the status of the Route 9H Taghkanic Creek Bridge project. The state Department of Transportation intends to replace the existing bridge across Taghkanic Creek, near Stone Mill Road, Yates Road and Route 29. A steel girder bridge with a reinforced concrete deck will be installed and new pavement approaches to the bridge will be built. State officials, contractors, Columbia County and Claverack town officials and residents met Tue., Feb. 16, at the town garage to discuss the project. Mason reports that little of the meeting was devoted to a discussion of the bridge itself. He said most of the conversation was about the proposed detour the replacement project requires. Construction of the detour on Yates and Stone Mill roads, including the installation of a temporary bridge, is scheduled to begin March 17. Following completion of the 9H bridge, the temporary Stone Mill bridge will be removed and the old one destroyed. The detour was investigated and cleared with the town of Claverack in 2014. Opposition to the detour as designed is based on its proximity to historic properties located on Yates Road and a potential mid-18th-century industrial archaeology site adjacent to the Stone Mill Road bridge. As a result, the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation is calling for a Phase I archaeological survey. The next stage is for the involved state agencies to determine if the problems cited by the historic preservation office can be resolved and if an archaelogical dig is necessary. Read the full story in the Register-Star.