Highway Closure Angers Lawmaker

LITTLE VALLEY – The closure of Interstate 86 from exit 21 to exit 23 has generated a bit of problem, according to one Cattaraugus County lawmaker.

President of the Cattaraugus County Legislature Norman Marsh, R-Little Valley, presented a resolution to the members of the Public Works Committee stating his disapproval of the detour that has been posted on Route 417 during the anticipated five months of road work on the interstate.

“This only makes the state aware of the situation,” Marsh said. “The lights they have installed are terrible. I have received numerous emails from people, telling me how poorly timed the lights are and how long their commute has become.”

One such story involved waits of up to 30 minutes to get through the intersection of Route 219 and Route 417, in the city of Salamanca. Some waits have been longer, Marsh said.

“I know the state is in a tough spot,” Marsh said, “but, in some cases, two hours to get through the stretch and no place to pass is a bit absurd.”

The resolution will go before the entire legislature Wednesday for approval.

The construction project on Interstate 86 closed the 7-mile portion as crews complete a $21 million project is slated to take about five months to complete, with detours taking travelers along Route 417 from Seneca Junction (exit 23), into the city of Salamanca, about a 20-mile reroute.