Construction begins to enhance safety, mobility on Staten Island Expressway

Oct. 27, 2020

Continuous auxiliary lane will give motorists a longer distance to merge on and off the expressway

New York Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo yesterday announced that construction has begun on the project to enhance safety and reduce congestion along a portion of the westbound Staten Island Expressway (I-278) in Staten Island.

Scheduled for completion in spring 2021, the project will connect the entrance and exit ramps between the northbound Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Expressway entrance ramp and the South Avenue exit ramp, creating a continuous auxiliary lane that will extend for more than half a mile and give motorists a longer distance to merge on and off the expressway. 

"As more and more people return to our roads, it is critically important that we continue upgrading infrastructure to enhance safety for motorists and reduce congestion," Gov. Cuomo said in a statement. "This project will deliver a better highway for motorists and improved local streets for Staten Island residents, enhancing New York's transit network to better meet current and future demands." 

The new auxiliary lane will allow motorists entering from northbound or southbound Dr. Martin Luther King Expressway to access Richmond Avenue (Exit 7) or South Avenue (Exit 6) without merging on to the Staten Island Expressway. It will also provide easier access from Victory Boulevard to Richmond Avenue and South Avenue via the Dr. Martin Luther King Expressway, helping to reduce traffic on local streets.

Additional improvements to be made as part of the $3.3 million project include two new overhead sign structures, new guide rails, and LED lighting. The westbound Staten Island Expressway within the project limits will be milled and paved with new pavement markings installed. 

"For Staten Islanders with a commute unlike any other in the country, these improvements to the Staten Island Expressway are welcomed news," Staten Island Borough President Oddo said in a statement. "The addition of this auxiliary lane to alleviate bottlenecking will allow residents to gain precious time back in their days. We hope this investment is the beginning of more to come, eventually leading to the completion of the HOV lane." 

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SOURCE: Office of Gov. Andrew Cuomo