Plan Re-Routes Some Traffic from Peace Bridge Plaza

June 12, 2013 Updated Jun 12, 2013 at 12:11 AM EDT

By Rachel Elzufon

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June 12, 2013 Updated Jun 12, 2013 at 12:11 AM EDT

Buffalo, NY (WKBW) - It's one thing to cross the Peace Bridge, but imagine living next to it.

For years, people who live in the neighborhood around Front Park have complained of congestion, ill health effects and numerous other problems -- directly linked to the bridge.

Right now, vehicles from the Peace Bridge Plaza must go through the neighborhood around Front Park to get on the 190-Northbound of Buffalo.

A ramp to the 190-Southbound already exists off of the Peace Bridge Plaza.

When traffic backs up, it leaves long lines of idling cars and trucks.

Tuesday evening, state and local officials discussed the problem and a possible solution that would re-route traffic away from the homes.

$22 million in federal and state money would help pay for the re-routing off of the Peace Bridge Plaza.

The new plan would get rid of Baird Drive, filling it in with green area for Front Park. Instead, vehicles heading to the 190-Northbound would exit on a new ramp off of the Peace Bridge Plaza. Officials are also looking at building an entrance ramp off of Porter.

The project has been a long time going. It has been on-and-off for 20 years.

In additional to several "environmental processes," Maria Lehman, the Project Manager, says "The primary reason for that was that there wasn't money for where the preferred alternative was going, and so that project got shut down. But it came up with a lot of really good ideas."

However, many residents say, this is not enough, especially when it comes to the fumes for idling trucks nearby.

The next step, an Environmental Impact Statement, will examine the air qualify in the neighborhood.

Anyone with questions, comments or concerns about the idea should e-mail nygateway@dot.ny.gov.