Bethlehem residents come out against bypass

"These are a series of recommendations to be implemented over time (if approved). Unfortunately, there's no money set aside for it," said Cunningham. "Once this plan is approved and adopted, we can forward it to the DOT."

The approved plans would then be used as a tool to apply for state grants and allow the county Department of Transportation to budget money for it.

"These projects would be way, way too expensive for the town taxpayers alone," he concluded.

The recommendations from the study suggested that a new Thruway interchange could be constructed to divert the heavy truck traffic from the area, but several residents pointed out that there are no such plans with the New York State Thruway Authority.

Lisa Evan, who lives near Henry Hudson Park, asked why the bypass was necessary at all.

"Why not look at no bypass and look at the routes that currently exists and improve them and use them," she said at the public hearing.

Bill Hillman, who lives off of Clapper Road and described his family as farm owners for the past 85 years, said that landowners have to disclose the possibility of a road coming through their property to potential buyers.

"Imagine your property or business is in line with this bypass which may or may not happen in 20 years," Hillman said. "Close your eyes tonight and imagine you are in line with this road."

Hillman said that the proposed plans have "already snatched a multi-million dollar property deal from my family," because of disclosure problems with a possible bypass.

Residents also asked if the bus service from Albany's south end, which Donovan said has more than doubled in recent years, was a viable solution to traffic woes and whether or not it was necessary.

A CDTA bus, number seven, goes from Albany to the Towne Center Plaza's Wal-Mart and to the neighboring Price Chopper.

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