Grant will help restore bridges over Keuka Outlet

Staff Writer
The Chronicle Express
One of two foot and bicycle bridges that will be restored with help from a New York state grant.

The Village of Penn Yan received word Monday that it will receive $502,800 to repair two bridges over the Keuka Outlet.

Mayor Leigh MacKerchar says the grant will enable the village to improve the two bridges on either side of the Main Street bridge for pedestrian use.

The grant was announced Monday along with 67 other projects across New York State totaling about $70 million.

The two bridges were previously railroad trestles. The bridge between Main Street and Liberty Street has been a favorite fishing site for many years, but was blocked off last year when an engineering study brought its safety into question. While some recommended demolishing the structure, others said it serves as a good filter for floating debris that might otherwise clog the Keuka Lake Outlet Compact’s flood gates at the Main Street bridge.

This bridge will link Water Street to the Keuka Outlet Trail from the parking area behind Water Street Wines & Spirits and the newly developed Birkett Landing Apartments.

The bridge downstream from Main Street has been part of the Keuka Outlet Trail for several years, but is in need of repairs.

The projects, funded by the Federal Highway Administration and which leverage a total investment of $103.7 million, will promote walking and biking, and boost tourism and economic development opportunities in dozens of communities across the state.

“These projects will help communities become more walkable and bicycle friendly, as well as show off the natural beauty that exists in every corner of this state,” Governor Cuomo said. “I thank the Federal Highway Administration and our representatives for helping the state secure this funding so that residents and visitors alike can enjoy New York like never before.”

The projects include the addition of accessible sidewalks, improved pedestrian access to public transportation services, construction of new bicycle and pedestrian facilities and the preservation and conversion of abandoned railroad corridors for trail use.