County applies for federal grants to improve Route 155

GUILDERLAND — Federal grant applications for improvements to Route 155, Watervliet Shaker Road, and Albany Shaker Road that have been completed recently by Albany County Executive Daniel McCoy and Colonie Supervisor Paula Mahan would improve the portion of Route 155 that is within or close to Guilderland.

Total project costs would be $2.3 million, according to the application.

The grant applications call for paving, including some rehabilitation and reconstruction, 4.1 miles of Route 155 from Route 20 to Watervliet Shaker Road.

The project will also include low-cost intersection safety improvements such as signal-timing updates and reflectorized backplates to make traffic signals more visible, said the commissioner of the Albany County Department of Public Works, Lisa Ramundo.

“New Karner Road carries up to 23,000 vehicles a day and was last repaved in 2007,” Ramundo said.

According to the application, the annual average daily traffic, in 2017, for Route 20 to Washington Avenue Extension was 18,575, and from Old State Road to Albany Street was 20,917.

The applications, announced in December, were submitted to the Capital District Transportation Committee in November. They are for federal Transportation Improvement Program grants.

According to the application, in or near Guilderland, the grants would be used to:

— Extend the left-turn lane at the southern approach to East Old State Road, “where left turn queues regularly exceed the left turn lane’s storage length”;

— Add sidewalks along the three-tenths of a mile from Pine Knob Drive to Corporate Circle, to help connect Westmere to the west end of the city of Albany;

— Add high-visibility crosswalks and pedestrian indications with countdown timers to the signals at Corporate Circle, East Old State Road, and Albany Street, including “leading pedestrian indicators,” which give pedestrians a head start; and

— Add sidewalks between Route 20 and Gladwish Avenue.

They would also bring improvements to the traffic lights at the intersections of Corporate Circle, Washington Avenue Extension, East Old State Road, and Albany Street. All of these except Corporate Circle have, according to the application, “significant crash histories.”

In addition, the shoulder on the southwest corner of Central Avenue would be widened, “where the lack of shoulder causes turning trucks to override the curb, and forces bicyclists into the through lane,” the application says, and sidewalks between Albany Street and Central Avenue would be added.

Further afield, the grants would also:

— Reconstruct seven-tenths of a mile of Watervliet Shaker Road between Route 155 and Sand Creek Road with additional lanes to help ease congestion, new traffic signals for pedestrians, and a new bike route; and

— Improve Albany Shaker Road between Wolf and Everett roads, with a reduced speed limit and new pedestrian crossing features.


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