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NYC's poor roads hit drivers in the wallet
Nearly two-thirds of the New York City-area's major roads are in bad shape, costing drivers here an average of nearly $2,300 a year, the highest in the state, according to a report released Wednesday.
The report from a Washington-based group called TRIP put a spotlight on the poor condition of New York's infrastructure amid uncertainty around federal money that pays for road and bridge repairs with a tax on gas.
Poor roadways in New York state costs drivers $20.3 billion total in vehicle operating costs, lost time and gas due to traffic congestion and crashes, according to the report.
TRIP joined with the General Contractors Association and AAA to call for a new long-term federal transportation bill as the current one is set to expire in September, which would cause a delay in payments to states for road work.
"The state, their road construction program, without a federal transportation bill, will diminish by 40%" or $3 billion, said Denise Richardson, executive director of the GCA. "How many projects can you continually defer until you have a crisis?"
Among the major roads in the city, like the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway or the FDR Drive, 51% were ranked poor, while 23% were "mediocre." A quarter of the major roads were in good or fair condition. Nearly 10% of the city's state-maintained bridges, meanwhile, were in poor condition, while a quarter of them needed work to protect against age and wear; more than half of the bridges needed preventive and routine maintenance.
"These conditions will only get worse if greater funding is not made available at the state and federal levels," said Will Wilkins, Trip's executive director.d