Mobilizing the Region

Issue 226 June 25, 1999

Trump Tunnel Lives?

New York State agencies will conduct a public hearing Wednesday, June 30 (see calendar) on the long-discussed proposal to tear down Manhattan's west side Miller Highway and put it in a tunnel beneath the new riverfront park that is to accompany Donald Trump's Riverside South development between 59th and 72nd Streets.

The project has been controversial for a variety of reasons, not least that the state rebuilt the elevated Miller Highway at a cost of $86 million just five years ago. Mayor Giuliani, who can veto state highway plans in NYC, appeared to quash the tunnel project in 1995 when he declared it would be a poor use of scarce capital funds. It is unclear now whether the Mayor's outlook has changed. Others wonder why the state seems eager to bury the highway next to Trump's development while it drags its feet on the more popular Gowanus tunnel proposal, and is seeking to impose a new elevated highway connector on the South Bronx at 177th Street.

In any case, the Empire State Development Corporation and the NY State DOT have drafted an environmental impact statement for the Trump tunnel that will be the subject of Wednesday's hearing.

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