Officials say Route 28 paving goes all the way to Highmount
By Jay Braman Jr.
It looks as if the Route 28 repaving project will stretch all the way to the Ulster/Delaware county border at Highmount after all.
Announced with great fanfare in the fall by Ulster County Executive Mike Hein, the plan called for the use of federal stimulus money to put a brand new surface on the crumbling state highway.
But when the project began last month, the New York State Department of Transportation (DOT), which controls the highway and project, described the job as only going to Boiceville.
Allison Ackerman, a spokeswoman for the DOT, explained the plan as follows: “The project will include milling and resurfacing the travel lanes and shoulders on state Route 28, beginning just west of the intersection with state Route 375, in a westerly direction, to Route 28A (west),” she said. “The project will also include pavement upgrades from state Route 214 to the Delaware County line. Pavement markings will be restored as well.”
That’s when the phone started ringing off the hook at Shandaken Town Hall where Supervisor Rob Stanley began fielding angry complaints from residents outraged that the highway was not going to get the full treatment even though it needs it.
Stanley then made a call to Ulster County Planner Dennis Doyle, who said that contrary to published reports, all the people, departments and the construction firms confirm that the current paving contract and budgeting for the Route 28 repaving project is for milling and repaving to the county line in Highmount.
“Work has been progressing smoothly in the towns of Hurley and Olive, projections indicate that work will start here in Shandaken sometime in June or July,” Stanley said. “ The entire project is slated to continue through October of this year.”
Ackerman was asked to explain the confusion. “You spoke to the County Executive Hein regarding the work so I cannot confirm where the project limits came from,” she said. “The limits, once through the process, may have changed.”