Utica Street bridge under construction

"Construction on the Utica Street Bridge may cause backup for commuters and local residents, although the police department does not see it as a major issue.

""We haven’t been doing anything, they [Department of Transportation] rerouted the traffic and reprogrammed the lights so the timing works, it pretty much takes care of itself," said Captain Michael Beckwith of the Oswego City Police Department.

"Nevertheless, the police department is working with the New York State Department of Transportation in case issues do arise.

"Intersection changes were the result of lane closures on the bridge and traffic lights were also reprogrammed so that they kept traffic moving efficently.

""Due to the change in intersections, traffic tends to back up during the afternoon at lunchtime and when people are leaving work," Beckwith said. The officers had not anticipated a big increase at the start of the semester.

""I’m sure there is going to be a slight increase," Beckwith said, "I don’t think it’s going to be significant enough to have a huge impact."

"Likewise, OPD Public Relations Officer Captain Tory DeCaire stated that nothing was reported to them about any difficulties, but there is an increase in traffic during the fall.

""Typically, I think from year to year we find that there is more traffic in the fall and spring than there are in the summer months, taking aside celebrations, such as the Harborfest, etc."

"On the other hand, some students do see it as a major issue.

""It’s a hassle, the traffic over there sucks," said Kyle Cardinal, a junior health and wellness major.

"Furthermore, provisions have been made so that businesses have access and so that cars can get in and out of the parking lots.

"Barb Hudson, manager of Paul’s Big M, stated that the construction is not affecting business at all but traffic makes it hard for customers to get in and out of the parking lot.

"Along with Hudson, Sherry Bame, manager of Bame’s Wine and Liquor stated that the construction does not appear to be affecting her business.

"Construction began on March 22 of this year and is not expected to be completed until Aug. 6, 2011, according Tom Munson, the engineer in charge of construction.

""At the moment it’s inconvenient and annoying, but it’s something that the community needs to improve it’s infrastructure," said Adam Armstrong a junior cinema and screen studies major.

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