New ramps open on  massive interchange 1

The westbound Union Turnpike to westbound Grand Central Parkway ramp opened Friday, Oct. 8.

The westbound Union Turnpike to westbound Grand Central Parkway ramp is a new concept. The ramp from eastbound Jackie Robinson Parkway to eastbound GCP is a redesign, is carried on a new bridge structure, has standard lane and shoulder widths, which did not exist before, and eliminated a stop sign that had been at the bottom of the previous ramp.

The state Department of Transportation said approximately 600,000 drivers use the interchange daily, which causes extreme traffic.

“We are committed to building back our infrastructure to meet the challenges of the 21st Century and help our local communities flourish,” Gov. Hochul said in a statement. “These new ramps at the Kew Gardens Interchange will help alleviate congestion and make it easier for motorists to navigate this vital interchange, keeping goods and people on the move more safely.”

The project to enhance safety at the multifaceted junction has been underway since 2015. It’s been in the fourth final phase since early 2019, which is expected to cost $365 million in upgrades.

The state DOT told the Chronicle that the completion date is still expected for June 2022.

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