While often seen as an economic lifeline of another era, New York's canals are poised to have a big year for moving freight; almost two centuries after goods were first transported on the upstate New York waterway.
Will Farr, of Farr Auto Sales, says the new connector road has alleviated traffic along Route 342 - and that helps customers get in and out of his lot more efficiently.
Until recently, the only way to drive between Route 11 and Interstate 81 near Fort Drum was a two-lane road, Route 342. As the Army base grew, local businesses flocked there to serve the increasing traffic. But the state built an $87 million bypass to ease traffic and give military vehicles a direct route to Fort Drum’s main gate. I-781, as it’s known, opened last December. Local shop owners have had mixed reactions to the new road.
Transporting the millions of gallons of water, as well as equipment, sand, and other materials needed to hydraulically fracture a natural gas well requires quite a few truck trips, to put it mildly.
One well site could require up to 3,399 one-way truck trips [PDF], according to the New York Department of Environmental Conservation's 2011 draft environmental impact statement (dSGEIS) on hydrofracking.
All those trips by heavy trucks can quickly beat up and wear out roads if they're not built to handle it.