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May 11, 2017 - 8:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in infrastructure, batavia, news, Vine Street.

Press release:

The Department of Public Works will be holding an informational meeting regarding the scheduled installation of new water main on Vine St (East Main to East Ave), Chase Park (Vine St to Elm St), and Elm St (Chase Park to East Ave), and the installation of new sanitary sewer on Elm St (East Ave to North St) this year.

The meeting will be held Thursday, May 11, 2017 at City Hall, in the 2nd floor Board Room at 6:00pm. A brief project overview will be given with staff available to answer questions and review the construction plans. 

April 18, 2017 - 12:29pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in infrastructure, news, michael ranzenhofer.

Press release:

State Senator Michael H. Ranzenhofer has announced today that the new budget will help to jump-start more infrastructure improvement projects throughout Western New York. The 2017-18 State Budget allocates $29 billion for transportation funding, representing a nearly $2 billion year-over-year increase.  

“The new budget delivers Upstate New York’s fair share of state transportation dollars and commits a record level of funding for critical projects. This funding boost will help to improve the condition of our infrastructure and strengthen our economy,” Ranzenhofer said.

The new budget increases funding by:
• $1.5 billion to accelerate statewide road and bridge projects;
• $65 million for local infrastructure repair projects; and
• $50 million for the local Bridge NY program.

A total of $603 million in funding will help municipalities with additional infrastructure improvement projects. The budget allocates $438 million for the Consolidated Local Street and Highway Improvement program (CHIPS), $100 million for the Pave NY program and $65 million for the Extreme Winter Recovery program.

“A record level of state funding will be going directly to local governments to help with repairs to improve Western New York’s highways, roads and bridges. Our crumbling infrastructure has been rated poor in the past. This funding is desperately needed,” Ranzenhofer said.

Genesee County


2016-17 Budget* ($)


Budget** ($)

Year-over-year Change ($)

Percent Change

City of Batavia





Town of Alabama





Town of Alexander





Town of Batavia





Town of Bergen





Town of Bethany





Town of Byron





Town of Darien





Town of Elba





Town of Le Roy





Town of Oakfield





Town of Pavilion





Town of Pembroke





Town of Stafford





Village of Alexander





Village of Bergen





Village of Corfu





Village of Elba





Village of Le Roy





Village of Oakfield





County of Genesee





February 28, 2017 - 11:17am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news, infrastructure, Tracy Avenue.

Press release:

On Wednesday, March 1, the City of Batavia Water Department will be repairing a water main on Tracy Avenue starting at 9 a.m. The water will be turned off on Tracy Avenue from Hart Street to North Street.

We will keep water service interruption to a minimum. This work may result in a period of discolored water in this general area after service is restored. Residents should check to make sure water clarity has returned before resuming activities such as laundry, which may be impacted. 

February 27, 2017 - 3:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Bethany, infrastructure, Bethany Center Road Bridge, news.

There will be an informational open house at Bethany Town Offices from 1 to 4 p.m., Wednesday, about the planned reconstruction of the Bethany Center Road Bridge over Route 20 in Bethany. CORRECTION: Time is 4 to 6 p.m.

There are no formal presentations, but NYT Department of Transportation engineers will be on hand to share details of the project and answer questions about the scope of the work, impact on travel during the six-month construction period, and other concerns residents might have about the project.

The current bridge was built in 1932 and is marred by cracking and crumbling cement and exposed rebar.

The new bridge is expected to have a functional life of at least 75 years and have two standard lanes that are 11-feet wide and shoulders with railings that are six-feet wide.

The $1.4 million project is expected to begin construction in the spring of 2018 and be completed by the fall of 2018.

Since Bethany Center Road ends three miles south of the bridge, detour signs will not be posted. There are parallel alternative routes.

When the current bridge is demolished, Route 20 will be closed for about two weeks. The detour will be Old Telephone Road, which runs parallel to Route 20.                

November 26, 2016 - 6:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, infrastructure, news.


More than dozen homes on Edgewood Drive, Batavia, are affected by a water main break today.

Town of Batavia crews are on scene and repairs will take up to two or three more hours.

UPDATE 6:30 p.m.: Supervisor Gregory Post informed reporter Mike Pettinella, an Edgewood Drive resident, that the main valve has been installed, and for all homeowners affected by the situation to turn their cold water on and let it run for 10 minutes to rid it of any possible discoloration. Crews are filling the large hole with stone, and have placed cones around the site as they continue their time on the job -- nearly nine hours.

UPDATE 3:15 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 27.: Supervisor Post is on the scene, and indicated that corrosion caused a main valve to malfunction. A new valve has been delivered to the scene and crews are in the process of installing it and reconnecting it to the water line.

October 31, 2016 - 12:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Summit Street, infrastructure, batavia, news.


With paving underway today, the $2.5 million reconstruction project for Summit Street is near completion for the major portion of the work. There are still trees to plant and other finishing touches that need to be done; crews could wrap the major work up today.

October 29, 2016 - 4:09pm
posted by Billie Owens in Summit Street, news, infrastructure, batavia.

The $2.5 million Summit Street reconstruction project that started this summer in the heart of the city is winding down and Matt Worth, the city's Department of Public Works superintendent, says he expects everything to be completed week's end.

By contract, the work has to be "substantially done" by the end of the month, that's Monday. 

Worth said putting down the black top will technically substantially complete the project. Though that task is "a little weather-dependant, the forecast looks like that will be happening Monday."

Next is the completing the landscaping.

Thirty trees were removed because they conflicted with installation of curbs and sidewalks, or they were in a deteriorated condition. Sixty-two new trees are being planted. Worth added that this is an ideal time to plant the trees, according to the nursery they are working with, and it's apparently good to wait for the trees to become dormant for the season before planting them.

Grass seeding has been completed on the east side, and the finishing touch to the landscaping-- grass seeding on the west side -- will be done by Friday.

Also, crosswalks and stop bars will need to be painted on the fresh asphalt.

"We're really looking to bundle this up, so by the end of next week, I believe those things will have occurred," Worth said.

The Rochester engineering firm of Erdman Anthony has been supervising independent contract companies on this locally administered federal-aid project.

Workers removed the old road, put in new storm, sewer and drainage systems, and paved the road. Federal and state funds covered all but about $100,000 of the cost, with the city responsible for the rest.

The city also funded a $350,000 project to install new water main on Summit Street.

Our news partner WBTA AM/FM contributed to this story.

For previous coverage about the city's infrastructure projects this year, click here.

October 6, 2016 - 11:53am
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news, infrastructure.

Today, Oct. 6, the City of Batavia Water Department is repairing a fire hydrant on Redfield Parkway. Work began at 9 a.m. The water will be turned off on Redfield Parkway from West Main Street to Richmond Avenue. The city will keep water service interruption to a minimum.

This work may result in a period of discolored water in this general area after service is restored. Residents should check to make sure water clarity has returned before resuming activities such as laundry which may be impacted.

September 18, 2016 - 2:28pm
posted by Billie Owens in Darien, infrastructure, news.

Press release:

The Town Board of the Town of Darien has filed an application for grant and loan assistance with USDA Rural Development for a Water District #6.

This application has been accepted and has been moved to the funding process. The total cost of the project is estimated at $24,880,000. The Town anticipates receiving a grant of approximately $6,800,000 and the balance in the form of a low-interest loan from the USDA Rural Development Agency. 

The project will involve:

  • The installation of approximately 375,000 linear feet of water main along all Town roadways not currently provided with public water service;
  • The erection of a 300,000-gallon water storage tank, and a 500,000-gallon storage tank;
  • The installation of a pumping station;
  • and the upgrading an existing pumping station.

The project will serve 776 residential households within the Town. Consistent with Town Law and the procedures of Rural Development, the Darien Town Board will conduct public information meetings prior to making a commitment to undertake the proposed project.

Due to anticipated large attendance, the Public Information Meetings will be held at the Darien Volunteer Fire Department at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 28 and at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 1. It is located at 10537 Allegheny Road, Darien Center.

David Hagelberger


Town of Darien

August 17, 2016 - 9:38am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Tracy Avenue, batavia, infrastructure.

Press release:

The City of Batavia Water Department will be making a repair on a broken water line on Tracy Avenue between Washington Avenue and North Street starting at 9 a.m. today. Tracy Avenue will be closed from Washington Avenue to North Street for all traffic. Please avoid Tracy Avenue until repairs are made. Water service may be interrupted on Tracy to make the repair.

August 16, 2016 - 4:54pm
posted by Billie Owens in steve hawley, infrastructure, elba, news.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) today announced that the Village of Elba has been awarded more than $2 million to fund a drinking water improvement project that will help bolster the area’s clean water supply, fix and replace old pipes, sewer lines, treatment plants and assist with design and construction costs.

The grants are being distributed to various municipalities throughout the state as part of New York’s Water Infrastructure Improvement Act.

“Ensuring a clean and bountiful water supply for our citizens is one of the fundamental responsibilities of our state and local governments,” Hawley said. “Unfortunately, many pipes, sewer lines and treatment facilities were installed decades ago and were not made with the same durable materials we use today.

"As a result, New York’s infrastructure is failing, which places an extraordinary financial burden on local governments that are already handcuffed due to state mandates. I am pleased to see that the state has stepped up and is providing over two-thirds of the estimated cost of this project, which is vital for the health and well-being of our residents.”

August 4, 2016 - 11:56am
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news, infrastructure, street work.

Press release from the city's Department of Public Works:

A water main tie-in is scheduled for Friday, Aug. 5, on North Street at Summit Street. This is part of the Summit Street Reconstruction Project. This work will require North Street to be closed to traffic from Bank Street to Ross Street until the tie in is completed.   

Water service will be interrupted on North Street from Bank Street to Ross Street, Seneca Avenue and part of Tracy Avenue. Water service should be restored by early afternoon. 

This may cause temporary discolored water in the area or low pressure. Please check to make sure that water clarity has returned before doing any laundry or other activities which could be adversely affected.

Thank you for your cooperation.

July 28, 2016 - 7:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in State Street, washington avenue, batavia, news, infrastructure.


Crews with Blue Heron Construction set a manhole today at Washington Avenue and State Street, park of the sewer reconstruction project this summer along Washington Avenue.

The area around Jefferson Avenue, Washington and State has been closed for a few weeks, but the project is getting closer to the finish line, said Matt Worth, director of Public Works.

Here's what Worth told us in an email:

They expect to be through the intersection tomorrow (State/Washington will open back up) and then the bypass pumping should no longer be required. Next week an additional crew is expected and it is anticipated that the new water and sewer services to the houses between Jefferson and State Street will be connected along with the unexpected water main work that is required on Jefferson Avenue.

If all goes well, everything west of State Street would then be back open (or very close) to traffic by the end of next week. This would leave construction between State and Bank and the storm sewer crossing on State Street to up near Park Avenue and final milling and paving (Ellicott Avenue to Ross Street) left to complete, with completion of the project before school is back in session.



July 21, 2016 - 10:36am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news, infrastructure.

Water service has been shut off by the City of Batavia Water Department to businesses on Industrial Boulevard, Apollo Drive and Treadeasy Way.

Crews are repairing a water leak.

There is no ETA for when service will be restored.

June 28, 2016 - 10:49am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news, infrastructure.

The city will receive $2 million in federal block grant money to repave six streets, Public Works Director Matt Worth told the City Council on Monday night.

The six streets will be milled and repaved at a cost of $2.5 million, and there may yet be some state money to help cover some of the cost difference.

The streets are Clinton Street, East Avenue, Liberty Street, South Liberty Street, Swan Street and Vine Street.

The city will now seek proposals from engineering firms, with the selection of the firm in the fall and then preliminary engineering work can begin. The final design would be completed in the fall of 2017 with work beginning in the summer of 2018.

April 19, 2016 - 9:54am
posted by Howard B. Owens in infrastructure, genesee county, Highway Department.

An increase in funding from the state and lower asphalt prices will help the county catch up on road repaving over the next five years, Highway Superintendent Tim Hens told the County Legislature's Public Service Committee Monday afternoon.

This year, the county will have slightly more than $2 million available for road and bridge projects, that's a 25-percent increase over last year.

The state is sending the county an additional $382,000 as part of a Pave NY program initiated this year and intended to increase funding to local governments for five years.

At the same time, the cost of asphalt has dropped by about 20 percent, Hens said.

"This will let us catch up over the next five years and get us where we ought to be," Hens said.

Maintenance has been deferred on many roads in recent years because of tight revenue and high asphalt prices.

That will help with the roads, but what about the bridges?

The county is responsible for 284 bridges (including culverts) and about 50 percent are deficient, Hens said.

The county needs about $15 million for bridge repair and maintenance, and while the state is starting a Bridge NY program, it won't meet all of the county's needs.

"Eventually, the county will probably have to bond some money or do something long term in the millions of dollars to catch up on those bridges," Hens said.

Many of the county's bridges are 65 to 70 years old.  

"They're running out of life and you take a bridge here or there on some of those rural roads and some of the detours get pretty long really quick," Hens said.

March 3, 2016 - 1:53pm
posted by Billie Owens in hawley, infrastructure, news.

Press release:

Assemblyman Steve Hawley (R,C,I-Batavia) sharply criticized Gov. Cuomo on Wednesday over his proposed plan to widen the disparity between Upstate and Downstate infrastructure funding in this year’s budget. Some say the New York City area could receive as much as $4 billion more than Upstate for things like airport reconstructions, the Tappan Zee Bridge and budget deficits at the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).

“What the governor and my legislative colleagues from Downstate do not understand is that the vast majority of Upstate residents use automobiles as their primary form of transportation,” Hawley said. “There is no such thing as a subway or readily available taxi in Western New York. Everyone from our children who ride the bus to school, to our parents who drive to work, to our farmers who transport produce to market uses local roads, bridges and highways. Deficient infrastructure puts families at risk every day and continues to cause expensive repairs to the suspensions and tires of automobiles. We are part of New York too and deserve our fair share!”

Hawley’s comments come after recent news articles surfaced illustrating how Downstate politicians are trying to secure more funding for pet projects during budget negotiations. A recent story regarding the Rochester area has brought to light the desperate state of its bridges.Local highway superintendents and other public officials have echoed Hawley’s calls for more adequate funding of Upstate infrastructure.

“The Town of Hamlin, like many small rural towns, desperately needs their fair share of infrastructure money,” said Town of Hamlin Highway Superintendent Steven Baase. “There is no mass transit here, so everything relies on the condition of roads and bridges. The price of rebuilding or maintaining roads is skyrocketing, but we still have to comply with the tax cap. We are falling farther behind in road repairs and something has to give. Please reinstate the infrastructure parity between Upstate and Downstate in the budget. It is imperative!”

February 11, 2016 - 12:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, infrastructure.


With blueprints spread out in front of him on a long table, the city's director of public works, Matt Worth, walked a group of Washington Avenue residents through plans for an upgrade to the sewer system along their street this summer.

The impact on residents during construction should be minimal, Worth said, but, hey, it's a construction project.

"It's going to be a busy summer," Worth said. "I'd like to tell you it's not going to be disruptive, but I'd be kinda kiddin' ya. It's going to be noisy and loud and (with) bumps and things like that, but hopefully, when it's all said and done, the end product is going to be very good."

When it's done, residents will have a new sewer line, many will have new water service hookups and the street from Ross Street to Ellicott Avenue will be completely repaved.

The entire project will cost about $1.4 million and is part of the city's capital project, paid for with rate increases, to improve the water and sewer system, which in many parts of the city is buckling under the strain of age.

Once started, the project will take four months to complete.

During construction, residents along Washington should always have sewer service, Worth said.

The contractor will work to keep disruptions to a minimum. If a driveway is blocked, it will only be for a day and the contractor will provide advance notice. The sidewalk will be kept clear and walkable and a engineer will be on site at all times to ensure the project goes smoothly.

"Construction projects like this are dirty," Worth said. "They create dust. If it rains, they create mud. There are bumps and bruises and stuff, however, the contractor is expected to require to maintain the project in a safe manner."

Residents shouldn't need to worry about driving into a big hole, Worth said.

Where the sewer line crosses a connect from a residence to a water main, the connection from the main to the shutoff valve (by the property line at the sidewalk) will be replaced.

Which raised a question from a resident about replacing the water line to the house. Worth said if the line is galvanized, it might be best to replace it with copper pipe. The galvinized pipe isn't a health issue, Worth said, but the circumference of the pipe could be greatly constricted, reducing water pressure. 

"Quite often, the homeowner does use this as an opportunity to change the pipe all the way to the house," Worth said. "You would hire a plumber to do that."

The project might also uncover problems with sewer connection, such as damaged clay tile or roots growing through the line. If workers discover anything like that when connecting the new line to the homeowner's line, they will let the homeowner know.

"If (the line) is cast iron and has worked as a sewer it's likely to continue to work as a sewer," Worth said.

Washington Towers won't be affected by the project because all of their connections are on State Street.

The doctors' offices along Washington all share common sewer and water lines, so there is only one connection to deal with.

Water service should not be affected, unless the connection line needs to be replaced, in which case the homeowner will be given advance notice, water will be shut off for only a few hours during the day, and there should be no water discoloration.

"However, there's going to be large excavation equipment digging adjacent to where all this is and unfortunately sometimes bad things happen," Worth said "If there is a water main break or a significant event, yes you could very well see conditions like that."

The contractor will reseed the parkway, but the quality of the grass will really depend on the attention and care given to it by the homeowner.

"If the homeowner is there and waters it every other day, you're going to have grass and it's going to stabilize and it's not going to be a headache for you," Worth said.


January 26, 2016 - 11:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, infrastructure.

Press release:

There is a water main break on Union Street in front of Notre Dame High School, a Water Department crew has responded to begin the repairs. Water service on Union Street will be affected in this area, and water discoloration may be noticed in the surrounding areas. Union Street will be closed to traffic between Richmond Avenue and Soccio Street until repairs are complete.

The repair of the water service line on Washington Avenue has been completed.

UPDATE: 4:50 p.m.: Union Street has reopened. The Break is repaired.

January 25, 2016 - 3:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, infrastructure.

Press release:

The City of Batavia Water Department will be making a repair on a broken water service line on Washington Avenue Tuesday morning at 9 a.m. Water service should not be interrupted to make this repair. Please try to avoid the area between Bank Street and Summit Street as travel lanes may be restricted.


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