Putnam Valley, NY – On Friday, October 21st, Assemblyman Kevin Byrne (R, C, Ref-Mahopac) and Senator Sue Serino (R, C, I-Hyde Park) joined first responders, other state and local officials, and residents by the Taconic State Parkway-Pudding Street Overpass to designate the recently completed overpass as the “Putnam Valley First Responders Bridge.” Earlier this year, Assemblyman Byrne and Senator Serino introduced legislation to rename the bridge in honor of the community’s first responders. Governor Hochul signed the legislation into law this past summer.
The overpass, which was completed after over two decades of advocacy, safely connects Pudding Street over the Taconic State Parkway. Before its construction, citizens crossing the parkway had to wait for both the north-bound and south-bound lanes of traffic to become idle before crossing to the opposite side of Pudding Street. The overpass resolved a serious safety and traffic issue that was considered by residents to be treacherous for decades.
“The construction of this bridge was something that has been talked about for many decades,” said Byrne. “Growing up in Putnam Valley, I’ve seen firsthand how dangerous this crossing used to be for citizens, school buses, and even our first responders in the area. Getting this capital project completed, which cost about $28 million, was absolutely critical for the continued safety of this community. It is because of the collaboration of so many people, including members of our emergency services, that we were able to make this bridge a reality for Putnam Valley. It only made sense to name the bridge after Putnam Valley’s first responders who put their lives on the line as they respond to emergencies and work with their peers throughout the county to keep the community safe.”
“This was a project that community members advocated for since the first day I took office and was also a project that Congresswoman Sue Kelly started over 20 years ago” said Senator Sue Serino. “I am so happy that this project was finally able to be completed, and I thank everyone involved for their tireless effort in making this bridge become a reality. This bridge is a prime example of what happens when partners at each and every level of government come together to get something done. Today is about our first responders and I can’t thank them enough”
“When discussing the name for this bridge, nothing seemed more fitting than to name it after our first responders,” said Jacqueline Annabi, Town of Putnam Valley Supervisor. “Our first responders are our heroes. This naming is just a small expression of our gratitude for the selfless work that they do on a daily basis. I want to thank Senator Sue Serino and Assemblyman Kevin Byrne for sponsoring this bill and for their leadership in making this come to fruition.”
“The structure that stands behind us today is an example of what can happen when we all work together for public good,” said Kevin McConville, Putnam County Sheriff. “This bridge is critical for the safety and well-being of our children and the citizens of Putnam County. I want to thank Assemblyman Byrne, Senator Serino, the Putnam Valley Town Board, and Putnam Valley Supervisor Jackie Annabi for their work in making this happen.”
“This is a feat that I’m not sure if I thought would ever be completed, and it is amazing that it finally got done,” said Ken Clair, Commissioner of the Putnam County Bureau of Emergency Services. “We have been receiving letters from citizens for years at the Bureau with concern for how dangerous this intersection used to be. It is a great honor to name this bridge after the first responders in Putnam Valley, who work tirelessly to keep our community safe.”
“On behalf of the Putnam Valley Central School District, I want to take this opportunity to thank the residents of the Roaring Brook community for their grassroots advocacy towards making this project a reality,” said Dr. Jeremy Luft, Superintendent of the Putnam Valley Central School District. “I also thank our local and state government representatives for their leadership on this project as well. This project was long overdue, as I grew up in the area and can speak firsthand to how dangerous this intersection was. We now are able to provide our children with safe passage to and from school.”
“Putnam Valley Volunteer Fire Department deeply appreciates the dedication of this bridge to the hard working first responders in our town,” said Frank DiMarco, First Assistant Chief of the Putnam Valley Volunteer Fire Department. “While most of us do not seek any recognition for doing our jobs, we still are extremely grateful of the dedication of this bridge in our honor.”
Following the conclusion of the press conference, Byrne and Serino presented First Assistant Chief Frank DiMarco of the Putnam Valley Volunteer Fire Department and First Lieutenant Cheryl Silvernail of the Putnam Valley Volunteer Ambulance Corps with proclamations commemorating the naming of the bridge after the indelible service that their organizations provide the community.
Information about the legislation can be found here: https://nyassembly.gov/leg/?default_fld=&leg_video=&bn=A08455&term=2021&Summary=Y&Memo=Y&Text=Y
Video from the press conference can be found here:
The above information was previously distributed and made public for immediate release by the Office of Assemblyman Kevin Byrne