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A Central New York Lawmaker Reacts To A Possible I-81 Summit

By Michael Benjamin

Oswego, NY – The transportation secretary in Virginia, Sean Connaughton, says he wants to hold a summit with transportation officials from all the states that contain parts of Interstate 81. That would include New York.

Central New York lawmaker, Dave Valesky (D-49) , says he hasn't heard about the proposed summit, but he says there are issues with I-81 in Central New York that could come up at a multi-state meeting.

"In Onondaga County," says Valesky, "the viaduct system that carries the interstate through downtown Syracuse is at the end of its useful lifespan. The engineers will tell you that something has to be done. Either [the viaducts] have to be replaced, or some other system developed."

The six states in the I-81 corridor met in 2008, and pledged their cooperation on common interstate issues.

Interstate 81 runs from Northern New York to near Knoxville, Tennessee in the south.