URBANA – Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the start of construction on a $12.2 million project to improve resiliency along State Route 54A in the Town of Urbana just north of the Village of Hammondsport, Steuben County. The project will install new drainage and other enhancements to bolster the roadway’s ability to withstand heavy rains and help prevent the travel disruptions that have previously occurred on this vital roadway during instances of severe weather. State Route 54A runs along the west side of Keuka Lake and provides access to many popular destinations in the Finger Lakes Region.
“With climate change ushering in ever-more frequent severe weather events, we need to ensure our vital infrastructure is ready to withstand whatever Mother Nature has in store for us,” Governor Hochul said. “This investment along State Route 54A in Steuben County will help reduce the road closures and other travel headaches that have become all-too common on this key roadway.”
State Route 54A traverses a steep embankment along the west shore of Keuka Lake and during times of severe weather has been prone to slope failures and other hazards that have impacted travel.
The project, which is being funded by a Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) as a Pre-Disaster Mitigation grant along with State funds, will install a 5-mile-long, closed drainage system that utilizes catch basins and corrugated lateral pipes to improve stormwater runoff and surface flows into Keuka Lake. It will also intercept groundwater in advance of the roadway, which will help fortify slope stability. New curbing will also be added to help with stormwater flows and the roadway will be repaved with a fresh layer of asphalt, smoothing travel for motorists.
This project is slated to be completed by summer 2025. Given the constraints of the roadway, motorists should expect localized work zones with a single-lane closure at the immediate site of the work. It is anticipated that crews will begin at the south end of State Route 54A and move north over the course of the season. This work zone will be removed during the winter months.
Full closures of the roadway at certain locations may be necessary as part of site-specific slope repair work. These full closures will take place outside of the busiest summer months. Notice of these full closures and associated detours will be shared when a schedule is finalized.