A $62 million project is forcing business owners and residents to move. That project is expected to help the flow of traffic and cause fewer headaches and commuters.
The Utica North-South Arterial Project is set to begin in two years, yet it comes at a cost.
Construction and demolition is expected in 2013 as the first phase of the Arterial Project will begin to take shape.
The anticipated face-lift will be divided into three phases and is expected to be complete in the next six years.
Tony Ilacqua, a spokesperson for the Department of Transportation says this project is a must.
"The objective of the project is to eliminate both the structural and geometric deficiencies of the existing viaduct and to improve safety for motorists and for pedestrians and bicyclists in the area," said Ilacqua.
The viaduct or the bridge located between Court Street and Oriskany Boulevard is 50 years old and is in very poor condition. Tony says the project area is also a high accident location.
But, the large project comes with a price.
Tony says about 85 occupants will be forced to relocate their business or find homes all due to eminent domain.
"We've met with every property owner that's going to be affected and we're in the process of meeting all the occupants of the properties," says Ilacqua.
Tony says they will continue to work with the occupants and they will receive relocation benefits.
Ben Murabito owns two properties that will have to relocate. He, however, says relocating does not bother him.
"I don't really mind too much in a sense because it's going to improve the safety of pedestrians because there have been accidents. I just hope everybody gets compensated in the right matter," said Murabito.
Yet, he says relocating might be a challenge.
"I have to either relocate or trying to find another building to buy which is pretty hard to find anything with that type of traffic pattern right now and that keeps me afloat with all that traffic," said Murabito.
Murabito also says the tenants living in one of his properties are not too happy.
He says most of the tenants living there are senior citizens and are having a hard time finding places to accommodate their pets.
There will be a public hearing tomorrow at the State Office Building from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. for the community to ask questions and voice concerns.