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April 8, 2016

Niskayuna School Transportation Department planning for Rexford Bridge Project

In light of the upcoming work to replace the Rexford Bridge, the Niskayuna Central School District is sharing information about how it is preparing for potential impacts on student transportation.

Earlier this year, state Department of Transportation officials indicated to the district that they did not foresee major traffic delays resulting from the project. Yet, the district is taking the steps that it can to be as prepared as possible.

  • School officials will monitor traffic patterns closely and maintain communication with bridge construction management.
  • The district is exploring the potential for alternate routes of travel. However, work that is also taking place in the Freeman's Bridge Road-Erie Boulevard corridor means that traffic may also be backed up on this popular alternate route. The Transportation Department will be ready to make those adjustments that are feasible.
  • The district is also considering how bus routes could be split, if needed. It will be prepared to house some buses in the Glencliff area next year to help get students to and from school if traffic conditions warrant. For this reason, the district is planning to retain the full-size buses that are scheduled for replacement at the end of the current year.

If there are traffic impacts, routes most likely to be affected are those that bring students who live on the Niskayuna side of the Mohawk River to and from Glencliff and those that transport middle and high school students who live on the Rexford/Alplaus side of the river.

However, because of the district's three-tiered transportation system, in which a driver's route often includes high school, elementary, and middle school pick-ups and drop-offs, delays in one run can impact others.

District officials anticipate that the utilization of alternate routes or additional buses is more likely to be needed next fall than this spring. Any changes to student transportation schedules will be clearly communicated to parents.

At the same time, it's important to note that school buses face the same traffic conditions as other motorists. As the work progresses, minor delays that occur may not necessarily warrant a call to the Transportation Department.

The replacement of the Rexford Bridge is a significant project in our school community. We will continue to update our families as needed, and thank you in advance for your understanding and patience.