On Monday, a concerned reader sent us a note detailing what seemed to be major road work taking place around the Upper West Side, especially in the upper 60s and lower 70s. The reader asked if we could “report on what seems to be a gigantic repaving project” which began in the middle of the night on Friday, causing a lot of noise while people were trying to sleep.
ILoveTheUpperWestSide reached out to the Department of Transportation, though they were somewhat tight-lipped about why this was happening now.
In regards to scheduling, they shared this link with us. It details road work plans through Saturday, September 11. It appears that today and tomorrow (Sept. 8 – Sept. 9) the DOT will be ‘paving’ on West 68th Street from Central Park West to Amsterdam Ave. The site indicates that this work will be done at ‘night.’
Street signs posted on West 68th Street state that cars will be towed if they’re not removed. No other UWS work is scheduled to take place this week but the above link will keep you abreast of future work in your area. The site notes that schedules are subject to change due to inclement weather or emergencies. All road milling has been scheduled for the nighttime.
A resident of West 69th told us that more than twenty cars were towed on her street during road milling last week. But she emphasized that at the time, she saw no “Tow Away Zone” signs posted, leading to the high number of tows.
For those curious about what ‘road milling’ is, the DOT directed us to this video. If you don’t have time for a 3-and-a-half-minute video, their website describes road milling as “the process of grinding off the top layer of asphalt or surface of a roadway,” something which is “usually done in preparation for paving, although there are exceptions where no milling or only partial milling is needed. The website goes on to say that “the milling process is noisy and may cause discomfort in the affected neighborhood for several days. Much of the work is done at night in order to minimize disruptions to traffic. Although DOT takes steps to minimize the inconvenience, milling requires trucks, special machinery and portable lights. To minimize disruption, machinery is fitted with noise reduction equipment and crews attempt to keep noise to a minimum.”
Maybe someone can figure out why the ramps off the West Side Highway haven’t been paved for over 25 years. This is not an exaggeration, west 79th and 95 on and off ramps haven’t been touched. It’s ridiculous. NYS says the city needs to do it and the City says it’s the States responsibility.