Every few weeks, at the intersection of Hunts Point Avenue and Bruckner Boulevard, Hunts Point resident Carl Van Putten, 80, witnesses an accident. Putten says the Sheridan Expressway is to blame.
The South Bronx has some of the highest asthma rates in the country, according to the South Bronx Environmental Health and Policy Study. Residents point to the Sheridan as a major reason for the high asthma rates as well.
The 1.2-mile highway, built by Robert Moses in the early 1960s, has long been criticized by South Bronx residents for its impact on the community and its lack of effectiveness as a method of transportation. As a result, the Southern Bronx River Watershed Alliance (SBRWA), a coalition of citywide and community-based organizations, has been advocating for years for the removal of the highway.
Last May, the Bloomberg administration eliminated the option of completely removing the Sheridan Expressway, saying there were “fatal flaws” in the removal plan with regard to local street traffic, travel time, intersection performance and truck re-routing.
But last month, after the completion of a two-year, $1.5 million study, the city announced a series of recommendations that would be sent to the state to improve the transportation network and the neighborhoods impacted by the Sheridan footprint.