Mahoney: ‘I like (an I-81 tunnel) … because it satisfies everybody’

Onondaga County Executive Joanie Mahoney told reporters on Wednesday that she is supportive of a hybrid tunnel option for rebuilding Interstate 81 in Syracuse.

“I like it in theory because it satisfies everybody,” she said, according to “You get the community grid and you get the high speed access.”

Numerous polls and surveys in recent years have shown that a majority of Central New Yorkers are supportive of maintaining high-speed access into and through Syracuse, opposing the so-called community grid network of city streets.

While surface-level streets could easily be incorporated into a design that also keeps through-traffic moving at high speeds to their destinations (the hybrid option), it is clear that a community grid-only option would mire the city in gridlock. An independent study commissioned by Save 81 showed that a community grid would wreak havoc on commute times, be detrimental to the environment and negatively impact the region’s economy.