RED HOUSE - Construction has officially begun on Interstate 86.
According to a report from the Seneca Nation, contractors have officially begun work on 11.5 miles of the Southern Tier Expressway from the Seneca Allegany Casino exit west to Red House.
However, according to a Seneca Nation representative, much of the "heavy-lifting" work which will cause speed reductions and potential traffic delays will not occur until 2013.
"A lot of what is happening right now is referred to as drainage work," said the representative. "The largest part of the actual road work will be conducted next spring because (construction crews) began so late in the season."
The representative continued by saying that the major portion of the road work which has begun on I-86 is off-territory.
"It is my understanding that there are three creek permits which currently need to be approved and there will be some lane closures," said the representative. "However pretty much right now all that's going on is drainage improvements. In a couple of weeks, what I was informed was that there will be work done on the ramps near the casino exit - I believe they will be replacing that. There won't be any blacktop improvements made until next year. ... Really, the majority of the work will take place next year."
Construction on I-86 comes after a period of disagreements between the state and the Seneca Nation has finally concluded.