Legoland New York Route 17 interchange project is moving forward

GOSHEN. Flyover bridge, access road circle, and exit relocation part of planned construction to ease Legoland New York traffic expected in and around the Town of Goshen.


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  • Orange traffic cones line Route 17 at the Leogland New York construction site (Photo by Nicole Wells)




  • Route 17's Exit 125 will be reconstructed at a further distance from Exit 124 (Photo by Nicole Wells)



"They’re doing well. They’ve been in the business, and they have a lot of experience."
Douglas Bloomfield, Town of Goshen Supervisor


To ease the congestion expected at Legoland New York theme park, parent company Merlin Entertainments recently began work on improvements designed to keep traffic flowing once the park opens next year.

Matt Besterman, public relations manager, said work began on the Route 17 interchange project around mid-May and is expected to be completed by the end of the year.

He said Merlin is putting $350 million into the theme park before it opens, with $40 million of that sum earmarked for transportation improvements.

A key component of the project is the construction of a new Exit 125 on Route 17, which will allow visitors to bypass local streets and enter directly into the park. Besterman said the new exit will also aid in the eventual conversion of Route 17 to Interstate 86. Exit 125 is too close to Exit 124 to meet interstate standards, and when reconstructed will be moved further away.

The company is also building a traffic circle that will conduct visitors to the access road for the park and a flyover bridge for Route 17.

Stretching more than 3,000 feet, the access road will prevent traffic from backing up onto the highway, Besterman said.

The new bridge will provide more direct access to the theme park from other institutions on Harriman Drive, including the Glen Arden retirement community and the Orange-Ulster Board of Cooperative Educational Services, according to a Legoland New York press release.

Another way Merlin Entertainments plans to keep theme park traffic from snarling Route 17 is by having guests pay for parking on their way out instead of on their way in.

Although work is permitted on the project seven days a week, there will be no lane closures during morning or evening rush hours, in keeping with state Department of Transportation requirements, Besterman said. That means all lanes on Route 17 will be open from 6:30 to 9 a.m. and from 2:30 to 7 p.m. All lanes will also be open on Route 17M, Harriman Drive, and South Street from 6:30 to 8 a.m. and from 4 to 6 p.m.

Town of Goshen Supervisor Douglas Bloomfield said working with Legoland has been a positive experience.

"They’re doing well," he said. “They’ve been in the business, and they have a lot of experience."

Merlin Entertainments currently operates eight Legoland theme parks around the world. Legoland New York will be the ninth, and the third one in the United States.

Servidone Construction, which handled the reconstruction of Exit 122 near Orange Regional Medical Center, is acting as the contractor for the Route 17 interchange project, Besterman said.





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