Mr. Gee, Tear Down This Highway

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Here's a scenic shot of the Sheridan Expressway in the South Bronx during the evening "rush," courtesy of the Tri-State Transportation Campaign and the advocates behind the Southern Bronx River Watershed Alliance. Even in the peak direction, reports Tri-State's Steven Higashide, the Moses-era relic is barely used at all:

The gaps in the traffic weren’t quite long enough for a sit-down picnic, which is too bad because the South Bronx is sorely lacking parks and other places for families to recreate and relax. The needs of the area and the light traffic are just two of the many reasons why the Alliance is calling for a teardown of the 1.2-mile Sheridan, and why NYSDOT is studying it. A demapped Sheridan could be replaced not only with open space, but also affordable housing and mixed-use development.

The State DOT is scheduled to decide the fate of this huge piece of riverfront real estate by 2012. Acting Commissioner Stanley Gee was in the news this week for agreeing to expand 1.2 miles of the Staten Island Expressway, under pressure from borough politicians. It's hard to see where any pressure to preserve the Sheridan would come from.