Originally appeared on Channel 4 WIVB on August 25th, 2012

Congestion along Busti Avenue, 4/2012

BUFFALO, NY (WIVB) – Between the residents of Buffalo and the commuters, who will benefit? And who will lose in the battle to secure a peace bridge plaza?

Neighbors on Buffalo’s west side shared their frustrations just one day after the states Lieutenant Governor made a major announcement about land being secured for the bridge plaza.

News 4’s Anthony Congi was there for a news conference Saturday morning where he was able to hear many different reactions and feedback on the situation.

“We are just a human experiment,” those at the conference expressed. That’s how some residents on the west side of Buffalo feel about the proposal to expand the Peace Bridge and a new duty free plaza.

On Friday morning, Lieutenant Governor, Robert Duffy announced what he called a huge step forward by purchasing the old Episcopal Church Home, and that he expects construction to begin immediately.

Duffy says, “There will be no unnecessary delays, hopefully moving as fast as we can.”

Earlier this month, Governor Cuomo talked about the need for expanding the 70 year old bridge. He also said by adding more lanes and getting trucks through the tolls faster, that would alleviate air pollution problems.

Residents here on the west side still aren’t happy. They say the government isn’t being transparent enough and that health concerns aren’t being addressed. There’s no scientific data to back that up and there’s nothing to say how much is allowed here. How much truck traffic is the right amount for this neighborhood that won’t harm us?

Tony Mecca from Buffalo expresses his concern for this issue with some unanswered questions. “What’s to stop them once they cross Busti Avenue from putting in duty free gas pumps, why not build a hotel? If they have the cooperation of the government, the governor and every elected official, they could keep expanding and expanding until it’s virtually impossible to live on the west side of Buffalo.”

View the video broadcast here.

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