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Thruway exit at Youngs would ease traffic woes

The answer to Williamsville’s Main Street traffic problem lies on Youngs Road and the Thruway, and much of the region could benefit from the solution. Traffic on Main Street, especially during the morning and evening rush hours, has become quite brutal and relief is being sought. A large percentage of the cars on Main contain people making their way to and from the Youngmann Highway seeking access to downtown Buffalo, the Tonawandas or Niagara Falls. Many of these people reside in East Amherst, Clarence and Lancaster and, unlike those in the Southtowns, have no easy access to the highways linking those communities to Buffalo. The only current options are the Transit Road exit on the Thruway, with its toll and traffic delays at the Williamsville toll barrier, meandering slowly to the Kensington Expressway at the airport, or crawling down Main or Sheridan Drive to the Youngmann.

While money and time are now being spent trying to figure out how to alleviate the Main Street traffic, no one seems to recognize how much putting a Thruway exit at Youngs Road could help. Combine that with moving the Williamsville toll barrier east of Clarence (and forcing the use of high-speed E-ZPass scanners there) as well as perhaps putting another exit at Ransom Road in Clarence, and a large percentage of suburban Western New Yorkers would have much easier access to Buffalo. Commute times from the northern/eastern suburbs to Buffalo could decrease by 10 to 15 minutes. Noise traffic and pollution in the Williamsville toll barrier area would improve dramatically and the traffic on Main in Williamsville would decrease substantially. The time has come for elected officials in Amherst, Clarence, Lancaster and Buffalo to examine and push this idea. It makes sense for all of us.

Matthew Phillips, M.D.

Williamsville