Kingston-Rhinecliff Expressway (US 209 and NY 199)
CONNECTING THE KINGSTON-RHINECLIFF BRIDGE TO THE THRUWAY: When the New York State Bridge Authority completed the Kingston-Rhinecliff Bridge in February 1957, the New York State Department of Public Works (NYSDPW) released contracts for the construction of a four-lane expressway between the western approach of the bridge and the New York State Thruway (I-87 at EXIT 19) in Kingston. The expressway carries the NY 199 from the bridge to the US 9W cloverleaf interchange, and continues with the US 209 designation southwest to its terminus at the NY 28 cloverleaf interchange.
East of the NY 32 modified cloverleaf, NY 199 narrows to two lanes - one lane in each direction - in preparation for crossing the Kingston-Rhinecliff Bridge. South of the NY 28 cloverleaf, US 209 narrows to a two-lane road. Access to the New York State Thruway is provided via NY 28. Additional interchanges are located at Ulster CR 157 (Enterprise Drive) and Ulster CR 42 (Sawkill Road).
The Catskill Expressway, which opened to traffic in 1959, carries approximately 20,000 vehicles per day (AADT).
A POTENTIAL INTERSTATE ALONG US 209: In 1970, the state of New York submitted a proposal to the Federal government to construct a 60.5-mile-long Interstate highway along the US 209 corridor from I-87 in Kingston southwest to I-84 in Port Jervis. The Catskill Expressway was to continue south into New Jersey under that state's plan to use Interstate funds to build the NJ 94 Freeway. Both New York and New Jersey believed that recreation area proposed along the corridor would boost chances that the corridor would be designated as an Interstate However, the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) rejected the proposal, and no Interstate designation was given for the corridor.
SOURCES: "Report on the Status of the Federal-Aid Highway Program," Committee on Public Works, U.S. Senate (1970); New York State Bridge Authority; New York State Department of Transportation; Chris Helms; James Lin; C.C. Slater; Scott Oglesby.