Capitalize Albany Issues Request For Proposals Regarding Design and Engineering Of Albany Skyway Project

December 8, 2017

Read The Announcement Press Release Here

With support from Governor Cuomo’s Regional Economic Development Council initiative and New York State, Capitalize Albany Corporation issued a request for proposals to kick off the Albany Skyway project. The Corporation is seeking respondents to complete initial design and engineering of a linear park on an underutilized off-ramp of I-787. The selected respondents will conduct a scope of work that includes a site assessment and feasibility study, traffic impact study, planning and preliminary design work and other related activities in 2018. The RFP was posted on the Corporation’s website December 7 and responses are due January 12 by 5 p.m. The RFP can be found here

Capitalize Albany Corporation’s Round VI awarded CFA project is the first phase of a multi-phase project that will ultimately result in the conversion of the I-787 northbound exit ramp from Quay Street to Clinton Avenue—into the Region’s first and only highline park—the Albany Skyway. The Impact Downtown strategy found that the current exit ramp is underutilized, redundant to other exits, and could offer more to the City, and Region. Phase I work is anticipated to take four to six months following execution of contracts. 

The completed conversion of the exit ramp would transform the underutilized infrastructure into a landscaped multi-use connection, from downtown Albany and surrounding neighborhoods including Arbor Hill and Sheridan Hollow, to the Corning Riverfront Park. Upon conversion—the former ramp would serve as a fully ADA compliant promenade, bike route and linear park making valuable connections to the Hudson River—dramatically increasing accessibility to both downtown and the waterfront. In addition to serving as a waterfront connection, the Skyway would be an amenity for Albany’s downtown neighborhoods, creating an experience for its users and becoming a regional destination.

The project’s sustainability impact will be an additional benefit. Once completed, the project would function much like a green roof, absorbing, filtering and diverting storm runoff that would otherwise enter the City’s combined sewers and eventually the Hudson.

The property is owned by New York State Department of Transportation. Capitalize Albany is coordinating with NYSDOT and received a commitment to work with the Corporation. After evaluation of Phase 1 materials it will continue to work with the Corporation and the City of Albany to provide permanent ownership or occupancy of the ramp to facilitate the construction and maintenance phases. The completion of the Albany Skyway’s Phase 1 will allow for the progression into final design, Phase II.

The Impact Downtown Albany strategic plan, the City’s comprehensive plan, LWRP and waterfront master plan show demand for, and an economic need to increase connections from downtown to the waterfront. Currently, I-787 presents an imposing barrier disassociating downtown and surrounding neighborhoods from the river.