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Policy Statement



The “Moving People Transportation Coalition” is committed to participate actively in our community’s discussion of “I-81 Opportunities.” We will work with all stakeholders in finding solutions that unite the community around the common good and lessen the impact of special interests.


Our Vision is a sustainable regional transportation system that focuses on moving people, not cars. 


The “Moving People Transportation Coalition” uses social justice principles to guide our search for the best possible outcomes.  These principles include respect for neighborhoods, community consensus-building, environmental quality, accessibility, safety, health promotion and economic empowerment.



Given our vision, and our commitment to social justice, our stance is that all solutions must: 


  • Be based on a fact driven decision-making process for choosing the replacement alternative for the current I-81 viaduct that uses the best practices in community planning and incorporates urban design strategies that have proven successful in similar projects across the country.


  • Involve a fully transparent public outreach process by the DOT during the Environmental Impact Study [EIS] that uses a matrix to evaluate each alternative by applying specific criteria for the project’s goals and objectives. This process should incorporate a full examination of the 17 EIS subject areas identified by DOT and a cost benefit analysis that compares construction and maintenance cost to the return on investment.


  • Include the integrated design of various transportation modes that decreases reliance on cars.  This will include transit elements such as expanded bus routes, light rail, bus rapid transit, electric buses, and other innovations. Park & ride options would need major expansion in such transit oriented development.


  • Place a high value on the preservation of neighborhoods and avoid the devastating effects caused by the destruction of the 15th Ward and the West Street arterial neighborhood.


  • Promote the health and welfare of residents of impacted areas who should not be subjected to another 50 years of poor air quality, health & safety risks and excessive noise.


  • Provide new opportunities for mixed use and mixed income housing in the areas with significant improvements in the livability for all. 


  • Utilize priority hiring strategies by contractors of projects to provide jobs for residents of Syracuse and Onondaga County during and after construction.


  • Enhance the livability, sustainability and economic vitality of the Greater Syracuse area as well as improve the transportation infrastructure.


At this stage in the process, our collective judgment is that a street level alternative is the best approach for producing the outcomes listed above. We also find that any street level alternative would be enhanced by rerouting through traffic around downtown using a combination

of I-481 and I-690 to preserve access to important social and economic resources north of downtown.


Organizations or individuals wishing to “sign-on” to this statement may do so by emailing your contact information to or by filling out the form below:





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