Plans to overhaul parts of two major highways in the Brass City are now on the back burner.
On Wednesday, Gov. Dannel Malloy announced the state is suspending billions of dollars worth of transportation projects, including work on the Waterbury Mixmaster.
The governor says the Mixmaster is not just beyond capacity, but beyond its expected lifespan, one that's been extended.
Driving a truck for FW Webb based out of Waterbury, Andres Rivera knows all about the Mixmaster, and how sometimes getting through the Brass City on the Route 8 and I-84 interchange can be bumper to bumper.
"During certain times of the day, it gets really bad, like around rush hour, 3 to 5 its gets real bad,” Rivera said.
However, Malloy said $4.3 billion in transportation projects are being postponed indefinitely, until the state comes up with new revenue for its Special Transportation Fund. The Mixmaster project is included.
According to the Department of Transportation, the Mixmaster sees about 150,000 cars per day, which is three times the amount it first carried when it was built in the 1960s.
State officials argued the wear and tear had caught up with the interchange and a massive overhaul was long overdue.
"When Massachusetts and New York and Rhode Island and New Jersey, all of our main competitors, were investing in transportation, Connecticut whistled by the cemetery,” Malloy said on Wednesday.
The project, which was still years away, was expected to cost billions.
Last spring, the Department of Transportation’s commissioner added that addition to replacing the Mixmaster down the road, they'd needed to do immediate rehab, repairing 10 bridges that are part of the facility.
While the state was years away from the replacing the actual Mixmaster, that repair work that was mentioned, was supposed to start this year.
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