WARREN, Pennsylvania – The Warren County Board of Commissioners met with Chautauqua County Executive, George Borrello, to discuss a resolution in support of the North/South Corridor project which would develop and expand PA Route 62 and NY Route 60 in order to provide greater transportation connectivity between the two regions.
Commissioner Kafferlin graciously introduced Mr. Borrello, “As far as I know it’s been a very long time since an official from Chautauqua County has visited one of our meetings. Commissioner Eggleston I believe is the first in recent memory to go up to Chautauqua County.”
He continued by expressing the need for collaboration. “We’ve collaborated with our surrounding Pennsylvania counties quite a bit, especially Erie, Forest and McKean, but Chautauqua has one of the largest contiguous land areas on our border and we barely communicate. We really should be talking a lot more.”
“The North/South Corridor is really critical for the economic vitality of Warren County, so it is my pleasure to welcome you and give you the floor to discuss this issue,” he concluded.
Mr. Borrello was also pleased with the meeting saying, “Thank you for allowing me to speak today, and I’d like to especially thank Commissioner Eggleston for facilitating this and visiting us up in Jamestown to talk about this program we are looking to advance.”
“This is part of our region,” he continued, “as far as I am concerned, despite the invisible state line between us. Although the State of New York and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania are very different, our Counties share many of the same interests and concerns.”
Commissioner Eggleston, along with County Planning Director, Dan Glotz, had met previously with Mr. Borrello’s executive team to discuss the possibility of working together to generate plans for greater investment in Routes 62 and 60. The concept was based on a rough plan discussed over a decade ago when planners from Chautauqua and Warren County met to lobby for developments on the same roadways. Eggleston and Glotz also shared the results of the Freight Study conducted by the Northwest Commission in the previous year which showed Warren’s dominance in freight traffic in the region. Mr. Borrello referenced the previous discussions in his speech.
“We have a lot of challenges but also have a lot of shared goals. We want to protect our natural resources, grow our economies, and increase tourism and this North/South Corridor and the expansion of Route 62, which turns into Route 60 in New York State, is a critical component of that. We’ve been talking about this for a long time, and it’s time to give this a ‘full court press’ because it’s so important for our survival.”
Mr. Borrello continued to illustrate the region’s needs saying, “Warren County is a leader in freight exports in the region and that’s fantastic. Chautauqua County has a lot of industry that relies on safe and accessible transportation routes to move products at an affordable rate. Also, we want to get people more efficiently from ‘point A’ to “point B”. If we want to get people from Dunkirk down to the Allegheny National Forest, that should be a safe and easy trip. We’d also like to get more people up to experience Chautauqua, Chautauqua Lake, and the National Comedy Center opening up this summer which will be a world class attraction. We want to increase commerce and connectivity between our two regions.”
In conclusion, all members of the discussion agreed that collaboration and working as a group was key. Mr. Borrello stated, “If we come together, across state lines, and tell our legislators that this is important to us, it will have a much bigger impact. I applaud you for picking this ball up and running with it and I am grateful for the opportunity to speak here today and if we work together, we will make this happen.”
Commissioner Eggleston added “I would like to thank George Borello for coming here today and sharing this message in an effort to create greater collaboration between our two communities. I think this project is a first step to greater communication and collaboration between Chautauqua and Warren County. We have so many shared interests and it makes sense for us to find ways to work together for our common good.”
After the County Executive finished his speech and the general discussion concluded, the Warren County Commissioners approved unanimously a resolution in support of the North/South Corridor concept as well as the join governmental efforts to secure funding for a planning study to develop the Corridor.
A summary document and the resolution are available for download on the Warren County website. Any questions for the Commissioners Office regarding this news story may be directed to Pam Matve, Chief Clerk, by phone at 814-728-3402 or by email at email@example.com.
Download draft of North/South Corridor Resolution: