Long an infrastructure dream, Governor Andrew Cuomo Tuesday rekindled discussion on the possibility of building a tunnel across the Long Island Sound to connect Long Island with either Westchester or Connecticut.
“I want to do a really thorough feasibility study,” Cuomo said, according to The Journal News. “I think we can build a tunnel from Long Island to either the Bronx, Westchester, or Connecticut. It will shave hours and hours from a commutation standpoint.”
Cuomo said he wants to commit $5 million in state funds to the study.
The proposal for the study funding was listed among several goals for 2016 aimed at improving downstate infrastructure Cuomo’s office released Tuesday.
Whether by bridge or tunnel, the idea to connect Long Island to Westchester or points further north has been around for decades. The idea was championed at various times by Governor Nelson Rockefeller and city planner Robert Moses. The idea even was a plot point in season two of the Netflix hit House of Cards. The most recent proposal, from 2008, called for a 16-mile tunnel to be built from Oyster Bay to Rye. The project would have created the longest highway tunnel in the world and cost an estimated $10 billion. Developer Vincent Polimeni—who died in 2013—wanted to privately fund the construction and recoup costs through charging drivers $25 each way and selling advertising in the tunnel.
Asked if this proposal, too, was a “pipe dream,” Cuomo emphasized the need for bold ideas, according to The Journal News.
“We have to think bold,” Cuomo said. “We have to think big. We can do it. We are New Yorkers—there’s nothing we can’t do.”