Assemblyman Burke: Skyway Demolition was Ill Conceived; Real Transformation is Restoring Humboldt Parkway and Rebuilding Buffalo’s Long-Lost Electrified Streetcar System

“I was thrilled to see that the organizing efforts of my team and the hard work of the Skyway Club paid off today with the news that the parties leading the charge to tear down the Skyway are backing away from the issue for the time being. I have long held the position that the Skyway – a bridge that was just repaired with $40 million in local, state, and federal funds – should not be torn down, and have been publicly opposed to the plans for several months.

“While the fight is not over, it’s time for us to refocus our energy and resources on projects that will revolutionize the public transit system in our region and reunify communities that were torn apart by ill-advised decision making in the 1950s. From my perspective, that means creating a robust electric streetcar system that will revitalize the City of Buffalo and surrounding communities.

“In March, my Western New York Majority Assembly colleagues and I sent a letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg stating that we ‘adamantly disagree that our priority should be the destruction of the Skyway. Alternatively, funding in the $600 million to $2 billion range could reconnect our fractured community, electrify and upgrade our public transit, clear our air of fumes from internal combustion engines, and restore Humboldt Parkway, the jewel in the crown of our world-renowned Olmsted-designed city.’ I look forward to working closely with my colleagues in government to make this vision a reality.”