NEWS RELEASE DETAILS

DATE/TIME: Friday, March 12th, 2004 / 05:30 PM
SUBJECT:UPDATE – First Avenue Shifting Land Situation

Based on initial results of the engineering studies conducted by Clough Harbor Associates, Mayor Brian Stratton has authorized the following:

* At 5:30 p.m. today, Broadway between Lower Broadway and Weaver Street was re-opened to all traffic.

* This decision was based on information provided by the engineers that indicated that should the hillside give way, it is highly unlikely that debris would reach Broadway. People should be advised that should that information change in the future, it is possible that it would be necessary to again close the same portion of Broadway.

* Tomorrow (Saturday, March 13th) from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., occupants/property owners of the First Avenue houses that had to be evacuated by this incident will be allowed to access their residences for the purpose of removing items.

* Because further engineering studies and evaluations will be required to determine necessary remediation options for the hillside, the evacuation order of these residences shall remain in effect until further notice.

* A chain link fence is being erected behind the residences in order to prevent anyone from getting too close to the edge of the crevice.

* The State of Emergency that was declared on March 8th has been extended through March 18th, with certain revisions (Emergency Orders attached).

The Schenectady Police and Fire Departments will continue to maintain personnel on the scene “around-the-clock.”

Clough Harbor Associates will continue to conduct soil testing throughout this weekend. No other determinations have been made at this time.

Mayor Brian Stratton has issued the following statement:

“While I certainly sympathize with the tremendous burdens and inconvenience these individuals and families have been forced to endure for the past several days, public safety is – and will continue to be – my top priority. A State of Emergency will continue for this situation for an additional five days. The City of Schenectady, in cooperation with county, state and federal authorities, will do everything possible to ensure a safe and rapid solution to this emergency.”

NO OTHER INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE AT THIS TIME.