I grew up in Kaisertown. I watched the Niagara Section of the Thruway built right before my eyes. The Ogden toll barrier was in sight of our front porch.
That toll barrier collected millions of dollars from drivers over a period of more than fifty years. It slowed traffic pouring into the city. What a crazy idea – charging people in a mid-sized metropolitan area a fee to enter the central city.
That barrier, of course had a sister location along the Niagara River, near Breckenridge. That was so that area residents coming into the central city from the north towns could also pay to enter. There was no fee to leave the city.
A few years ago those barriers came down after an aggressive campaign by local political and business leaders. Traffic finally, after more than fifty years, flowed freely into Buffalo. Continue reading