ITHACA, N.Y. — Expect heavy traffic delays if traveling East State Street soon. An upcoming sewer main project will reduce part of East State Street to one lane, and the project is expected to go until October.

Construction is tentatively expected to begin on “Stage 1” of the project April 30 between the “tuning fork” — where East State Street branches off to Seneca Way — on East State Street and Stewart Avenue. Crews will begin saw cutting pavement as part of a sewer replacement project.

During the project, East State Street will be reduced to a single lane controlled by one-way traffic lights, the City of Ithaca says. There will be signals at the eastbound East Green Street turning lane at the tuning fork and on the westbound lane between Schuyler Place and Stewart Avenue. Heavy delays are expected on East State Street.

Schuyler Place will also be closed to through traffic during Stage 1 work.

The following detours will be in place:

  • From E. Green Street heading eastbound onto East State Street – Will be controlled with a one-way traffic light.
  • From East State Street, heading westbound into City – Will be controlled with a one-way traffic light.
  • Schuyler Place – Will be closed to thru traffic. Eastbound vehicles heading along Buffalo will be directed past Schuyler Pl to Stewart Avenue. Westbound traffic heading along Buffalo will be directed past Schuyler Pl to Aurora Street.
  • From Route 96/Aurora Street/The Commons area – State Street will be closed to thru traffic inside the Tuning Fork between East Green Street and Seneca Way. Traffic heading north bound into the City who then turn eastward onto the 300 block of State Street will be diverted northward onto Seneca Way.

Stage 1 of the project is expected to be complete by May 25. However the full project will be completed around Oct. 15, the city says.

Featured image: East State Street heading to the Ithaca Commons. (Kelsey O’Connor/The Ithaca Voice)

Kelsey O'Connor

Kelsey O'Connor is the managing editor for the Ithaca Voice. Questions? Story tips? Contact her at and follow her on Twitter @bykelseyoconnor.