Lawmakers from across the North Country are growing increasingly anxious over the condition of the state's public infrastructure.
From Lake Placid to Willsboro, highly utilized state highways are looking more like decrepit back country roads.
But as the state continues to climb out of its fiscal mess, it's looking less likely that roads and bridges will get the sort of attention they need in order to keep the public safe and to keep tourists driving to the area.
In Wilmington, town Supervisor Randy Preston says the old stone bridge is now on a state watch list.
The bridge was built in 1935 using granite from a nearby quarry - the same granite workers used to construct the Whiteface Veterans Memorial Highway.
But state inspectors recently discovered that the stone bridge consists of the same cement mixture that led transportation officials to condemn the old Crown Point bridge.
"Probably three and a half weeks ago now, they showed up and they actually did some core samples and it was like, 'Uh oh,' then they realized it's in a serious state of disrepair," Preston said. "And I got the phone call that there's no fix."
Preston says the bridge must be replaced altogether - a large-scale repair project won't do the trick.
"But there's no money to replace it - maybe five years from now," he said. "My biggest fear is, they're gonna come in next year and continue with their inspection because now it's on the watch list, so to speak, and all of a sudden we're going to have another Crown Point situation."
Wilmington's problems don't stop there. Preston says the town is anticipating a five-year delay before the state steps in to take care of the stone bridge - in the meantime, large truck traffic is being detoured onto smaller town roads.
That means massive 18-wheelers will be rumbling down residential neighborhoods, places where people are walking their dogs, places where children are playing.
And it also means five years of heavy trucks chewing up town roads.
Preston says he's worried the state could show up next year and close the bridge down to all forms of traffic.
"For Wilmington, it will be as devastating if this bridge gets closed as it was for the people in the surrounding area of the Crown Point bridge," he said. "It's on a smaller scale, but it's not on a smaller scale when you live here and this is a tourist town and this bridge is a huge attraction. The answer that there's no money to fix anything, I just don't understand the logic of that."
North Elba Supervisor Roby Politi understands Wilmington's situation all too well.
Beginning last year, Politi teamed up with political leaders from across the Tri-Lakes to pressure the state into fixing the stretch of state Route 86 that extends from Saranac Lake to Jay.
The roads are especially bad between Saranac Lake and Lake Placid - the most heavily-traveled eight miles of highway inside the Blue Line.
Politi says he initiated conversations with Mary Ivey of DOT Region 1 in 2010. The response then was the same as it is now - there's just no money.
"Nothing was going to get done," Politi said. "That was about a year ago, and it's just gotten worse."
The concerns surrounding state Route 86 go far beyond a few small potholes - entire chunks of highway are scarred along the shoulder, forcing vehicles to hug tight to the center line.
That's not to say the potholes on Route 86 aren't a problem. The potholes themselves can be up to two feet wide and five inches deep in many places.
Bob Bevilacqua owns Carcuzzi, an auto repair shop in Saranac Lake. He says his mechanics work on countless vehicles that have fallen victim to deteriorating roadways.
He notes that for those motorists who commute back and forth daily between Saranac Lake and Lake Placid, Route 86 can take a heavy toll financially.
"Anytime you're going down the road and your tire or suspension has an immediate shock like that, the biggest problem you can have is you'll cut a belt in the tire, and then the tire starts to curl and you get a vibration in your car and you have to replace the tire," Bevilacqua said. "If you're driving a four-wheel drive vehicle, it's not just one tire; you have to replace all four. That's quite an expense, ya know?"
In the last few years alone, Bevilacqua, also a member of the Harrietstown Town Council, says he's noticed an uptick in repairs that can be directly attributed to bruising highways.
"I know we've been doing a lot more repairs on coil springs, struts, stabilizer links, all those types of repairs - we've been doing more of those the last couple years than we have in the past," he said. "I don't think it's because the components are being made cheaper. It's because the roads are in such horrible shape."
And while shelling out dollars for car repairs is no fun, the real concern is driver safety, Bevilacqua notes.
"When you're driving down the road, you have to be so conscious of where the potholes are, you're looking right in front of the car, you're not looking down the road like you normally would be," he said. "Your attention, it's like driving while talking on a cell phone, you aren't paying attention to everything going on around you."
Roby Politi has expressed those safety concerns to anyone who will listen - including Major Richard Smith, commander of New York State Police Troop B, headquartered in Ray Brook.
"He also has contacted DOT, as I have contacted DOT, to put them on notice that the road system here is dangerous, it needs to be attended to," Politi said. "I don't want to wait - I don't think any of us wants to wait - for an accident, a fatality, to occur and then say, 'Jeesh, we should have taken care of this.'"
But the DOT isn't plugging its ears and turning a blind eye on people like Politi or Major Smith. Carol Breen is spokeswoman for DOT Region 1, which covers a broad geographical area from Schenectady to Lake Placid.
"We do know that Route 86 is in poor condition - it's declining," she said. "But we also only have a certain amount of funding to spend on paving and reconstructing roads."
Breen admits that the longer DOT takes to repair roads like Route 86, the more money it costs the state.
"With our limited funding, we have priority roads, and those are obviously the more high volume roads like the interstate," she said. "Keeping them in a state of good repair is most important, and then we get to the other roads as we can."
Most New Yorkers are aware of the fiscal reality the state is facing when it comes to infrastructure - there's a lot of work to do, and not much money to do it with.
Politi says the disrepair will soon go beyond simply being an issue of driver safety.
"It's time that we recognize that it's not only a health and safety issue, but it's also an issue for tourism in the area," he said.
Betty Little chairs the state Senate's tourism committee. She says officials like Politi are right to be upset about the lack of action on infrastructure projects.
She notes that while DOT is left prioritizing which projects to undertake, the state itself is being careless with its own priorities.
"We have to have our priorities," she said. "It is a priority to buy up the land in the Adirondack Park? We don't think so, because the sustainability of our communities is at stake. We have so much state land in each and every town - it's great to have it and it makes the Adirondacks attractive, but I think we've reached a point where enough is enough."
Politi, Little, and others say conservation easements for recreational opportunities are meaningless if tourists don't feel safe coming to the Park.
At the end of the day, there doesn't appear to be a simple fix to the growing infrastructure mess inside the Park and across New York.
But at least one town supervisor has been successful in getting the state to fix a much-neglected highway. Two years ago, the state completed a major reconstruction of state Route 73 along the Cascade Pass, in between Lake Placid and Keene.
Keene Supervisor Bill Ferebee notes that it was pressure from state police and organizers of the Ironman triathlon that eventually triggered the project.
"I was involved at that time and of course it looks bad to our constituency because the focus at that time was to improve the roads and the reasoning was for the safety of Ironman," he said. "But the focus needs to be for the safety of everyone, not just dedicated to a sporting event."
Betty Little agrees with Ferebee, but she says using the Ironman race to influence the DOT may be the best tactic at this point.
Whatever happens, the anxiety is there among local officials and state lawmakers as they watch roads and bridges crumble around them.