Storm cleanup on track for Erie Canal

NEW YORK (AP) - Water levels are down on the storied Erie Canal after tropical storms Irene and Lee and there is a lot to be done to clean up the waterway, but stretches of the canal are navigable.

According to the Albany Times-Union , officials hope to see the whole 363-mile waterway open between the Hudson River at Waterford and Lake Erie at Buffalo.

The canal was damaged in the late summer storms. Flood waters carved new paths around the waterway. Floating trees and other debris ripped up sections of the canal's structure. It could take three years to complete the cleanup.

Thruway and Canal Corp. Chief of Staff Tom Ryan says the second storm did more damage because water levels were already high, but officials are working swiftly.