Causeway Traffic Pattern Remains Until Spring

Oct 18, 2017
Photo by: Ryan Morrill

The new traffic pattern on the Causeway is expected to stay for most of the off-season, allowing for a new stage of the $350 million Route 72/Manahawkin Bay Bridge construction project overseen by the state Department of Transportation.

Implemented last week, the traffic shift reduces traffic from two lanes in each direction to one lane in each direction on the south side of the Hilliards Thorofare Bridge, according to Dan Triana, a public information officer for the DOT. The change, he said, allows for the rehabilitation of the north side of the bridge.

“The traffic shift is expected to remain in place until spring 2018 when the bridge will reopen to two lanes of traffic in each direction,” he said, noting there is a wide load limitation in place at the bridge, requiring a local police escort for any vehicle exceeding the lane limitation. “Whenever there is a shift in traffic patterns due to construction, it takes time for motorists to get accustomed to the change. Motorists are encouraged to check NJDOT’s traffic information website 511.org for construction updates.”

The target completion date for the entire undertaking is spring 2020, but the exact ending date of the extensive project will come down to weather and other outside influences. In the end, the 3-mile stretch connecting the mainland, Stafford Township, to Long Beach Island will entail one bridge to carry traffic west, or off the Island, and another bridge to flow eastward. The new bridge is 2,400 feet long with a vertical clearance of 55 feet above Manahawkin Bay.

The finished project will also include bicycle lanes, with wider outside shoulders on the twin Manahawkin Bay bridges, and 6-foot bike lanes on the three trestle bridges.  —G.G.S.

 

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