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Ocean, Monmouth Getting Parkway Safety, Exit Reconstruction Projects Worth $330 Million

Work includes widening shoulders from mile markers 83 to 99

The New Jersey Turnpike Authority's Board of Commissioners has approved construction contracts worth $330.3 million for a project that will restore full-width shoulders and make other safety improvements of a 16-mile stretch roadway in Ocean and Monmouth counties.

The project will start at mile marker marker 99.5. Construction will begin this fall and is scheduled to be completed in 2014.

“There is no better use for our capital dollars than projects like this one that make our roads safer,” Transportation Commissioner James Simpson said in a prepared statement. “When the project is complete, a section of the Parkway with narrow shoulders, narrow travel lanes and a history of accidents will be built to modern design and safety standards. Police, fire and EMS vehicles will be better able to access accident scenes.”

Simpson, who also serves as chairman of the Turnpike Authority Board of Commissioners, said the wider lanes will also give drivers who lose control of their vehicles more room to regain control without striking a tree or going down an embankment.

A 2007 highway safety assessment identified six high-priority areas on the Parkway; four of the areas are in the 16-mile project zone. Between 2000 and 2007, there were 9,000 accidents in the area, including 63 fatal accidents.

In response to the safety assessment, the speed limit was lowered from 65 to 55 mph, a series of interim safety measures was adopted and preliminary engineering on the shoulder-widening project was begun.

“It's great news the engineering and permitting are done and this important project is about to get underway,” Turnpike Authority Commissioner Ray Pocino said. “This project will create jobs and improve safety on the Parkway. It's a smart investment in New Jersey's future.”

The four construction contracts awarded for the project are as follows:

The George Harms Construction Co. Inc. of Howell was awarded a $84.3 million contract to restore the shoulders, reconstruct bridges and make other safety improvements between mile posts 83.5 and 88.5 in Toms River and Lakewood townships. The Harms bid was the lowest of seven submitted.

Midlantic Construction LLC of Barnegat was awarded a $75 million contract to restore the shoulders, reconstruct bridges and make other safety improvements between mileposts 90.5 and 93.5 in Lakewood and Brick townships. Midlantic submitted the lowest of five bids.

Northeast Remsco Construction Inc of Farmingdale was awarded a $100.1 million contract to restore the shoulders, reconstruct bridges and make other safety improvements between mileposts 93.5 and 99.5 in Brick and Wall townships. The company's bid was the lowest of six submitted.

Earle Asphalt Co. of Farmingdale was awarded a $70.1 million contract to restore the shoulders and make other safety improvements between mileposts 88.5 and 90.5 in Lakewood township and to build service roads and interchange ramps at interchange 88 and 89 to provide full access to and from the northbound and southbound Parkway from both interchanges. The company's bid was the lowest of eight submitted.

“Lives will be saved because of this project,” Simpson said.

Michele Spector April 23, 2013 at 12:44 AM
Here is my link on facebook for comments on the bulldozing, noise, pollution, devalued properties, etc. as a result of the parkway widening: https://www.facebook.com/SoundBarrierWallForEvergreen
Michele Spector April 23, 2013 at 12:47 AM
I know I spoke to an engineer at the Highway Authority, I don't think I got any kind of satisfaction from that. I am meeting with the Brick Senator's chief of staff with some residents in our community on May 1st. Here is my link with videos of the reality of our neighborhood now. https://www.facebook.com/SoundBarrierWallForEvergreen
Michele Spector April 24, 2013 at 01:30 AM
According to the minutes I read from that meeting, after everyone made their objections known, they Highway Authority informed everyone that because they are putting in special pavement which cuts the decibel level (albeit slightly) and; because they are not adding in a lane, but merely putting the shoulder back in, it does not qualify for a barrier wall. What they didn't say was that they did add a lane a few years back by using the shoulder. Putting the shoulder back in, after the fact, does not mean that a lane wasn't added in. See what it means for Evergreen Woods Condo Community who have tried to get some kind of noise mitigation 2 1/2 years before this happened and have been denied. https://www.facebook.com/SoundBarrierWallForEvergreen?ref=hl
Michele Spector April 25, 2013 at 02:28 AM
I am meeting with Sen. Holzapfel's chief of staff with some neighbors from Evergreen Woods on May 1st at 10 am. his legislative office on 852 highway 70. I am bringing video I shot highlighting what it is like for us, which I have been posting on a special facebook page. I am collecting signatures now. Please feel free to post any pics, videos, or comments on the page: https://www.facebook.com/SoundBarrierWallForEvergreen?ref=tn_tnmn I need to get the name of the project, Environmental Impact Statement, Scope of the Job, Specifications for bid, and any considerations for light and sound pollution and air quality. I got the name of a Brick engineer. I will post results on the facebook page.
Michele Spector April 27, 2013 at 03:48 AM
I just found out from someone in Brick municipal complex that they cut sooo many more trees then they were supposed to. Because of this screw up they have proposed some new plans to fix this. We are having meeting at Evergreen Woods assn tuesday night, May 30th. I will have to confirm it is definitely on. I was also told that our lawyer has what they are proposing to do. I believe Senator Holzapfel's office does too. We are meeting him on May 1st. After I meet with his chief of staff I am meeting the archivist at the Brick Municipal to look at the project plans. I'll let you know how that goes.

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