92 EIS nearly ready
By: Joseph Harvie, Staff Writer
South Brunswick Post, 07/21/2005
Army Corps eyes summer release.
The final Environmental Impact
Statement on Route 92 is expected to be unveiled sometime this summer,
according to Army Corps of Engineers
Richard Tomer, chief of the Regulatory Branch of the Army Corps of
Engineers, said Tuesday the agency is expected
to issue the final EIS by the end of the summer, at which time
the public will have an opportunity to speak on the document.
Summer ends Sept. 20.
Route 92 is a 6.7-mile limited access toll road that is proposed to run
from New Jersey Turnpike Exit 8A to Route 1 at Ridge Road.
The Army Corps is reviewing the road
because state and federal environmental agencies could not agree on
whether permits should be issued. The state Department of Environmental
Protection issued permits, but the federal Environmental Protection
Agency rejected them, saying other, less intrusive alternatives exist.
The Army Corps released a draft version of the EIS in April 2004 and in
May of that year held a public hearing on the document. At that time 87
percent, 62 of 71, of those who spoke opposed the highway, according to
a transcript of the May 2004 hearing.
Mr. Tomer said the Army Corps is
waiting for comments from other environmental agencies that have
been looking at a preliminary version of the final EIS.
"We are at the end of that process and getting comment in from those
agencies," Mr. Tomer said. "We will evaluate those comments and
determine whether we want to make any changes to the preliminary
version or not and that will lead to a final version of the EIS."
At the May 2004 public hearing, many
of those who opposed the highway said they were upset that certain
issues were not included in the draft EIS. Kingston residents said they were upset
that traffic in the village was not included in the study. Others were concerned that Route 522 was
not included in the study.
Mr. Tomer said all of the public's concerns will be answered in the
final draft of the EIS.
"All of the concerns raised, whether they were raised by letters or at
the hearing, will be addressed in the EIS," Mr. Tomer said.