Town bonds for Rte. 522 extension

Staff Writer
North-South Brunswick Sentinel, Dec. 15, 2005

SOUTH BRUNSWICK -- In a move aimed at easing truck traffic in town, the Township Council passed a bond ordinance Tuesday to help finance the extension of Route 522.

The move brings the township closer to constructing Route 522-1A, which will run from the intersection of routes 522 and 130, through a section of warehouses, and reconnect with Ridge Road just west of the turnpike. The total cost of the road is expected to be $8 million, of which $400,000 shall be paid as a down payment.

Township Manager Matt Wakins hopes that the road will be completed within 2006, and said that some lanes on 522 will be closed during the day while construction goes on. Part of the costs will be paid for by the warehouse developers who benefit from this road, which will allow trucks easier access to their area, and all the funds laid out by South Brunswick will be reimbursed by Middlesex County because Route 522 is a county road.

Route 522-1A, the township’s answer to the controversial Route 92, which recently had its funding transferred by the state to a turnpike widening project, was designed primarily to relieve truck traffic. Right now, trucks coming off major highways and on to Ridge Road will sometimes get lost and keep going on 522, where they eventually end up in Dayton.

Officials hope the new road will be a more direct route through the warehouses and keep the trucks out of the residential areas. There will also be small side streets, which may help ease traffic as well.

Truck traffic in residential areas has been an annoyance for many South Brunswick residents. During the month of October, trucks driving in places where they should not accounted for the largest proportion of tickets issued, especially around Dayton. Past efforts to control truck traffic have included weight limits, speed limits and truck lanes.

While the town has yet to take bids on the road construction, Mayor Frank Gamabatese was happy about the progress of the project.

"This was our main argument with regard to Route 92. ... This is the last leg and we’d really like to see it. I think it will help a lot of the traffic problems in this town."