TRENTON – Senator Jeff Van Drew (D-Atlantic/Cape May/Cumberland) this week sent a letter to the New Jersey Department of Transportation urging funding for infrastructure projects in South Jersey. The Senator requested funding for the design of the Route 55 extension to Cape May County and the Garden State Parkway full interchange for Exit 20:
“These are not only important infrastructure projects they are also safety issues, as the current situation creates a risk for both the drivers that pass through as well as the local residents. They must be addressed.
“Traffic congestion in the area of Route 55 has been a problem for decades. We cannot keep counting on Routes 47 and 347 to take the brunt of the traffic going towards Cape May. Vehicle access in and out of the county is vulnerable when the Garden State Parkway or other major roads are inaccessible. This could become a real danger if people need to evacuate and cannot because there aren’t any open roadways to travel out on.
“We also must fund the Garden State Parkway Exit 20 full interchange project. Exit 20 only exists as a northbound exit off the Parkway, and the next exit is a few miles south. This causes significant and dangerous traffic buildup at Exit 25 for those who would otherwise exit further down. Exit 25 is already a very busy exit as it is the southern entry point off the Parkway for Ocean City, and the additional drivers there have been raising safety concerns for local residents. A full interchange is needed to alleviate the congestion at Exit 25.
“I urge the New Jersey Department of Transportation to fund these projects in the 2018 Capital Plan.”