All construction is now completed.
The New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) proposes to provide motorist, pedestrian, bicyclist safety and traffic congestion improvements as well as aesthetic enhancements to First Street in Newark from Sussex Avenue to West Market Street through the University Heights Connector project. Substantial
landscape and streetscape amenities will make it an attractive gateway to the city from I-280.
First Street currently has traffic congestion during the commuter peak periods with increasing volumes and speed on residential streets,
high accident rates and pedestrian safety issues.
The proposed improvements in a boulevard concept includes two lanes in each direction, a raised planted median, reconstructed
sidewalks, a bikeway that coordinates with the Newark Greenway Plan and a streetscape with new trees, lighting fixtures and benches.
By implementing this project, traffic movement and safety will improve and impacts to noise, air quality, ecology, hazardous waste sites or land use resources will not be significant.
However, the historic architectural resource at 400-406 Central Avenue contained archeological features in the corridor, and 23 total or partial acquisitions of residential, religious and business properties, were adversely impacted.
Conversely, no negatives impacts are expected to existing or proposed development in the study area and to low income or minority populations who live or work in the project area.
The University Heights Connector project, currently in the construction phase, will be completed by summer 2008.