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news release

P.O. Box 600
Trenton, NJ

Contact: Joe Fiordaliso

RELEASE: August 3, 2004

Lettiere announces accelerated schedule for completion of Route 4 rehabilitation project


Work to be completed by November 2004, Nine Months Ahead of Schedule


(Paramus) New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) Commissioner Jack Lettiere announced today that the $25 million rehabilitation of Route 4 in Bergen County would be completed by November 23, 2004, a full nine months ahead of schedule.

The project (Route 4 Sec. 2AC), scheduled to be complete in August 2005, will be accelerated by nine months, resulting in savings of $800,000 to NJDOT in construction and engineering costs and saving the motoring public over $2.65 million in lost time and lost fuel. The rehabilitation of Route 4 makes significant improvements to safety and provides needed congestion relief to the region. Route 4 is one of the most heavily traveled stretches of roadway in New Jersey and its quick completion is critical.

“Route 4 must be reopened as soon as possible, and we're happy to be able to say we've accelerated the completion of this work by nine months.” stated Commissioner Lettiere. “Our goal is to finish our work and get out of the motorists way as soon as possible. Allowing this project to continue through the holiday shopping season would cause a significant inconvenience to motorists and hardship to businesses in the region.”

Ultimately, $3.5 million will be saved by the acceleration of this project. The NJDOT will save nearly $800,000 (or $4,100 per day) in construction and engineering costs by completing this project nine months early. In addition, New Jersey motorists will save $2.65 million (or $68,000 per week) in lost time and lost fuel caused by congestion and delays from sitting in traffic. In addition to the savings in construction and engineering costs, NJDOT will be able to avoid any damage to the highway due to winter conditions and snow and ice removal, which is likely whenever a construction project carries through the winter months.

This project is necessary in order to reduce congestion and make safety improvements to Route 4. Given the high commercial characteristics of Route 4, vehicles enter and exit the highway without any transition area. This creates an unsafe condition for motorists and will be remedied by the improvements in this project. The project includes rehabilitation of Route 4 to provide shoulders, acceleration and deceleration lanes, and new interchange ramps. The project also includes the construction of an auxiliary lane along Route 4 eastbound and westbound that will improve safety. In addition, the project includes the reconstruction of a pedestrian bridge in order to provide pedestrians with the ability to cross Route 4.

Route 4 is a crossroads for the region, and a major route for shoppers from New York looking to save money, particularly on sales tax on clothing. On any given day, approximately 300,000 vehicles pass thru the Route 4 and 17 interchange -- making it one of the busiest, if not the busiest, interchange in the country. Bergen County, the most populous county in New Jersey, is home to 19 major malls and shopping centers and has an employment base of over half a million. Garden State Plaza , along Route 4, is the fifth-largest mall in the nation. Given the high commercial character of this stretch of roadway, it is necessary to make improvements to alleviate congestion, enhance safety, and improve traffic flow. This project marks a major improvement in the road network in Northern New Jersey .

“Governor McGreevey has made a commitment to improving the quality of life for Bergen County residents and New Jersey 's motoring public,” said Lettiere. “The Governor has invested in the future of our transportation infrastructure by making the rehabilitation of Route 4 a reality.”

On June 30, 2004 Governor McGreevey signed the State's FY2005 budget into law, finalizing the $2.58 billion capital program for NJDOT and NJ TRANSIT for FY 2005. The FY 2005 capital program is a fiscally responsible, yet robust investment in New Jersey 's transportation network. The capital program fulfills Governor McGreevey's commitment to improving safety, easing congestion by using smart growth and fix-it-first strategies, and providing needed property tax relief to New Jersey 's counties and municipalities. This $2.58 billion program implements Governor McGreevey's Smart Growth and Fix-It-First initiatives and will provide a significant stimulus to the State's economy. Roughly $1.4 billion of the capital program is for use by the NJDOT, and $1.2 billion by NJ TRANSIT.
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  Department of Transportation
  P.O. Box 600
  Trenton, NJ 08625-0600
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  Last Updated:  August 3, 2004