Route 72 U-Turn on Cedar Bonnet Island reopened two weeks early
Weekday closures of the U-turn may be necessary for watering new plantings
(Trenton) - New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) officials today announced the Route 72 the center median U-turn on Cedar Bonnet Island was reopened on Friday morning, August 2 – two weeks ahead of schedule – as the Route 72 Manahawkin Bay Bridges project advances.
NJDOT's contractor, George Harms Construction Co., completed restriping and barrier removal on Friday, August 2 to reopen the left lane in each direction between the main Causeway Bridges and the West Thorofare Bridges and reopened the center median U-turn on Cedar Bonnet Island. The U-turn near the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge Environmental Trail between the main Causeway Bridges and the West Thorofare Bridges had been closed for drainage work since February.
The U-turns may be closed weekdays, Monday through Friday from 7 am to 3:30 pm, to allow for the watering of new plantings along the upper perimeter of the drainage basins for the next two months. The U-turns will be open on weekends and nightly.
Full Sidewalk to Be Opened
In addition, pedestrians will be able to utilize the entire length of the sidewalk from Stafford across the bridges to Ship Bottom once barriers have been placed in the next week or so. The barriers will create a safe walking area in the section where the permanent sidewalk needs to be completed on Cedar Bonnet Island. The remaining section of the sidewalk should be completed by the end of the summer. Later this week or next, the temporary shuttle service that has been in place to accommodate pedestrians will be discontinued.
Work on the $312 million Route 72/Manahawkin Bay Bridge project began in 2013 and is expected to continue through 2021. The 3-mile long causeway links Stafford on the mainland with Ship Bottom on Long Beach Island.
As part of the project, a new bridge has been constructed parallel to the existing one over Manahawkin Bay, providing the safety of a redundant route on or off the island. The new bridge is carrying two lanes of eastbound traffic, while the rehabilitated original bridge is carrying two lanes of westbound traffic. For more information NJDOT developed a project-specific website.
The precise timing of the work is subject to change due to weather or other factors. Motorists are encouraged to check NJDOT’s traffic information website www.511nj.org for construction updates and real-time travel information and for NJDOT news follow us on Twitter @NJDOT_info.
Please note, the NJDOT Communications Office has a new phone number – 609-963-1975.