Hooray! It’s finally here!

The long-awaited Route 206 Bypass in Hillsborough is open to traffic.

The 3.6 mile limited access highway runs north and south between Mountain View Road and Old Somerville Road. It has two lanes in each direction and will provide much needed relief to the daily crush of commuter traffic on what will be now known as “Business Route” or “Old” Route 206 through the Hillsborough Centre area.

New Jersey DOT still has some finishing touches to complete on the project including the lane widening between Valley Road and Doctors Way. Other future projects include widening and limited access improvements that will make the highway four lanes all the way north to Somerville.

According to the DOT 30,000 vehicles use the Route 206 Hillsborough corridor daily.

Hillsborough Route 206 Bypass ceremony (Courtesy Township of Hillsborough)
Hillsborough Route 206 Bypass ceremony (Courtesy Township of Hillsborough)

The Route 206 Bypass project has been a long time dream for planners. It allows for the economic development of a town center for commerce without the pressure of all of that daily traffic being jammed through one lane in each direction.

It will also improve safety for motorists and pedestrians.

Construction began in 2010 on a portion of the bypass that had been previously open near Amwell Road but it was never completed and connected to the original Route 206 until now.

The official name of the new highway is the Peter J Biondi Bypass. It is named for the late Republican state assemblyman from Somerset County who was known as “Mr. Hillsborough” for his tireless dedication to the community.

History of Route 206 and proposed Hillsborough highways

Plans for a limited access highway in Somerset County have been proposed going back to the 1960s with the original Somerset Freeway (I-95) project. I-95 would have been constructed to run between I-295 in Mercer County through Somerset and connect with I-287.

After nearly 20 years of revisions and community opposition, the highway was cancelled in 1982. Several plans for Route 206 bypass projects between Princeton and Somerville were proposed over the years but they never got off the drawing board.

Development, housing construction and traffic volumes exploded in the region yet nothing was done to address problem of sufficient highway access. The town of Hillsborough would not give up on the plan and so they proceeded on their own to create the new Route 206 Biondi-Bypass.

Hopefully this new road will give you, the weary motorist who tackles Route 206 everyday something to smile about. Here’s to improved commute times and a little less stress!

Although travel conditions may not be perfect in the beginning as you get familiar with the new ramps, signs, and the new merge points, it’s got to be better than what it was. Happy Motoring!

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