NJ drivers headed to New York: Get ready for a new headache
Starting this Monday, August 30, a new permanent traffic pattern on Interstate 278 is scheduled to begin. This will most certainly affect travel times for New Jersey drivers and commercial truck traffic through Brooklyn.
The road is set to be reduced by one lane in each direction near the waterfront and promenade.
There will be two wider lanes compared to the current three lane pattern.
I-278 is the one and only major interstate truck route that connects New Jersey with all of NYC’s five boroughs.
The highway begins in New Jersey at Linden and crosses the Goethals and Verrazzano Bridges. Trucks, deliveries, everybody uses I-278 (aka The BQE).
This project has the potential to be a 24/7 traffic nightmare for the rest of forever.
Quick history ... Road capacity was exceeded soon after the highway opened nearly 70 years ago and not much has been done to address the long term decay of this crucial stretch of highway.
Although plans have been proposed to completely redesign and repurpose the road, nothing has been approved.
This plan will simply serve to lighten the use and limit stress from overweight and oversized trucks on the double deckered cantilever structure. It will extend the lifespan of the highway from an alarming five years to 20 years.
But at the same time, the project is going to reduce road capacity by 30%. Three lanes down to two. A traffic funnel that’s not going to be fun. And that means unknown amounts of increased travel times for New Jersey drivers and the entire region.
Well, at least you’ll have time to watch the proverbial can being kicked down the road as you sit in the backups. Pass the Tylenol.
Bob Williams is the New Jersey Traffic North reporter on New Jersey 101.5