Sunday, May 22, 2011

The 206 Bypass Rapture

For many years - no, make that decades - there have been rumors that a Route 206 Bypass would be built through Hillsborough in order to relieve traffic congestion on "Old" Route 206.

Well, the construction has started and local residents may now file this whole project under "be careful what you wish for".

For months locals watched the construction equipment clear roads across the fields and vacated houses get boarded up.

Then Hillsborough Road between Route 206 and Willow Road closed on April 26th. There were plenty of warnings about this closing, but apparently many local drivers thought that the closing would only be temporary and kept coming back. Be advised, this closing will last six months - until sometime in October. This wasn't a major problem as you could still cut across nearby Homestead Road.

Next they slowed down - and sometimes stopped - traffic on Amwell Road between "old" Route 206 and the Clerico Lane bridge as they moved the lanes of travel to one side in order to allow the realignment of Amwell Road. This section of Amwell Road is part of the official Hillsborough Road detour.

This past week a lit-up sign went up on Homestead Road warning that there would be 15-minute stops. They have started putting up the bridge over Homestead Road near the railroad.

Now, if you are following this, there are now three parallel roads between Route 206 and Willow Road with traffic delays - three roads that let you drive from the west part of town to the east side.

On top of this, last Monday on Route 206 it took me 40-minutes to go down Route 206 from Homestead Road to the Belle Mead Bridge in Montgomery. [If you aren't from this area, that normally takes about five minutes.] The construction on the replacement bridge reached the point where they were only allowing one lane on Route 206.

One more thing:
The New Jersey Department of Transportation announced it will be resurfacing about 2.5-miles of Route 206 from about Hamilton Road to the Somerville border.

Rapture: "...mystical transportation: a mystical experience in which somebody believes he or she is transported into the spiritual realm..." - Bing Dictionary.

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