Work begins on new bridge at Route 9 and Route 522

Work begins on new bridge
at Route 9 and Route 522

FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP — Con-struction crews created a staging area and began clearing trees and brush along Route 522 and Route 9 last week as work got under way on a project that will see the construction of a new bridge.

The state Department of Transpor-tation (DOT) is replacing the Route 9 bridge that crosses over Route 522 and the Freehold Secondary Branch rail line.

DOT representatives have said plans call for the work on the new bridge and access ramps to be completed in stages in order to minimize the disruption of the normal flow of traffic.

The need to replace the existing bridge, which was built in 1937, is caused by conditions that do not meet current standards, a DOT spokesman said.

The bridge is on a crest vertical curve which in combination with the absence of shoulders or acceleration-deceleration lanes and substandard ramp configura­tions creates conditions which makes the bridge’s replacement necessary, according to the DOT.

The spokesman said plans call for the construction of a new bridge with three 12-foot-wide lanes, acceleration-decelera­tion lanes and 10-foot shoulders in each direc­tion. The existing bridge has two 10-foot wide travel lanes in each direction with no shoulders. The new bridge will be bi­cycle/pedestrian compatible.

Some traffic is expected to be detoured through Freehold Borough during various phases of the construction project. It is expected that Route 9 will remain open during construction.

Plans call for only the ramp traffic from Route 9 northbound on to Route 522 and from Route 9 southbound on to Route 522 to be diverted. The proposal states that Route 522 westbound to Route 9 northbound and Route 522 eastbound to Route 9 southbound, will always stay open to traffic and only one ramp at a time will be closed.

A DOT spokesman did not return a telephone message on Monday seeking the name of the contractor, the cost of the project and the expected length of construction.