August 21, 2019

Area Roadwork and Construction Cause More Traffic, Detours

By Wendy Greenberg

If you think that traffic and detours around Princeton are slowing you down more than usual this summer, it is not your imagination.

“This year’s construction work activity is heavier than normal,” confirmed Princeton Municipal Engineer Deanna Stockton. “From the municipality’s perspective, the PSE&G gas main replacement work has been the main contributor to the heavier schedule. The locations of work have also been more focused on the higher volume roadways.”

But some good news is on the horizon. Residents might be navigating detours, and dealing with noise and some inconvenience, but infrastructure improvements are underway, and some work is scheduled to end soon.

Public Service Electric and Gas (PSE&G) continues to work on its gas system modernization program, which includes the replacement of seven miles of gas main with 600 residential gas services upgraded or replaced as a part of the project.  Remaining areas of work for gas main replacement include Nassau Street/Princeton-Kingston Road (Prospect Avenue Extension to Harrison Street) and Harrison Street. Pavement restoration activities are ongoing in the quadrant bordered by Nassau Street and South Harrison Street. This work is part of PSE&G’s statewide initiative to replace 875 miles of aging cast iron gas pipes with new, durable plastic and/or coated steel piping, a five-year program that will improve the overall system.

Alexander Road, the main access from Route 1 to Nassau Street, will likely see short-term closures and alternating traffic operations to allow for utility relocation and other work in advance of the road closure scheduled for November 6. The Alexander Road and Faculty Road intersection provides an alternate route.

There is good news for travelers on Cherry Valley Road (Cherry Hill Road to Jefferson’s Curve). The road is anticipated to be reopened to traffic by September 5. Before that date, the contractor is finishing storm sewer, curb, pathway, and roadway improvements. The intersection of Cherry Hill Road/Cherry Valley Road will be closed for final paving for one day during the next two weeks.

But outside of town there is more roadwork to come. This week, The Mercer County Department of Transportation and Infrastructure was scheduled to start work on the replacement of the bridge on Washington Crossing-Pennington Road (County Route 546) over Woolsey Brook in Hopewell Township. The structure is located between Scotch Road and Bear Tavern Road. During construction, the bridge will be completely closed to all traffic and alternate routes are posted (Scotch Road, Interstate 295, and NJ Route 29), according to the county.

The New Jersey Department of Transportation’s (NJDOT) Route 206 resurfacing project is scheduled to begin soon, and extend until November.  Daytime and nighttime alternating traffic operations are proposed to accommodate curb, curb ramp replacements, and roadway resurfacing. The NJDOT is resurfacing approximately 12 miles of Route 206 from NJ Route 27 (Nassau Street) to Trenton. The work will repair the roadway surface to improve rideability. It will involve milling of the roadway surface, removal of any unsound or locally deteriorated pavement, and placement of approved bituminous asphalt material, according to information from the municipality of Princeton. (A planned closure of Route 206 this Saturday, August 24, from 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., will allow NJDOT to remove a dead tree.)

Also, a municipal infrastructure project on Linden Lane and Spruce Street may begin this fall. Proposed improvements to Linden Lane (Nassau Street to Hamilton Avenue) will include sanitary sewer main and lateral repairs or replacement, storm sewer pipe and inlet repairs, gas main and services replacements by PSE&G, roadway resurfacing, and sidewalk replacement. Proposed for Linden Lane (Hamilton Avenue to Henry Avenue) are sanitary sewer main and lateral repairs/replacement and roadway resurfacing.

Current information regarding traffic impacts due to construction activities can be found on Princeton’s website,, and through the Princeton Police Department’s social media.