SIX-MONTH ROUTE 520 BOTTLENECK TO BEGIN

One of two spans will remain open throughout the duration of the project, but with just one lane in each direction. (Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

A taxing season begins Monday night for commuters who use Route 520 to get into and out of Red Bank.

Following the evening rush, traffic across the twin decks of the bridge over the Swimming River, between Hance Avenue and the Garden State Parkway, will be narrowed from two lanes in each direction to one.

Those few souls who traverse the span on foot –  or use it for fishing and crabbing – will be entirely out of luck: no pedestrian access will be permitted at all.

“Motorists should expect delays and are encouraged to plan alternate routes for the next six months,” the county government says in a press release, which is an improvement from last month, when it was warning of an eight-month timetable.

Here’s the full announcement:

On April 15, the County will begin a project to replace the bridge decks on
the twin County Route 520, Newman Springs Road, bridges over the Swimming River between the
Garden State Parkway and Hance Avenue.

Motorists should expect delays and are encouraged to plan alternate routes for the next six months.

One bridge will remain open to vehicular traffic throughout the project, but traffic through the work
area will be restricted to a single lane in each direction. The initial shift of traffic lanes will take place
Monday, April 15 after the evening rush hour.

The posted speed limit will also be reduced to 25 mph during the bridge project. Pedestrian access
across the bridge and through the project site will not be permitted during the six month construction
time.

The existing concrete decks on both bridges will be completely removed and replaced by new concrete
decks and bridge railings of the same dimensions as existing. Work will include complete replacement
of the bridge approach slabs including the curb, sidewalk, and guide rail.

The county’s ongoing project to upgrade intersections along Newman Springs Road has been
completed in the area of the bridge project. Specifically, the area between Hance Avenue at the Tinton
Falls/Red Bank border to Phalanx Road in Middletown is complete. The work from Phalanx Road to
Holmdel-Keyport Road in Holmdel will continue over the next few weeks and includes upgrades to
crosswalks to make the intersections and traffic signal operations more accessible to individuals with
disabilities.

The New Jersey American Water Company work along Swimming River Road (County Route 50)
between Newman Springs Road in Middletown and County Route 537 in Tinton Falls/Colts Neck will
continue, but will not require any road closures.

The County’s Department of Public Works and Engineering is overseeing these projects.