Codey moves up demolition of Essex Northbound Plaza on the Garden State Parkway
(TRENTON) –Acting Governor Richard J. Codey announced plans to reduce congestion and improve driving on the Garden State Parkway by accelerating the implementation of one-way tolling at the Essex Toll Plaza and eliminating the Northbound Toll more than two years ahead of schedule.
“There are few things in life more frustrating than sitting in traffic,” Codey stated. “By expanding the Alternate One-Way Toll program and removing the Essex Northbound Plaza, we are making commuting a little easier and life a little better for New Jersey’s residents.”
“One-way tolling is a common sense approach to addressing an age-old problem,” said Codey. “This is another step in the right direction that will yield tremendous results for our state, our residents and our quality of life.”
Under the plan, the demolition of the Essex North Toll Plaza will begin on July 15 and be complete in approximately 60 days. The New Jersey Turnpike Authority will continue to work towards the implementation of Express E-Z Pass at the Essex South Plaza.
The Essex Toll Plaza will be the fourth to implement one-way tolls, joining Union, Raritan and Asbury Park. Initially unveiled in May of 2004, alternating one-way tolls on the Parkway have already shown significant results in terms of reducing congestion and commuting times for motorists.
“In less than one year we have made some of the most long-lasting and positive impacts on easing travels on our roadways,” said Michael Lapolla, Executive Director of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority. “The success of the Alternate One-Way Tolls program will continue to help provide congestion-busting relief to New Jersey motorists.”
"Parkway motorists have seen the tremendous benefits of the One-Way Tolls initiative at the Union, Asbury, and Raritan toll plazas," said Transportation Commissioner Jack Lettiere. "Now motorists at the Essex plaza will see the same benefits. Governor Codey is committed to moving full speed ahead with the one-way tolls program as it is reducing congestion on the Parkway."
Given the success and popularity of the Alternate One-Way Toll program, the governor also announced that he has directed the New Jersey Turnpike Authority to develop a plan for the installation of alternate tolls and determine the feasibility of implementing Express E-Z Pass at the Great Egg, New Gretna and Cape May Toll Plazas in 2006. The plan is due on June 15th.
“Alternate tolls on the southern end of the Garden State Parkway will help alleviate chronic summertime traffic delays for people taking advantage of New Jersey’s shore attractions,” said Codey. “A more accessible Jersey Shore leads to more tourism and a stronger economy for our state.”
The plan requires the approval of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority. The Authority is expected to endorse the plan at its meeting tomorrow.