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news release

P.O. Box 600
Trenton, NJ
Contact: Steve Schapiro
Mairin Bellack
RELEASE: February 04, 2019

Route 72 Westbound traffic to shift onto Old Causeway Bridge

U-Turn on Cedar Bonnet Island to close for median drainage work

(Trenton) -New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) officials today announced Route 72 westbound traffic will be shifted from the new bridge to the reconstructed Old Causeway Bridge this week as the Route 72 Manahawkin Bay Bridges project advances. 

Beginning at 7 a.m. until 11:30 a.m. tomorrow, Tuesday, February 5, NJDOT's contractor, George Harms Construction Co., is scheduled to shift the single lane of Route 72 westbound from the newly constructed Causeway Bridge into a single lane over the reconstructed Old Causeway Bridge, reopening it to traffic for the first time since it was closed for reconstruction in 2016. Eastbound traffic will remain on the New Causeway Bridge. Route 72 has been reduced to a single lane in each direction since October for construction. The normal two lanes of traffic in each direction are expected to be open before the summer.

Center Median U-Turn Closure
In addition, at 7 a.m. Wednesday, February 6, the center median U-turn in both directions on Cedar Bonnet Island near the Edwin B. Forsythe National Wildlife Refuge Environmental Trail between the main Causeway Bridges and the West Thorofare Bridges will be closed for drainage work. Access will be maintained for emergency vehicles.

  • Motorists heading westbound wishing to make a U-turn will be directed across the main Causeway Bridges to Marsha Drive, where they will be able to make a U-turn to head east.
  • Motorists heading eastbound wishing to make a U-turn will be directed across the West and East Thorofare Bridges onto 9th Street, where they can make a left onto N. Barnegat Avenue and left onto 8th Street, which will take them back onto the bridge.

Work on the $312 million Route 72/Manahawkin Bay Bridge project began in 2013 and is expected to continue through 2021. The 3-mile long causeway links Stafford on the mainland with Ship Bottom on Long Beach Island. 

As part of the project, a new bridge has been constructed parallel to the existing one over Manahawkin Bay, providing the safety of a redundant route on or off the island. The new bridge has carried two lanes of traffic in each direction since 2016 while the original Causeway Bridge has been under reconstruction. Ultimately, it will function as the bridge for eastbound traffic once the project is completed, with the rehabilitated original bridge carrying westbound traffic. For more information NJDOT developed a project-specific website

The precise timing of the work is subject to change due to weather or other factors. Motorists are encouraged to check NJDOT’s traffic information website www.511nj.org for construction updates and real-time travel information and for NJDOT news follow us on Twitter @NJDOT_info.

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  Department of Transportation
  P.O. Box 600
  Trenton, NJ 08625-0600
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  Last Updated:  February 7, 2019