The Senate Transportation Committee today approved a bill that would get rid of a New Jersey icon: the jughandle.

Jughandle from Hooper Avenue to Fischer Avenue in Toms River (YouTube)

Senate Bill 207 would prohibit "the planning, design or construction of a jughandle on a  highway  project" including roads maintained by the New Jersey Turnpike, Garden State Parkway and Atlantic City Expressway.

The measure's sponsor, Ocean County Republican James Holzapfel was asked Monday to meet with the state Transportation Department to see if exemptions should be allowed.

The state Transportation Department says jughandles can be helpful, preventing turning vehicles from backing up on main roadways and slowing traffic.

“They just do not function,”  said Holzapfel during today's hearing according to the Star Ledger. . “Simply put, in my opinion, they belong with the circles. Circles used to function when traffic was lighter and people would ingress and egress without difficulty, but with the volume of traffic that we have today, they just don’t function.”

The legislation next goes to the full Senate for consideration.

Holzapel earlier posted on his Facebook page that jughandles “might have been a good idea in the 1950s and ’60s, but many of them simply aren’t suitable for today’s needs because they add to travel time.”

“People wait through three, sometimes four, light changes to get though the jughandles,” Holzapfel said. “Their day has come and gone.”

Citing the jughandle on Route 37 at Hooper Avenue in Toms River, his home district, Holzapfel told the Daily Record, “People wait through three, sometimes four, light changes to get though the jughandles,” Holzapfel said. “Their day has come and gone.”