Route 35 Construction Plan for Summer Announced [AUDIO]
As the Jersey Shore gets ready for another post-Sandy tourism season, officials from the New Jersey Department of Transportation have hammered out construction plans for Route 35 for the summer season.
For Memorial Day weekend, construction on the barrier island will be suspended beginning at noon on May 22 through May 27.
"They'll always have one lane in each direction; unless just periodically, they might have to stop and have alternate traffic," said Toms River mayor Thomas Kelaher.
Construction will resume through June 18, then cease completely for the summer.
Kelaher said the construction project fell behind schedule because of all the snow and freezing temperatures the Jersey Shore experienced during the winter.
"It's a major operation and could something else happen to screw that up? Yes," Kelaher said. "If it does, I can't say it would be (the DOT's) fault."
The project involves ripping up the roadway, rebuilding it and installing a new drainage system.
In addition, Kelaher said motorists traveling from Toms River into Pelican Island and Seaside Park will be able to bear to the right, and follow Central Avenue at least as far south as J Street.
Concerns from realtors and property owners about accessing beaches and homes on the barrier island prompted Toms River officials to request a meeting with the DOT, which occurred last week.
"It was a very informative meeting," Kelaher said. "I think the representatives from the DOT certainly indicated that they were aware of what our problems were and they certainly manifested a sympathetic ear, and a desire to want to do what they could to help."