Hightstown Paving Project Detours Nighttime Traffic
Route 33 through downtown Hightstown will be closed from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. for a week.
This article has been updated to clarify the cost of the project.
A road-paving project started on Route 33 Sunday, leading to detours for vehicles attempting to navigate through downtown Hightstown at night.
The paving and milling project, which is being done by the New Jersey Department of Transportation, is scheduled to last for approximately a week, according to NJDOT spokesman Joe Dee. The road will be closed from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m.
This is one phase of the project that began several months ago, Dee said. Route 33 will be closed between Hickory Corner Road, near Home Depot and Wal-Mart in East Windsor Township, to Stockton Street in Hightstown.
“There will be detours posted from where 130 and 33 split at Hickory Corner Road up north to the 133 bypass,” Dee said. Motorists can access Hightstown by going to the Route 133 bypass down to Route 33, east of the project area.
Dee said the project was slightly delayed because Hurricane Irene caused some damage to the Peddie Lake dam. NJDOT maintenance employees had to repair portions of the area before they could continue with the paving and milling project.
The Hightstown project is one of several in the county, making up 13 miles of roadway, according to Dee. The total cost of the project, which began in May, is $8.2 million but it was not immediately known how much the portion in Hightstown was costing.
The project is being funded by NJDOT and will not come directly from Hightstown taxpayers, according to Mayor Steven Kirson.
“Basically it’s a state road and so they are paying for the project,” Kirson said. “Obviously the state continually looks to improve their roads and we are fortunate they made it to Hightstown, and we are looking forward to clean roads in Hightstown. It helps get people around a little easier. It’s a positive thing and we don’t have to pay for it.”
Chef Claudio Patella at Tavern on the Lake had concerns about the project and said it would affect business.
“It’s [the project’s] going to impact the business. Even at nine o’clock we are still working. Especially on Wednesdays when we have karaoke. It’s definitely going to impact us.”
According to Kirson, this is not the only road project that will be happening, with others paid for by various grants.
“There will be a project passed by resolution to put in sidewalks on Stockton Street to allow safe passage for school children to get to school, which could begin sometime this fall or in the early part of spring.”
Other upcoming projects include a milling and paving project on Grape Run Road and Pershing Avenue, and a $380,000 milling and paving grant for work on Reed Street and Chamberlin Avenue.