Rep. Pascrell Announces Federal Grant for Improvements to US Route 46, NJ Route 23, and Interstate 80 Exchange
Congressman pleased with continuing improvements to the "Spaghetti Bowl"
PATERSON - U.S. Rep. Bill Pascrell, Jr. (D-N.J., 8th) announced today that New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) will make improvements to the US Route 46, NJ Route 23, and Interstate 80 interchange with a $400,000 grant from the Federal Highway Administration's (FHWA) Innovative Bridge Research and Construction Program. The grant will fund bridge deck replacement, ramp modifications, lane widening, and additional signage and lighting at the interchange.
"The 23/46/80 interchange has come a long way in terms of safety and efficiency, but the improvements must continue," stated Congressman Pascrell, a member of a House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. "These dollars represent our continuous commitment to the thousands of motorists who use the 'Spaghetti Bowl' every day."
"As we work to restore and repair our aging infrastructure, nowhere is the need as critical in Northern New Jersey," said Jack Lettiere, Commissioner of the New Jersey Department of Transportation. "As in the past, we are grateful for Congressman Pascrell's help and leadership in securing funding, and his commitment to making sure New Jersey receives its fair share of TEA-21 monies."
The project is being funded as part of a Transportation Equity Act for the Twenty-First Century (TEA-21) program to evaluate the performance of innovative, high performance materials in highway bridges. In 1998, Congressman Pascrell helped author TEA-21, a six-year, $198 billion reauthorization of the nation's highway and transit-spending programs. Currently, Rep. Pascrell, as a member of the Transportation Committee, is working on the reauthorization of the TEA-21 program and hopes to bring more federal transportation dollars to New Jersey.
"TEA-21 has provided an incredible number of benefits for New Jersey highway and transit infrastructure. We have unprecedented transportation needs in our state. It is critical that New Jersey continues to profit from the TEA-21 program. I will work with my colleagues to reauthorize the program and secure the dollars New Jersey needs and deserves."
Congressman Pascrell has fought to secure funding for the 23/46/80 interchange for many years. In 1998, he secured $8.5 million for the recently completed flyover from I-80 West to Route 23 North in TEA-21. The construction of the flyover was a the critical first step in alleviating the "Spaghetti Bowl" traffic nightmare at the junctions of Routes 23, 46 and 80--one of the worst interchanges in the Garden State.
Currently, 300,000 cars per day utilize the Routes 23/46/80 interchange, which is the site of about 350 accidents per year. Given the number of people who rely on these roadways, Congressman Pascrell believes he and other officials must do all they can to reduce the number of accidents.