Landis Avenue Corridor Improvements

Since fiscal year (FY) 2014, Landis Avenue in the City of Vineland has been receiving federal funds through SJTPO for corridor improvements. Landis Avenue serves as “Main Street” in Vineland, and is home to many shops, municipal buildings, churches, hotels, big-box stores, and more. Six stages of improvements are planned for the three-mile stretch of Landis Avenue beginning at Myrtle Street and working westward to Route 55. Planned improvements include new pavement, upgrades to sidewalks and crosswalks, bulb-outs to reduce pedestrian crossing distance, mid-block crossings, improved pavement markings, and traffic signal upgrades. To date, from FY 2014 to FY 2018, $4,403,000 in funding has been made available through SJTPO’s federal resurfacing allocation, Surface Transportation Block Grant Program – South Jersey (STBGP-SJ), and Congestion Mitigation & Air Quality (CMAQ) funds.

Phase one of the project, referred to in the FY 2014-2023 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) (available here) as Landis Avenue, Myrtle Street to Boulevards, Resurfacing began in FY 2014. This phase received $632,000 in Surface Transportation Program-South Jersey (STP-SJ) funds and went to the mill and overlay of Landis Avenue from Myrtle Street to the Boulevards. Mill and overlay refers to a typical roadway repavement, where the top inches of asphalt are milled or removed then an overlay of new asphalt is put in place. Bulb-outs at intersections to improve safety for pedestrian cross and highly visible mid-block crossing were also added. Further, traffic signals were replaced. The traffic signal upgrades were funded through CMAQ for $1.014 million. The signal upgrades included mast arms and signal heads, larger and brighter bulbs, cameras to detect traffic waiting on side streets, and improved timing of signals.

At the intersection of Landis Avenue and Myrtle Street, new striping, bulb-outs to reduce pedestrian crossing length, and newly installed traffic signals with improved lighting are all improvements funded through the SJTPO.

The second phase began in FY 2015. Known as the Landis Avenue, Phase II, West Avenue to the Boulevards (County Route (CR) 615S), the project received $632,000 from STP-SJ funding, the same source as phase one. The funds went to various improvements including the mill and overlay of the roadway, widening the existing right-of-way, removing and replacing concrete items, such as curbs or other drainage features, rehabilitation of the existing storm sewer infrastructure, and bulb-outs, as needed. Traffic signal upgrades were authorized in October of 2017 for $873,300 in CMAQ funding.

In FY 2015, $50,000 in funds went to the design of Landis Avenue, Phase III, Coney Avenue to West Avenue. Then in FY 2016, construction began. $670,000 in STATE-SJTPO funds was used to mill and overlay the roadway, widen the existing right-of-way, removal and replacement of concrete items, such as curbs or other drainage features, and rehabilitation of the existing storm sewer infrastructure, as needed.

Landis Avenue, Phase IV, Orchard Road (CR 628) to Moyer Street, milepost (MP) 8.69 to 9.09 was funded in FY 2017 with STP-SJ funds. Much like phase three, the $609,000 in funding for phase four went to the mill and overlay of the given roadway corridor, widening the existing right-of-way, removal and replacement of concrete items, such as curbs or other drainage features, and rehabilitation of the existing storm sewer infrastructure, as needed. Traffic signal improvements are planned, with authorization pending.

Phase five, referred to in the FY 2016-2025 TIP (available here) as Landis Avenue, Phase V, Mill Road to Orchard Rd (CR 628), began with design in FY 2017. $50,000 in STP-SJ funds went into designing the improvement project. Then in 2018, construction began. Funds were made available in the FY 2018-2027 TIP through the STBGP-SJ funding program. The $1,710,000 went to the mill and overlay of the roadway within the existing right-of-way.

The sixth and final phase of the final corridor improvement, known as Landis Avenue, Mill Road to Rt. 55 began with design in FY 2018. The design for the improvements cost $50,000 and was funded through STBGP-SJ funds. In FY 2019, the SJTPO intends to fund the construction portion of the improvements. The improvements will include the mill and overlay of the roadway within the existing right-of-way, removal and replacement of concrete items, and rehabilitation of the existing storm sewer infrastructure, as needed. The improvements are expected to cost $1,300,000. An update for phase six will be provided when applicable.

 

Project Authorizations: August 2018 through September 2018

SJTPO works closely with its constituent planning partners to connect transportation projects to federal funding. In recent months, a total of nine projects in three of SJTPO’s four counties have been authorized to advance for federal funding. A project is ‘authorized’ when it has received final approval to begin spending federal dollars. Of the nine projects, four are in Atlantic County, three are in Cumberland County, and two are in Salem County. Each project is included in the latest Fiscal Year (FY) 2018-2027 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP), which is the SJTPO product that documents funded projects.

In Atlantic County, the first project authorized is Route 73 (Blue Anchor Road), Route 322 to Route 54 (Twelfth Street). This $1.3 million project will resurface a 2.4 mile stretch of Route 73 within the existing right-of-way. The second project is referenced in the TIP as Delilah Road (County Route 646), English Creek Road to Sharkey Place. This $1.1 million project will allow for reconstruction of the roadway, down to the base layers of asphalt, for a 1.27 mile stretch of Delilah Road. Further, the third project authorized is referred to as Chelsea Section, Albany Avenue. Located in Atlantic City, the design phase of this project was authorized for $133,000. The designs will include improvements to the roadway including resurfacing, upgrades to curb ramps, drainage improvements, and more. The construction phase of this project is expected to follow in FY 2019, when the design is completed. Also, in Atlantic City, is the Atlantic Avenue, Morris Avenue to Rhode Island Avenue project. Funded in earlier years with Transportation Trust Fund (TTF swap) funding, this project, which is in the design phase, will use $116,000 of funding to design mill and overlay on sections of Atlantic Avenue including ADA ramps, storm drain repairs, and compliant manhole lids and rims. Roadway improvements will be completed along two disjointed segments; Morris Avenue to Arkansas Avenue and Massachusetts Avenue to Rhode Island Avenue.

In Cumberland County, specifically in the City of Vineland, the West Avenue, Landis Avenue to Chestnut Avenue project was authorized for $1.2 million. The project, which is in the construction phase, calls for roadway mill and overlay within the existing right-of-way. In addition, the project calls for the removal and replacement of concrete items, such as curbs or other drainage features, and rehabilitation of the existing storm sewer infrastructure, as needed. The second project, also in the construction phase is the Cumberland County Systemic High Friction Surface Treatment Program – HRRR. This $2.3 million Local Safety Program project will reduce the risk of run-off-the-road crashes along 18 curves along 6 high risk rural roads (HRRRs) throughout the County. High friction surface treatment refers to the application of a thin layer of course stone to the roadway that improves the ability of vehicles to get traction and reduce the chances of skidding when travelling along a curve. The safety improvements to these areas will not only include the high friction surface treatment but also the replacement and upgrade of existing regulatory and warning signage to current design and retro-reflectivity standards within the project’s limits. The third project, FY 2018 Cumberland County Federal Road Program is the largest at $2.6 million. The funding will cover the mill and overlay of various roadways within the existing right-of-way. The roadways included are Route 347 (from Maurice Town Causeway to Cumberland County Line), Union Road (from Mays Landing Road to NJ Route 49), and a stretch of Barretts Run Road (County Route (CR) 661).

In Salem County, the FY 2018 Salem County Mill and Overlay Resurfacing Program is in the design phase. This $43,000 project, authorized in mid-September, will conduct design for the mill and overlay of various roadways in Salem County. Safety improvements will also be made. The roadway selected for FY 2018 is CR 639 Willow Grove Road (from Centerton Road (CR 610) to Alvine Road (CR 655)). The last project recently authorized in the region is Hook Road (CR 551), E. Pittsfield Street to Route 295 – phase one. The $1.1 million project will include the resurfacing of Hook Road from East Pittsfield to I-295 Northbound.

For more information on each project, such as the project sponsor or funding source, please review the FY 2018-2027 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) document, which is available on the TIP webpage.

Public Comment Opportunities: 2019 Public Involvement Plan and Federal Certification

The SJTPO announces the release for public comment of a draft update to its Public Involvement Plan (PIP). The PIP outlines the requirements and best practices the organization will follow to ensure that plans and programs maximize the involvement of the public.

A 55-day public comment period for the draft PIP begins Monday, February 18, 2019 and concludes on Sunday, April 14, 2019. Comments may be submitted via the online comment form (www.sjtpo.org/pip or www.sjtpo.org/public-comment), email (pip@sjtpo.org), mail (782 South Brewster Road, Unit B6, Vineland, NJ 08361), fax (856-794-2549), Facebook (www.facebook.com/SJTPO), or Twitter (twitter.com/SJTPO). Additionally, a public meeting to receive comments is scheduled for Monday, March 25, 2019, beginning at 5:30 PM at Vineland City Hall in the 2nd floor Caucus Room (Directions).

Staff will review comments as they arrive and will address and incorporate the comments into the PIP to the greatest degree reasonably possible. The public comments and SJTPO responses will be included as an appendix in the final PIP.

The final PIP will reflect comments received and will be made available to the Technical Advisory Committee (TAC) in mid-May 2019. The TAC will then make a recommendation to the Policy Board to approve the plan. Once approved, the PIP will be posted to the SJTPO website. This PIP will replace the previously adopted PIP. Staff will begin to use the 2019 PIP to guide public participation efforts. The date of final approval is anticipated to be late-May 2019.

The SJTPO will also participate in a Federal Certification Review in late March 2019. Federal Certification is a multi-agency activity led by the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and Federal Transit Authority (FTA) and is required every four years to assess SJTPO’s transportation planning process for compliance with federal requirements. The certification determination is essential as it is the basis for providing ongoing allocations of federal funds to SJTPO. Staff requests public comments on the current planning process.

A 51-day public comment period for Certification begins on Monday, February 18, 2019 and concludes on Wednesday, April 10, 2019. Comments may be submitted via online comment form (www.sjtpo.org/public-comment), email (certification@sjtpo.org), mail (782 South Brewster Road, Unit B6, Vineland, NJ 08361), fax (856-794-2549), Facebook (www.facebook.com/SJTPO), or Twitter (twitter.com/SJTPO). Additionally, a public meeting is scheduled for Monday, March 25, 2019, beginning at 6:00 PM at Vineland City Hall in the 2nd floor Caucus Room (Directions) to gather comments and answer questions. The public will have the opportunity to speak with representatives from the Federal Highway and Federal Transit Administrations directly.

The SJTPO fully complies with Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and related statutes and regulations in all programs and activities. SJTPO public meetings are always held in ADA accessible facilities and in transit-accessible locations when possible. Individuals who need accessible communication aids and services or other accommodations to participate in programs and activities are invited to make their needs known by calling the SJTPO office at (856) 794-1941. Please provide a 3 business day notice to adequately meet the request.

25 Years, 2 Executive Directors, 1 Mission for South Jersey’s Transportation System

2018 is a momentous year, as it marks South Jersey Transportation Planning Organization’s 25th anniversary as the region’s Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). Prior to its designation in July of 1993, three smaller MPOs served the urbanized areas of southern New Jersey. The idea for the merger was introduced by the leaders of the four counties and made effective under the orders of Governor Jim Florio. The basis of the merger was the idea that one, all-encompassing MPO would benefit from combined federal, state, and local resources, and thus be better able to create a stronger regional approach to solving transportation problems in Atlantic, Cape May, Cumberland, and Salem counties.

Among the first tasks the SJTPO had to address was to create a vision. Mr. Tim Chelius, the founding Executive Director, who retired in 2016, stated, “Our immediate goal was to establish South Jersey as a full partner in the federal transportation planning and capital program process.” To accomplish this feat, SJTPO instituted a Policy Board, which became the governing body of the SJTPO, to comply with new measures within the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA). The Act, which was signed into law in December of 1991 by President George H. W. Bush, made changes to regional planning and policies, including giving more decision-making authority to local elected officials. Mr. Chelius noted the specific stipulations to the Policy Board included, “requiring 8 of 11 Policy Board members to be elected officials to guarantee that critical decisions [were] made at the highest levels.”

As SJTPO’s vision expanded and as years passed, the Organization found much success. On the capital programming side, many new projects were awarded funding. The establishment of a long-range transportation plan and a capital project selection process were readily received by the public. Furthermore, Mr. Chelius recalls when SJTPO was approved by the National Highway Traffic Safety Association (NHTSA) as a grantee to receive funding for the robust series of safety education and enforcement programs SJTPO offered to the public. Mr. Chelius stated, “We did quite a lot of traffic safety advocacy outside of planning and engineering over the years and were recognized as a national leader among MPOs for that.” However, with all the high points also came several low points. Not only did SJTPO experience state shut-downs, there were also project delays and years of insecure federal funding. Mr. Chelius acknowledged the low points and stated, “those [were] part of the game, and we adapted.”

Fast forward to the present and SJTPO is now under the leadership of Ms. Jennifer Marandino. Prior to her role as Executive Director, Ms. Marandino served as Team Leader of Capital Programming & Safety. From the start, Mr. Chelius saw great potential in Ms. Marandino, who began in March of 2011. When asked about retiring and entrusting Ms. Marandino with the Executive Director position he held since the inception of SJTPO, Mr. Chelius stated, “I was very happy Jennifer was named Executive Director. She showed tremendous leadership skills and [was] a fabulous engineer.”

Ms. Marandino transitioned into her new role with ease and strived to make changes that would allow for growth and continued success within the Organization. When asked about significant changes made to the Organization, Ms. Marandino mentioned the addition of two new staff members in the latter half of 2017. Ms. Marandino went on to state, “With the two new hires, we were able to take advantage of the bright young talent within southern New Jersey, with both new staff members receiving their educational degrees from Rowan University.” The addition was even more significant because both hires were women, which was exciting, yet rare in a typically male-dominated profession. Two years into her role and Ms. Marandino already has a clear idea of what she hopes SJTPO can accomplish over the next five years. One major area of improvement Ms. Marandino hopes SJTPO will be successful in achieving is strengthening ties with the public in the four-county region. When further asked about this matter, Ms. Marandino explained, “SJTPO has done a good job publicizing our Safety Educational Outreach programs, led by two retired police officers, but we have not done a great job letting the public know who we are and the valuable role we play in our region.” The need to have the public involved in SJTPO’s affairs is vital because when the public thoroughly understands what SJTPO does and how transportation improvements will help them get to where they need to be more efficiently and safely, they are more likely to support the Organization’s efforts. Moreover, Ms. Marandino hopes SJTPO’s subregional partners will take full advantage of the funding sources available to southern New Jersey. The approximately $11.6 million in funding allocated to the region this year is only available through SJTPO. As an engineer, Ms. Marandino acknowledged, “I get excited for projects; when the years of planning are complete, and the public can start seeing the fruits of our labor.” Related to SJTPO subregional partners and the projects they propose, Ms. Marandino advocates for all future resurfacing projects to include components of safety, with the intent to reduce the number of fatal and serious injury crashes. To reduce crashes, Ms. Marandino stated, “Our regional partners will need to include proven safety countermeasures into their projects, balancing the needs of all users of the system.”

To conclude, over the last 25 years, SJTPO has made great progress in the southern New Jersey region. Much of this success can be attributed to Mr. Chelius, Mr. John Petersack, Ms. Monica Butler, and the late Mr. Chet Ambler, all founding members. These founding members were instrumental figures, who
established a trusted and progressive MPO. Despite Mr. Chelius’ retirement in 2016, he remains in touch with SJTPO staff and aids Ms. Marandino when necessary. Ms. Marandino is grateful to have Mr. Chelius’ guidance because as she notes, “We can continue to learn and grow, regardless of where we are in our career.” After all the changes and growth, both Mr. Chelius and Ms. Marandino are proud that the mission of the Organization has remained a constant: to create a transportation system based on regional collaboration that moves people and goods in a safe and efficient manner.

July 2018 CAC Meeting: Public Involvement Plan (PIP) Update

At the July 30, 2018 Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) meeting, Melissa Melora, Public Outreach Planner at SJTPO, presented on the Public Involvement Plan (PIP) Update. Ms. Melora discussed the purpose of the PIP, which is to outline the requirements and best practices for SJTPO to follow to ensure that plans and programs include the public to the greatest, reasonable degree. Ms. Melora also noted the twelve Federal Guidances SJTPO must adhere to, such as SJTPO must “seek out and consider the needs of the people who are traditionally underserved by the existing transportation system, including low-income and minority households;” SJTPO must “demonstrate explicit consideration and response to public input;” and SJTPO must “comply with federal laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act, Title VI of Civil Rights Act of 1964, and various Executive Orders.” Furthermore, Ms. Melora made note of important dates for the update, as well as the outreach methods SJTPO staff will use to gather public input from the four-county region. At the end of the meeting, attendees were able to provide recommendations on how SJTPO could create a more meaningful and proactive public involvement process.

The above image depicts the schedule for the PIP Update. The update began in late July of 2018 and a completed product is expected to be approved by the SJTPO Policy Board in late March of 2019.

To stay informed on deadlines, upcoming workshops/public meetings, and Draft PIPs, please visit our PIP webpage. You can also get more information about the Citizens Advisory Committee, including meeting agendas and approved minutes, here.

 

Woodstown, Salem County Awarded Safe Routes to School Funding

As a small, relatively dense municipality with areas of significant vehicle traffic, Woodstown Borough Mayor Don Dietrich and Borough Council Members recognized the importance of a complete sidewalk network to ensure pedestrian safety. Although the Borough strived to create a safe, walkable community, especially in the vicinity of its two schools, the Mary S. Shoemaker Elementary School and the Woodstown Middle School, gaps existed due to a lack of funds.

Since pedestrian safety continued to be a significant talking point amongst Woodstown residents, officials applied to the Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Grant program. The program, which is funded through the Federal Highway Administration’s Federal Aid Program and administered by the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) in partnership with SJTPO, is highly competitive, as there are often numerous applicants in need of infrastructure improvements. Nonetheless, the Woodstown Borough Safe Routes to School Grant application was selected, and awarded $237,000 in funding.

The funding will cover the cost of four sidewalk, crosswalk, and signalization improvement projects near the two schools. The Bailey Street (County Route 616) sidewalk is the first of the four projects to be completed. The improvement will complete the gaps in a 1,200-foot-long walkway from Lotus Avenue to the Borough Boundary, the preferred walking path of students living in nearby affordable housing units. The improvement will also include the installation of solar powered, manually activated flashing crossing signals.

The second project is located at the elementary school, where a crosswalk will be installed across East Millbrooke Avenue to deter students from jaywalking. Furthermore, this improvement will include the addition of two ADA (Americans With Disabilities) accessible ramps; a walkway leading towards the main entrance of the school; two solar powered, manually operated flashing school crossing signals; and various warning signs along the roadway.

The Alloway Road (County Route 603) sidewalk is the third project location. Currently, a 200-foot gap exists in the 610-foot-long walkway from Bailey Street to Liberty Avenue. The objective is to eliminate the gap to improve walkability in the area, especially as 14 of the 60 units in the Freedom Village subdivision house students. The existing crosswalks at Bailey Street and Alloway Road are ADA compliant, as they were recently improved by the Salem County Road Department.

The final improvement project addressed by the grant is located on Old Salem Road. There is a 380-foot gap in the 790-foot-long walkway situated on the west side of the road from Bailey Street to Liberty Avenue. Much like Alloway Road, Old Salem Road is used by students residing in the Freedom Village subdivision. Due to the existing gap in the sidewalk, students walk on the roadway and often jaywalk. These behaviors create a safety concern, as the area is heavily trafficked during the morning and evening rush hours, which coincide with the opening times of the schools and the end of after school activities.

Images of the improvements will be posted to SJTPO’s Twitter and Facebook accounts, when they are available.

 

SJTPO Celebrates 25 Years

South Jersey Transportation Planning Organization is celebrating its 25th anniversary as the region’s Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO). SJTPO was founded on a vision that the region would be better served together than by the three smaller organizations that preceded it. In July of 1993, these organizations and the region came together to form the SJTPO. This has allowed for a much stronger, more united approach to resolving transportation issues in Atlantic, Cape May, Cumberland, and Salem counties.

As a result of the solid groundwork laid by our founding members, SJTPO has made great progress in the region over the last 25 years. We have worked to develop strong partnerships within and outside of the region, create economic opportunities through infrastructure investments, give citizens a forum to voice their concerns, monitor and improve congestion and air quality in the region, and improve safety for all roadway users through both infrastructure improvements and an extensive array of public education programs. While our region has grown and changed, the mission of the Organization has not: to create a transportation system based on regional collaboration that moves people and goods in a safe and efficient manner.

We are proud to have achieved this milestone and look forward to the years to come and all of the opportunities that lie ahead for our region. We would like to recognize and thank our partners who play a vital role in the everyday operations and successes of the Organization. Also, be sure to look for #SJTPOTurns25 on Facebook and Twitter, as we celebrate this momentous event.

– SJTPO Staff

April 2018 CAC Meeting: Review of Technical Studies

At the April 30, 2018 Citizens Advisory Committee (CAC) meeting, SJTPO staff presented on current and upcoming technical studies, as well as internal efforts. One of the six current technical studies mentioned was the Ocean Drive (CR 621) Upgrades and Bridge Improvements Local Concept Development Study. Jennifer Marandino, the project manager, indicated that the study was initiated by Cape May County for three main bridges located along the Ocean Drive (CR 621) Causeway. Ms. Marandino went on to explain that the study was a significant undertaking for SJTPO, as it is one of the most expensive studies ever managed by SJTPO, costing over $1,000,000. To learn more about the study, please visit the project’s website.

After discussion on current studies, SJTPO staff offered an overview of seven upcoming technical studies. One of the studies noted was the Regional Bicycle and Pedestrian Trail Network – Communications and Marketing Plan. Alan Huff, the project manager, stated that SJTPO is eager to begin the study, as it aligns with the goal established in the 2016 regional transportation plan, Transportation Matters, “to develop and implement a vision for a regional trail network to connect major attractions within the region and neighboring regions.” The consultant for the study, TransPro Consulting, LLC., in partnership with the New Jersey Bike and Walk Coalition and Kayla Creative are anticipated to begin the project in June 2018.

The last topic on the agenda was to discuss internal efforts to be completed by staff members. One noteworthy effort is an update to the 2010 Pubic Involvement Plan (PIP). Melissa Melora, the Public Outreach Planner will manage this task. At the July 30, 2018 CAC meeting, SJTPO will present on public involvement, requirements, current practices, and hear from CAC members and the public on what they hope to see in the updated plan.

To stay informed on SJTPO technical studies, please visit our RFP webpage. You can also get more information about the Citizens Advisory Committee, as well as meeting agendas and approved minutes, here.

Over $13 Million in Local Safety Projects Advance for Funding

Through the Local Safety Program, SJTPO works with state and local agencies to address roadway safety issues by funding targeted safety improvements in the four-county SJTPO region. In fiscal year (FY) 2018, $13,009,250 in projects were funded through the federal Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP), which aims to reduce the number of fatalities and serious injuries (F&SI) on public roads through a data-driven, strategic approach to improving highway safety.

A total of sixteen project applications were submitted throughout the region to the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT). Once submitted, the applications went through a rigorous, multi-step review process by a Technical Review Committee (TRC), comprised of SJTPO staff and NJDOT Staff including Local Aid, the Bureau of Environmental Program Resources, and the Bureau of Traffic Data and Safety. Together, the Committee determined if the proposed improvement would be a good use of local safety dollars by assessing the safety need, that the need was being addressed by the proposed improvements, and that the benefit of the project outweighed the cost. The Committee also assured that the projects aligned with the investment goals jointly established by the FHWA, NJDOT, and the three New Jersey MPOs. The investment goals established by these entities targeted intersection, pedestrian, and lane departure crashes, as these represented the largest number of fatal and serious injury crashes occurring throughout the state.

On March 5, 2018, with only minor modifications, the Committee approved each of the project applications submitted by the SJTPO. Of the applications, one project will take place in Atlantic County, one in Cape May County, twelve in Cumberland County, and two in Salem County. In Atlantic County, safety improvements will focus on lane departure prevention in Egg Harbor Township through the installation of centerline rumble strips at a number of locations. The funding for this improvement project totals $618,195. Safety improvements in Cape May County will also focus on lane departure prevention through the installation of centerline rumble strips on various roadways throughout the County, totaling $736,351. In Cumberland County, ten projects will focus on intersection improvements through the installation of an all-way stop at various locations, primarily in rural areas, totaling $1,104,400. Two additional safety improvement projects in Cumberland County will focus on lane departure improvements at curves through the installation of a high friction surface treatment to the roadway, as well as regulatory and warning signage upgrades. The total funding for these improvements is $4,084,500. In Salem County, a total of $6,465,804 in funds will be allocated for pedestrian and intersection safety improvements in the City of Salem, on Walnut Street at the intersections of Smith Street, Wesley Street, and Church/Belden Street, where pedestrian crashes have occurred. And lastly, in Salem County, crashes at the Six Points intersection, at Garden Road, Parvin Mill Road, and Alvine Road in Pittsgrove Township, will be addressed through the construction of a modern roundabout.

The SJTPO is pleased to report that each of the projects selected by the Technical Review Committee satisfy, and even exceed the annual funding goal of $3,500,000 for the three investment strategies. The SJTPO is also hopeful that these projects, along with its safety educational outreach will help to reduce the number of crashes and fatalities that occur on the region’s roadways each year.

 

A Happy Retirement to John Petersack

At the March Policy Board meeting, Mr. John Petersack, who will retire on March 31, 2018, was recognized by Jennifer Marandino, the Executive Director of the South Jersey Transportation Planning Organization for his service to the Organization over the last 10 years.

Prior to his start in October of 2007, Mr. Petersack worked at the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT), where he amassed a vast knowledge of the federal process, specifically regarding the Transportation Improvement Program (TIP). Furthermore, while at NJDOT, Mr. Petersack served as the liaison between the Department and the three former Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) that served Southern New Jersey. As the liaison, Mr. Petersack was instrumental in merging the three MPOs into a single, more encompassing MPO, now known as the South Jersey Transportation Planning Organization.

Over the course of his time as the part-time Capital Program Specialist, Mr. Petersack was fully committed to SJTPO’s subregional partners. Not only did he impart his knowledge of the federal process onto SJTPO’s partners, he also sought for the allocation of additional federal funds for the region.

It is truly a bittersweet moment to have a founding member of the SJTPO retire, especially as the Organization is celebrating 25 years this year. Nonetheless, all of us here at SJTPO wish Mr. Petersack a happy, healthy, and long retirement.

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