Frequently Asked Questions

  • Why is this corridor roadway improvement project necessary?

    CR 537 is a major east-west transportation corridor serving regional travel needs between Burlington, Monmouth and Ocean Counties. The roadway serves as a connector between several regional routes, namely US Route 9, NJ Route 33 Freeway, NJ Route 33 Business, NJ Route 34, NJ Route 79, and Interstate Route 195. The project’s limits along CR 537 are between Sentinel Road and the US Route 9 Interchange within the Township of Freehold in Monmouth County, NJ. The corridor has substandard design elements, a history of safety concerns, and suffers from traffic congestion and delays due to inadequate roadway capacity. Solutions were developed to improve safety and reduce congestion while still taking into account practical measures to avoid, minimize, or mitigate potential impacts to the natural environment.

  • What is the schedule for the County Route 537, West Main Street, Corridor Roadway Improvements Project?

    The following is the anticipated schedule:

    Project Schedule (Phases)

    Local Concept Development (LCD) Phase 2011 – 2014 completed
    Local Preliminary Engineering (LPE) Phase 2015 – 2019 completed
    Final Design (FD) Phase 2020 – 2023
    Construction Phase 2023 – 2025

    Final Design – Project Schedule (Major Milestones)

    Environmental Permits Fall 2021
    ROW Availability / Easements Spring 2022
    Completion of Final Design Phase Summer 2023

    Final Design – Anticipated Community Involvement Schedule

    Local Officials Meetings February 2021, Winter 2022
    Community Stakeholders Meetings September 2021, Spring 2022
    Public Information Center Meeting Spring 2023
  • What is the existing condition of the corridor roadway?

    The LCD Study and LPE phase, as well as engineering findings to date, have revealed the following:

    Based on the roadway classification and required design speed as per AASHTO and MUTCD design guidelines, the Monmouth County Route 537 corridor has traffic operational deficiencies, safety deficiencies, and contains numerous substandard design elements, including:

    • Lack of shoulders along the entire length;
    • Substandard auxiliary (acceleration and deceleration) lanes;
    • Substandard vertical geometry at numerous locations;
    • Inadequate pavement and curb returns for turning movements at intersections and into various business/shopping complexes along corridor;
    • Much of the corridor is not bicycle or pedestrian compatible, lacking sidewalk connectivity.
  • Does Monmouth County plan to widen the roadway?

    The LCD Study results determined that there is a need to widen certain parts of the corridor roadway and provide turning lanes at certain intersections for safety and to relieve traffic congestion. The outside lane will be widened with a shoulder to accommodate bicycles.

  • How will the project benefit pedestrians and bicyclists?

    As part of the LCD Study and the LPE Phase, the project purpose and need for improvements included various modes of transportation that were taken into consideration regarding the proposed corridor roadway improvements which included pedestrians, cyclists, transit, vehicular, and commercial types of activity and access. As part of the Study, the project team received input from the local officials and community stakeholders to understand the pedestrian and bicycle mobility and access needs. Bike and pedestrian improvements are part of the proposed design plans. The outside lane will be widened with a shoulder to accommodate bicycles. Please see plan displays by clicking Maps and Plans under About the Project on the home page main menu or click here.

  • Have the project's improvements been decided?

    During the LCD Study and the LPE Phase the roadway and intersection improvements were developed and, with resolution of support by local and County officials, the corridor roadway improvements have been determined and the design plans are currently being refined. Some of the final design elements are still to be determined such as lighting, signage, landscaping and construction staging. The County of Monmouth and cooperating agencies will continue to seek community input on the design plans and proposed transportation improvements during the Final Design (FD) phase.

  • What is an LCD Study?

    A Local Concept Development (LCD) Study is the first phase of the Local Capital Delivery Process for transportation improvements programmed through the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA). The County of Monmouth filed an application with the NJTPA, who oversees this phase of the project, Federal funding was received to conduct the LCD Study. During this Study Phase, a well-defined and well-justified Purpose and Need Statement was developed focusing on the need to improve safety and maintain traffic flow in the corridor. The LCD Study Phase elements also included data collection; coordination with the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT), Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), community stakeholders, and permitting agencies; the development of a reasonable number of sensible and practical conceptual alternatives; the determination of a Preliminary Preferred Alternative (PPA); and investigation of all aspects of the project. These aspects included environmental, Right-of-Way (ROW), access, utilities, design, community involvement, constructability, and cost analysis. (See NJTPA LCD flowchart.)

    Additional Study information can be found in the Community Outreach Documents related to the LCD Study Phase of the project (click here).

  • What is the LPE Phase?

    The Local Preliminary Engineering (LPE) Phase involved performing engineering and environmental tasks required to obtain an approved National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) document for the project. Right of Way (ROW) and environmental impacts for the proposed project were identified along with the required permits. Local officials meetings, a community stakeholders meeting, and a public information center meeting were also conducted during this phase for the design development and environmental documentation completion. For the recommended refined PPA, the Township of Freehold passed a Resolution of Support.

    The tasks conducted during the LPE Phase consisted of:

    • Technical Environmental Studies (including Section 106 and Section 4(f) Evaluation)
    • NEPA Document (Categorical Exclusion)
    • Development of design level base plans for improvements
    • Utility discovery and verification
    • Geotechnical studies (soil borings, cores and analysis) for foundation and pavement design
    • Preliminary drainage work
    • Structural studies that document the structural selection process and the recommended structure and aesthetic treatments for cantilevered sidewalk along Route 537 bridge over NJ Route 33
    • Access impact evaluation
    • Development of property acquisition/right-of-way cost estimates and project cost estimates

    Further LPE Phase project information can be found in the Community Outreach documents related to the LPE phase of the project (click here).

  • What is the FD Phase?

    The Final Design (FD) phase involves finalizing the roadway geometrics and preparing the construction contract documents, including plans, specifications and construction cost estimates. Access modifications are completed in the FD phase along with property acquisition and easements of the necessary Right-of-Way (ROW) for construction of the project. The required environmental permits for construction will also be obtained during this phase. To inform and to encourage community input, a community stakeholders meeting and public information center meeting will be held during this phase.

    The tasks to be conducted during the FD phase consist of, but are not limited to:

    • Geotechnical investigation (soil borings with analysis) for structural and SWM design
    • Utility relocation coordination discussions with companies
    • Develop landscaping and aesthetic elements
    • Secure environmental permits
    • Right of Way (ROW) negotiations, acquisitions and easements
    • Develop maintenance of traffic and construction staging plans
    • Complete Final Design engineering technical plans
  • How will the project affect the environment?

    NJTPA’s Local Capital Project Delivery Program’s LCD Study phase includes an Environmental Screening of the project limits to identify regulated resources such as noise & air quality, ecological constraints (floodplains, wetlands, threatened and endangered species, etc.), cultural resources, section 4(f), hazardous materials and landfills, socioeconomics, and environmental justice.

    During this project’s LCD Study phase, environmental screening identified potential environmental issues for further investigation in the LPE phase and based on the recommended PPA, recommended NEPA document of Categorical Exclusion.

    During the Local Preliminary Engineering (LPE) Phase, environmental and cultural resource studies continued. The results of the environmental screening and cultural resource studies, which are part of the project schedule, were presented at the community stakeholders meetings and public information center meetings. Environmental mitigation and permitting are part of the Final Design (FD) Phase. Community involvement is an integral and on-going part of this process through all phases of the project, including into the Construction phase.

  • Why get involved?

    The community, whether individual residents, business owners or civic organizations have been very helpful in assisting Monmouth County in the development of the proposed corridor roadway and intersection improvements together with engaging public opinion from the general public at previous public meetings. The County and Project Team are very interested in knowing how the local community uses the corridor roadway, and how the public sees the proposed improvement design plans. Community Outreach during the planning phases and now final design phase is an essential part of the transportation improvement delivery process and we encourage the community to participate in the CR 537 corridor roadway improvements project.

  • Why attend the public meeting?

    Public meetings are a good way to understand the project status and offer suggestions towards a successful project.  Attending the meeting is the best way to stay involved and get answers first hand with the Project Team present. If you are unable to attend a meeting, you can keep tabs on project developments by visiting this Project Website and reviewing the meeting reports and PowerPoint presentations.  If you still have questions, Project Team and the County Project Manager can be reached by using the online contact form.

  • How can I stay informed or offer suggestions?

    Monmouth County and the cooperating agencies of NJTPA and NJDOT are committed to developing transportation improvements that balance transportation needs, the environment, community concerns and cost. As part of the Community Outreach effort, numerous meetings were held in early phases of the project and meetings will be held during the Final Design phase to share project information and obtain input.

    Please

  • What if I have other questions or concerns about the project?

    Monmouth County and the cooperating agencies of NJTPA and NJDOT encourage community members to voice their concerns and contribute suggestions to the Project Team. To submit questions or to provide input, please email info@cr537westmainstreet.com or attend one of the public outreach meetings or contact the County Project Manager:

    Contact Information

    Robert Strang-Wolf, P.E.
    Monmouth County Project Manager
    732-431-7760 x7753

    info@cr537westmainstreet.com
    Joseph Ettore, P.E.
    Monmouth County Engineer

    Monmouth County Division of Engineering
    Hall of Records Annex, 3rd floor
    1 East Main Street
    Freehold, NJ  07728

Project Contact

Robert Strang-Wolf, P.E.
Monmouth County Project Manager

Joseph Ettore, P.E.
Monmouth County Engineer

Monmouth County Division of Engineering
Hall of Records Annex, 3rd Floor
1 East Main Street
Freehold, NJ 07728
732-431-7760
info@cr537westmainstreet.com

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