Warwick Turnpike bridge project to resume

Project was delayed by utility line relocation


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BY ANN GENADER

The Passaic County Public Works $1.1 bridge reconstruction project on Warwick Turnpike – dormant for a month – was scheduled to resume this week. The project had to be halted while utility line relocation occurred. Cablevision wires were moved.

Orange and Rockland Electric Company had previously finished installation of the required utility poles and Warwick Valley Telephone Company installed new wires and will return to complete their work when the Cablevision work is completed.

Drivers will have to continue to deal with one-lane traffic for a couple of months more while contractor Reovax Contracting of Newark continues work. The first half on the project was completed on July 31.

It was necessary to hold off continued construction work while the utility lines were moved.

Drivers have been frustrated with resulting traffic slow-downs between White Road and Lakeshore Drive, especially during commuters’ hours. Traffic control since May allowed an alternating traffic pattern for the drivers.

The Warwick Turnpike culvert (county structure 1600-447) was originally built in 1936. It consists of concrete encased steel stringers and concrete deck superstructure supported on concrete footings. The clear span between the abutments is approximately 17 feet. The culvert was declared functionally obsolete with curb to curb width being too narrow. Engineers said in 2014 it had deteriorated beyond repair and required replacement.

The reconstruction project began in May. The cost of the project is being partially funded by was $640,000 in New Jersey Department of Transportation aid from 2016.

The structurally obsolete 17-foot bridge, over 80 years old, will also be widened, according to the engineering plans.

An early-on proposal to put in a temporary bridge at the start of the project was scrapped because this area bordering Abraham S. Hewitt State Forest and Bearfort Mountain was too environmentally challenging. A 17-mile detour via Clinton Road was seen as impractical.

Both State Parklands (Green Acres) are on upstream and downstream sides.
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