JACKSON – Long-awaited improvements on Wright-DeBow Road will finally be made, with a completion date expected in the fall.
On April 11, the Jackson Township Council awarded Earle Asphalt of Jackson a $701,513.13 contract to reconstruct the road. Earle came in $20,000 lower than the next of the five bids received: Asphalt Paving Systems, $721,521.00; A Team Concrete, $781,456.00; Black Rock Enterprises, $825,636.89; and Bil-Jim Construction Co., $864,305.38.
The reconstruction will stretch sixth-tenths of a mile, from County Road 537 (Monmouth Road) and not quite reach Cheryl Drive, ending at a stream culvert.
Municipal engineer Daniel Burke said the reconstruction of the road’s pavement will provide much-needed drainage improvements, as well as curbs and road widening. The road services both commercial and residential properties.
Last year, the project was bid out and awarded. However, since Gov. Chris Christie and the State Senate couldn’t agree on a plan to fund the state’s Transportation Trust Fund, the governor last summer ordered the shutdown of all state-funded road work until a solution was agreed upon. Projects that were deemed essential were permitted to continue.
The Wright-DeBow project was on that chopping block. However, Christie and the Senate finally agreed to the 23-cent-per gallon tax hike while eventually eliminating the estate tax.
However, that was just one delay. Burke said the relocation of Jersey Central Power & Light utility poles was “time consuming,” as was the receipt of NJ Department of Environmental Protection permits.
Council President Kenneth Bressi called the road project “long overdue,” and said he is glad to see the work finally starting.