Middle Township pushes for light at Fulling Mill Road

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RIO GRANDE – Mayor Dan Lockwood last month urged the state to move on installing a traffic signal at Route 47 South and Fulling Mill Road in Rio Grande.

A traffic signal at that intersection has been planned for six years, and the state recommended in 2007 that the project move forward.

"This intersection has been a continued safety hazard for many years and remains to be so to this day to residents and visitors to Middle Township," Lockwood said in an Oct. 15 letter to Jeff DeGroff, an engineer with the state Department of Transportation.

Lockwood pointed out that the township may have athletic fields put in at the Robert “Okie” Wisting Recreation Complex, near that intersection. The Cape Express Soccer Club could develop part of the complex.

"These fields, as well as other improvements, would be used by many children, families and seniors throughout the township, and at times throughout the state," the letter from Lockwood reads. "Our concerns remain for the safety of ... all of the residents, families, visitors and children when entering or exiting Fulling Mill Road."

In September 2006, Middle Township Committee passed a resolution calling for a traffic signal at that intersection in Rio Grande.

State Sen. Jeff Van Drew is recommending a resolution be passed by Middle Township Committee that points out that it’s been a long wait for the traffic signal, safety issues exit at that intersection and requests the state move quickly with the project.

Van Drew said he would take the resolution to the state Department of Transportation.

Lockwood’s letter also lists correspondence about the project over a six-year period, which included Middle Township committing to take care of paying the annual energy expenses with the traffic signal.

In September, Dawn Stimmel, Middle Township’s administrative assistant, talked with DeGroff, who said that other departments had to take part in the project because a left-turn lane heading north on Route 47 onto Fulling Mill Road was being considered. The state had been waiting results of geometrics and drainage, according to the letter.

"Whenever any information or authorizations were needed from the township, they were provided in a timely manner," Lockwood said in the letter. "We are requesting that the Route 47 South and Fulling Mill Road traffic signal project be expedited for the safety of our citizens and visitors."

Lockwood’s letter also requests a project timeline and monthly status reports.

Van Drew, Cape May County Engineer Dale Foster and Cape May County Freeholders also received copies of the letter.

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