If you travel on the Black Horse Pike by Hamilton Mall in Mays Landing, it appears that the long-running road construction project there should be done soon.

Hopefully.

As someone who drives past the mall six or seven days a week, I've gotten to know those orange construction barrels at the now-smaller turn lane for Acme and Homegoods pretty well. After all, they've been there for about a year now (does anyone want to chip in so we can buy some anniversary balloons to decorate them?).

I look at it this way: they've been there so long they predate perhaps hundreds of children that have been born over the past 12 months in South Jersey.

I know, I'm being a bit overdramatic. But still -- this road work seems to move rapidly with dozens of workers on-scene and then they all disappear for days or weeks at a time. Then they all come back. Then they disappear again. Then they all come back. Seems kinda odd (I know this isn't the only road project around).

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This saga began in the summer of 2020 when work began on improving the Black Horse Pike between Route 50 and the mall. According to the NJDOT, work was necessary as the pavement was in poor condition, the concrete median out by the college was substandard, the road usually flooded at Cologne Avenue every time there was a storm, and the traffic signals and sidewalks needed to be modernized.

Road work on the Black Horse Pike in Hamilton Township NJ - Photo: Chris Coleman
Road work on the Black Horse Pike in Hamilton Township NJ - Photo: Chris Coleman
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I am not a traffic or highway engineer, but it appears that most of that work (at a cost of about $11 million) is just about done and the estimated completion date of this fall seems to be holding, more or less.

Road work on the Black Horse Pike in Hamilton Township NJ - Photo: Chris Coleman
Road work on the Black Horse Pike in Hamilton Township NJ - Photo: Chris Coleman
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The NJDOT also says about the Pike,

As part of a larger effort to improve traffic operations on the Route 40/322 corridor through Hamilton, Egg Harbor and Pleasantville, NJDOT is undertaking a separate project to install adaptive signal technology which will improve travel time by automatically adapting signals to changing traffic conditions. Fiber optic conduit/cable and upgraded traffic signal components will be installed as part of this project to accelerate the overall deployment of the adaptive system.

That means putting up with those orange construction barrels will make driving much smoother in the near future.

But I'll miss 'em when they go.

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