Major Milestone for Storm-Damaged County Road Reconstruction
February 14, 2012
Six months to the day after the August storm that ripped away sections of a half-dozen county roadways in western Cumberland County, two of the three remaining construction projects were completed Tuesday afternoon.
Construction crews wrapped up work on Beebe Run Road in Hopewell Township and Finley Road on the Hopewell/Upper Deerfield line, and for the first time since the morning of August 14th, the roads were opened to traffic.
Completing the work in just six months on these two roads as well as two other county roads covered by the Federal Highway Administration was a major accomplishment that qualifies the county to receive 100 percent reimbursement.
“The August 14th storm followed two weeks later by Hurricane Irene dealt us a difficult blow,” said Freeholder Director, Carl Kirstein. “But the incredible response from everyone involved allowed us to make this deadline and save our residents from bearing a huge financial burden.”
After today, Harmony Road in Hopewell Township is the only storm-related project remaining. County officials anticipate a reopening in mid-summer.
Reconstruction plans began almost immediately in the hours following the August 14th storm. West Park Drive on the Bridgeton/Upper Deerfield line was the first to reopen in late September. Willow Grove Road in Vineland, which was damaged in Hurricane Irene, reopened in November. Holding Road in Hopewell reopened in December. Gum Tree Corner Road in Stow Creek reopened last week.
Harmony and Holding Roads are not covered by the Federal Highway Administration. 75 percent of their construction costs will be reimbursed by FEMA.
“Our county team did some amazing work over the past six months,” said Freeholder Tony Surace, Public Works Chairman. “From the initial damage cleanups to securing federal funding and finally getting these roads open today, we can be very proud of the effort.”
Officials say lane closures can be expected on Finley and Beebe Run Roads to allow the contractor to put finishing touches on the projects.