Faced with phenomenal growth in postwar vehicular traffic, the New Jersey State Highway Department mapped out a network of proposed controlled-access highways in 1960. These highways were to supplement the Interstate highways and toll roads already legislated.

One of the routes proposed, the NJ 50 Freeway, was to parallel the existing north-south NJ 50. Beginning at US 30 in Mullica Township, the NJ 50 Freeway was to cross the Atlantic City Expressway (near EXIT 17 and the barrier toll plaza) in Egg Harbor Township, and the proposed east-west NJ 60 Freeway near Mays Landing. Continuing southeast to Dennis Township, the route was to terminate at the Garden State Parkway just south of EXIT 20 (existing NJ 50).

In 1972, the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) described the route as follows:

In addition to providing the stimulus for the development of central Atlantic County, the NJ 50 Freeway will provide a more direct route to the Cape May County shore resorts for travel emanating from the metropolitan areas of Philadelphia-Camden and Trenton.

The NJDOT estimated the cost of the 29-mile-long freeway at $49 million. However, by the mid-1970's, low traffic volumes along the NJ 50 corridor, fiscal austerity, and heightened environmental sensitivity did not appear to justify construction of the freeway.

SOURCES: "New Jersey Builds Better Highways," New Jersey State Highway Department (1961); New Jersey Highway Facts, New Jersey Department of Transportation (1967); Master Plan for Transportation, New Jersey Department of Transportation (1972); "New Jersey Route 55: Administrative Action Final Environmental Impact Statement and Section 4(f) Statement," Federal Highway Administration and New Jersey Department of Transportation (1975).

  • NJ 50 shield by Ralph Herman.


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