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Letter to the Editor: What's Gloucester Twp. Got Against Route 42 Westbound?

A Laurel Springs man laments the difficulty he has getting to Philadelphia and points west via Route 42.

Dear Editor:

I moved to Gloucester Township in 2011 in part for the location and its accessibility to so many places. But I still have roots and conduct business in my former area of Marlton, Voorhees and Cherry Hill, which means I drive Route 295 North regularly.  

Why is it so easy to get onto Route 42 eastbound, but getting on 42 westbound to go to Philly or to get to Routes 130/295 seems to require the patience of Job or an illegal act?  

I live near the municipal complex, so Coles Road is my main access to 42.  What planner designed the ridiculous one-way stretch next to Skeeter's, requiring a left turn onto Tice Avenue and then a right onto Erial Road to wait for a light to change at a busy three-way intersection? When traffic at the light is backed up to the Walgreens entrance, it’s a tough right turn to make and chances are you’ll have to wait an additional light cycle simply to get on the Pike northbound. A year after moving here, I still haven’t figured out what’s so bad about driving straight out to the Black Horse Pike without negotiating this stupid patch of grass. I see an unused stretch of “shoulder” alongside the pub. 

Recently, I thought I’d avoid this stupid intersection by taking Chews Landing Road down to Somerdale Road, making a left onto Old Black Horse Pike, then coming out on the Pike near Anchor Pool, only to discover it’s illegal to make a left turn from the Pike onto 42 West. The ramp on isn’t curved noticeably to accept cars traveling northbound down 168 in the other direction. So what gives? Is traffic in that spot so heavy the township doesn’t think drivers can safely make a left turn onto the ramp? Newsflash: It isn’t. I was forced to drive up a little further and make—you guessed it—a left turn, into the self-storage complex, in order to turn around. Of course, there’s a "No U-Turn" sign there, but I made a K-turn instead so as not to violate the warning.

So if I want to go east on 42, I simply make a left turn off Coles Road onto the on ramp. If for some crazy reason I’d like to head toward Philly or the region’s major non-toll North-South highway, I have to either negotiate around a nonsensical one-way street and useless island of grass, or make an illegal left turn. What, exactly, does the township have against Route 42 westbound?

Gary Frisch
Laurel Springs

Tom Catz May 28, 2012 at 03:48 AM
Yes, I realized after submitting this letter that 42 is marked North and South, but one way goes toward Philly (west) and the other toward AC (east) so for all practical purposes I think of it as West and East.
Ric May 28, 2012 at 11:56 PM
Paulie, you poor fellow, thinking NJ built a circle just to irritate you! Do not feel that way. NJ installed a traffic circle on Cinnaminson Avenue in Cinnaminson and is threatening to install a second circle on Riverton Road.
Paul J. DiBartolo May 29, 2012 at 11:57 AM
Ricky...grow up:-) Really, then people will start to take you seriously. I thought of responding to you in kind, Ricky, but then I thought better of it and decided not to waste my time.
Ric May 29, 2012 at 02:41 PM
Whatever you say, Jack,
Paul J. DiBartolo May 29, 2012 at 06:55 PM
That's funny, I use my name and picture and you're calling me Jack. Again, I'll pass on further encouraging you.

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