As county and municipal officials were putting the final touches on the new portion of Meadow Road just before 2 p.m. on June 4, Steve and Susyn Kraham approached the busy intersection, stopping to see whether it was really true.
The drive for the couple, who live in Canal Pointe, has been a routine. Leaving from their development, they have taken the Meadow Road overpass up to the beginning of the construction zone to monitor the progress of the reconstruction progress over the last year.
Much to the couple’s excitement, it was true: for the first time, they did not have to turn left onto the Carnegie Center connector road, where the old Meadow Road had curved off.
The couple wanted to be among the first residents to drive along the steady connection right to Bear Brook Road and to their daughter’s house in the Estates at Princeton Junction.
"It makes it easier to babysit," said Steve Kraham. His wife added, "My daughter said to call her to go to Whole Foods as soon as the road re-opened."
The couple aren’t the only residents who anxiously awaited the completion of the project. They were joined by Dan McCarthy, a resident of the Estates at Princeton Junction, who also pulled up in his car to attend the ribbon-cutting ceremony to celebrate the opening of the road.
"He has been coming here every day," said Mayor Shing-Fu Hsueh, who was joined by Township Council members George Borek, Charles Morgan, and Diane Ciccone as well as township engineer Francis Guzik and Pat Ward, the director of community development.
The first phase of the Meadow Road reconstruction project extended Meadow Road to the Carnegie Center Connector Road and Meadow Road overpass, eliminating the old curvature of the road. The project also included the reconstruction and widening of the roadway from the Princeton Presbyterian Church in front of Duck Pond Park out to Carnegie Center Drive. Installation of a new gravity sanitary sewer line from the Meadow Lane apartments to Clarksville Road was also done as part of the first phase of the project.
The sewer line will service the garden apartment complex under construction on Clarksville Road, and represents the first phase in the eventual decommissioning of the Duck Pond Run pump station. The flow for this gravity line will feed into the D and R Canal Interceptor. The existing Old Meadow Road, coming from Route One to the Meadow Lanes apartments, will end in a cul-de-sac for access to the apartments. The remaining old Meadow Road will be preserved as a service road.
A sidewalk on the east side of Meadow Road, from Carnegie Center Drive to Bear Brook Road, was also included in the project. Striping for dedicated bike lanes from Carnegie Center Drive to a point south of the Estates at Princeton Junction was also completed.
In the future, officials hope to extend the road widening and bike lanes south to the Clarksville Road intersection. The reconstruction of that intersection will include the installation of traffic signals with dedicated turn lanes. But that work is the responsibility of the developer who is building the garden apartments on Clarksville Road. West Windsor officials say that the work at the intersection has begun and is expected to be complete by the end of the year.