FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 17, 2017
Monmouth County Extends County Route 537 through Fort Monmouth
Route returns to public use
EATONTOWN, NJ – Monmouth County has announced the official opening of County Route 537 through the former Fort Monmouth property. The road connects State Highway 35 (Main Street) in Eatontown to Oceanport Avenue (County Route 11) in Oceanport. When the Base Closure and Realignment (BRAC) Commission shuttered Fort Monmouth in 2011, the road was closed as well.
“Since 2005, I’ve been involved with the Fort Monmouth revitalization efforts and this is a positive next step in the planned redevelopment of Fort Monmouth, an initiative which will greatly impact the quality of life and overall living standard for all County residents,” said Freeholder Director Lillian G. Burry, who serves as the County freeholder representative on the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority (FMERA) board. “In addition, the opening will ease traffic congestion between Eatontown and Oceanport, another welcome benefit for our residents.”
In preparation of the opening, Monmouth County Public Works and Engineering personnel worked to return the approximately two-mile connector thoroughfare to public use. The County installed temporary fencing, new signage and repaired traffic signals. The County also made drainage system repairs and improvements, realigned, reconfigured and repaved sections of the road. The road now meets the County’s road specifications and it will be maintained by Monmouth County.
Along the Eatontown section of County Route 537, referred to as Avenue of Memories, existing monuments and the “Johnson Gate” arches at the State Highway 35 entrance have been repaired and cleaned. Avenue of Memories is named for the monuments and trees placed in memory of U.S. Army Signal Corps soldiers killed in action during foreign wars.
There is video surveillance along the entire corridor, which will be patrolled by the Oceanport and Eatontown police departments with assistance from the Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office.
“I would like to express my personal appreciation to Monmouth County for the focus and attention paid by everyone involved with this project to reopen this roadway to the public and especially to the residents of Monmouth County,” said James V. Gorman, Chair, Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority.
“Extending County Route 537 will alleviate traffic congestion on area roadways, and allow all to see the potential development and business opportunities that the former Fort now affords,” said Freeholder Thomas A. Arnone.
According to Freeholder Serena DiMaso, liaison to the Monmouth County Improvement Authority, “We are excited about this crucial step in the revitalization of Fort Monmouth. Financing through the Monmouth County Improvement Authority coupled with the County’s AAA bond rating, made this this project possible.”
FMERA’s goal is to develop 1,585 housing units; 300,000 square feet of non-profit, civic and government and educational space; 500,000 square feet for retail; and 2 million square feet dedicated to offices, research and commercial uses.
# # #