New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) officials today announced Route 206 in Princeton will reopen at 8 p.m. tonight, Sunday March 6 after the completion of emergency repairs to the bridge over Stony Brook. A truck detour will remain in place until permanent repairs can be completed.
On Monday, February 22, a parapet collapsed on the southbound side of the historic stone bridge over Stony Brook, just past Quaker Road, near the Hun School and Jasna Plana Country Club. A precast construction barrier was erected on both sides of the bridge to protect the compromised parapet.
While inspecting the parapet and bridge, NJDOT engineers discovered cracks and voids that had developed within the stone arches that support the structure and immediately closed the bridge for emergency repairs. Crews also discovered significant scour at the footing of the bridge. Scour is the removal of sediment such as sand and rocks from around bridge abutments or piers potentially compromising the integrity of a structure.
A portable dam was installed around the footing of the bridge to address the scour. In addition, drainage improvements were made to reduce the impact of potential flooding or water damage due to heavy rains. Finally, the bridge was repaved to ensure a safe driving surface for traffic. Temporary overnight lane closures during off-peak hours may be necessary over the next few weeks and NJDOT will provide advisories before any traffic pattern changes.
The bridge now has a posted weight limit of 20 tons with a truck detour in place. NJDOT expects to begin permanent repairs this summer.
The following truck detour will be in place for both directions of Route 206:
- Traffic on Route 206 southbound will make a right onto Georgetown Franklin Road/CR 518, a left onto Hopewell Princeton Road and a right onto Route 206 Southbound.
- Traffic on 206 northbound will make left onto Carter Road, a right onto Georgetown Franklin Road/CR 518, and a left onto Route 206 northbound.
NJDOT will be using Variable Message Signs to provide advance notification to motorists of traffic pattern changes associated with the work. The precise timing of the work is subject to change due to weather or other factors.
In response to this continued detour, Hopewell Borough discussed at Thursday night’s council meeting that it will be making some adjustments at the corner of Princeton Avenue and Route 518. Because trucks need to take a wide turn at that intersection, they have not been triggering the traffic light so the Borough is looking into adjusting the stop further from the corner.