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In short, is a commerce blog featuring stories on new retail developments, roadway improvements, and interesting area events all with the goal to inform and promote the towns along Rt 42.

250,000 people.  If recognized as an official Metropolitan area, the towns along Route 42 would be in the top 200, and ahead of Topeka.   But multiple towns and multiple counties can make it tough to define a cohesive region.

And while many areas of our economy are still struggling after the recent downturn, there are signs that things are turning around… this is very evident along the Rt 42 corridor in South Jersey.

From the northern start of Rt 42 in Bellmawr, to the southern-most end in Williamstown and Winslow…   business and retail construction can only be described as booming.

  • Bellmawr: The true gateway into the Rt 42 region, construction is well under way in the 295/76/42 Direct Connection Project, and the ongoing “What is going on at the landfill”question is still a very much discussed topic.
  • Deptford: The center of our retail universe, with the mall, national restaurant chains, and two new Walmarts
  • Gloucester Twp: Construction on a large outlet mall has started, in the heart of Rt 42.  The township also has several commercial districts including Blackwood-Clementon Rd and Cross Keys.
  • Washington Twp: Large mix of national and local retail/commercial business, and the Egg Harbor Rd Reconstruction looks like its nearing completion.
  • Monroe Twp:  New and remodeled businesses and housing developments are popping,
  • Winslow: A recently completed sewer line connection has jump-started all types of development in Winslow, and development along the Winslow side of Cross-Keys Road has kicked in to high gear, featuring a large Carmax facility.

Primarily the site will be quick photo posts…  but here are all of the planned content types.

  • Photo Posts – Very short posts about a business/retail changes or interesting facts.
  • Blog Posts – Featured longer blog posts with more in-depth content.  Also targeting interviews with key people in the region.
  • Forums – User generated content from the forums.  Users are free to discuss Business and Retail, and the suggestions may turn into blog posts.
  • Events – Under the “pro commerce” umbrella, at times I will highlight interesting events  that could lead to a larger positive impact for the towns, such as free concerts or wine tasting events.

No Sports.  No politics   Right off the bat, take away these two most debated online /radio topics.    (Well, politics where its related to a commerce change).  If you want to complain about Ruben Amaro’s direction for the Phillies, or you think your mayor is a no-show leader… well maybe I care a little, but this isn’t the place for it!

Lastly, who am I?

I am Mark Matthews, previously a resident of Bellmawr for most of my life, and recently (2014) we moved to Deptford NJ.   I was a community blogger for several years writing about the towns surrounding Bellmawr, with a strong focus on Bellmawr and the landfill (much of the information about the Bellmawr landfill that made it to the public came from me).  I’ve blogged for the Courier Post, as the Bellmawr Blogger, and most recently Cleary’s Notebook.

I’ve jumped around a little, but is the first time I’ve had a consistent theme.  It’s a subject matter I truly enjoy and with the move to Deptford… it all just clicked “hmmm this could be a pretty good idea”.   We’ve settled into our new home and I’ve cleared most of my free-time schedule, so now its just a matter of posting…  a key element.  🙂

So please check us out regularly, “Like” our Facebook page, and participate in the forums!