While all the attention in Bellmawr seems to go to the larger Direct Connection project, it’s younger brother “Missing Moves” is just chugging along making significant progress.
Yesterday a big milestone was met when construction crews installed the first horizontal crossbeams… going big with a placement across Bellmawr’s Creek Road!
Yesterday’s steel placement is on the “295 North heading to 42 South” side of the roadway. The route will come up from the 295 North roadway to ramps which will quickly carry cars up over top of Creek Rd, heading on a path alongside the landfill.
Scroll down for photos of the entire Missing Moves project, the new exit/entrance at 42 North, and the Creek Road Bridge! Some photos were taken late September, others just yesterday.
Missing Moves – $180 Million Project
Honestly… they are making amazing progress on this project. Everyone is so quick to point out the faults and delays over at the Direct Connection project, but really no one is commenting how quickly development is happening at Missing Moves.
The contract for missing moves was literally awarded only 18 months ago, and very quickly all of the core support columns were constructed. Well actually, I think there is still one more to be constructed in the middle of Route 42. But most of these came together in months!
Plus, a portion of the Creek Road bridge has already been replaced, and the other portion has been completely demolished.
And all ramps to access the new elevated roadway are all mostly completed.
Which brings us to the steel crossbeams going up yesterday.
A Quick Step Back. What is the Missing Moves Project?
Despite the Billion dollars going into the massive Direct Connection project in Bellmawr, it did not solve the “Missing Moves” problem.
From 295 North you can’t head to Atlantic City via 42 South. And if you are driving 42 North from the AC Expressway, you can’t get onto 295 South.
Well not without driving through the local streets of Bellmawr, Westville and Brooklawn.
And that is where Missing Moves comes in.
This second project fills in those missing movements by creating an all new elevated roadway alongside the Bellmawr landfills, connecting 295 to 42.
Let’s start where 42 North will veer off to the right and enter a new large ramp to then go up and over Route 42.
While I know the placement of where the road will veer off (from the top of a small hill on 42 North), the existing dirt currently dips down and I am not sure if the roadway will valley down a bit or if there is a lot more backfill to come.
42 North New Entrance to Bellmawr Industrial Park
Let’s do a photo tour of the project, starting from the Northbound side of Route 42, which is next to the Bellmawr Industrial Park… and we’ll move over Route 42, run alongside the landfill, cross over Creek Rd and connect with 295! Well, all in photos.
Currently on the 42 Northbound side there is an exit/entrance that is positioned right at the Sunoco gas station, which is Leaf Avenue.
With the new Missing Moves project, that exit will be moved about 600 ft south, and will include a new traffic signal!
The construction has progressed that the curbing is in place, as well as they traffic lights!
One of the benefits of this is movement is it will streamline traffic movements on Leaf Ave which currently has too many turn options and can slow traffic trying to exit and enter the highway. It is also difficult for large trucks to navigate into the industrial park.
We’ve reported on this before also, but even Benigno blvd as it approaches Leaf Ave (and Sunoco) will change, as traffic will shift over to the right to be in line with Edgewood Ave.
This new Leaf Ave intersection will also have a traffic signal, and it all lines up with the signal and Creek Road and Edgewood.
Of course there will be a large roadway crossing over Route 42. The traffic will be moving in one direction but it will cross over both the North and South lanes of 42.
The photo below is across Rt 42, on the Landfill side. To the right of this large support column the cars are entering 42 South. This large column on the right is what the overhead roadway will connect to after crossing Route 42. The lower columns on the left would be the traffic coming from 295 North, exiting onto 42 South.
To the left is the landfill and straight ahead in the distance is that small building that sits on the corner of Harding Ave.
The support columns continue through the small industrial park in that area… through a property which used to be Airgas Company (who relocated). The photo below we are continuing are movement from Route 42 alongside the landfill (which is to our left) and heading towards Creek Road near the Lawnmower Parts store
Moving on this photo was taken on the side road where Curaleaf is located (Stanley Ave). These columns (and the direction I am facing) are getting close to the Creek Road portion, where the recent crossbeams were set in place.
Ok now I’ve moved over to Creek Road where the Missing Moves road crosses over. The photo below tho, is looking back in the opposite direction.. back over towards Rt 42 way in the distance.
Honestly in this area I am not clear if they are building a long elevated bridge, or filling this in with dirt to raise up and keep the roadway level.
Below image is facing back towards Rt 295. To the immediate right of this photo the (now closed) Lawnmower repair shop is located.
Below is the property between Creek Road and 295. This wall is a roadway for 295 Northbound traffic coming off of 295, going up to the Missing Moves roadway, and heading towards 42 South.
The lane closest to us in this photo is 295 North, coming from Westville. On the right side across the roadway is the down ramp for traffic entering onto 295 South (From 42 North). That curved bridge in the distance is the new Creek Road Bridge, which was curved up to allow room for traffic below.
So now to really twist up your directions, below is a photo of the new Creek Road bridge facing the opposite direction (coming from Bellmawr Lake). This bridge is being rebuilt in place. Currently about 30% of the bridge was redeveloped so that traffic could move through, then the rest of the old Creek Rd bridge was demolished, and the remainder will be reconstructed.
The photo below is from September 19th 2021, and shows how much higher the new Creek Road bridge is.
Today this portion of the bridge has been demolished!
Well that’s it.. my Halloween 2021 photo update on the Bellmawr Missing Moves project!
Things are moving fast and I haven’t heard of any delays. The original NJDOT press release on the project stated it had a late 2023 anticipated completion date.
At the rate they are moving through this project.. it seems very possible!
Links and Location
To read all of our coverage on road projects in our area, including the larger Direct Connection, follow this link to see only the Road related projects!