Water main break adds two weeks to repair schedule


FREEHOLD, NJ – An westerly portion of Navesink River that has been closed and under repair since April 1 is expected to reopen in about two weeks. The delay was caused by a faulty mark-out by the water company that caused a water main break at the construction site.

“The road would have been reopened by now had it not been for this unfortunate accident,” said Freeholder John P. Curley, who is liaison to the Monmouth County Department of Public Works & Engineering, which is repairing the road. “I thank the nearby residents for their patience during this construction period. I know they will be happy with the new road when it reopens later this month.”

Heavy rains in March had caused a culvert running under Navesink River Road to collapse, forcing the closure of the road between Route 35 and Hubbard Avenue. The road had been expected to remain closed to vehicular traffic for four weeks until repairs were made. Monmouth County Engineer Joseph Ettore said the water main has been repaired and work on the road is progressing.

Navesink River Road adjacent to Poricy Brook Pond serves as an earthen dam with two pipes running underneath. As the height of the pond rose, it put pressure and velocity on the water passing underneath the road, undermining the supporting soil and unsettling the road.

The damaged pipes were 50 years old and constructed of corrugated steel pipes 60 inches in diameter. They were side by side under the road. Those pipes are being replaced with concrete pipes, which are stronger. Water drains from Poricy Brook Pond to Swimming River farther south.

Navesink River Road will remain closed to vehicular traffic. Pedestrian access through the site will be allowed at all times due to the proximity of the Nut Swamp Elementary School.

The county’s bridge and road crews are performing the work in-house, alleviating the expense and the time it would take to go out for public bidding to hire a private contractor. Despite the delay,  the county project will be completed more expeditiously and with a cost savings.

Motorists traveling from the north on Navesink River Road detour onto Route 35 south,  traverse Cooper’s Bridge into Red Bank and over the West Front Street bridge to Hubbard Avenue and then back to Navesink River Road. Motorists traveling from the south have to take Nut Swamp Road to Middletown-Lincroft Road to Oak Hill Road to Route 35.

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Allan Dean

Allan Dean is editor, publisher, and founder of the Atlantic Highlands Herald. Published since 1999 and selected in 2000 by the Borough of Atlantic Highlands as one of their official newspapers, making...