Plan to eliminate Marlton Circle

January 3, 2008 4:26:10 PM PST
Evesham Township officials were meeting Thursday night to discuss the impact of getting rid of the Marlton Circle. The circle intersects Routes 70 and 73.

Seventy-seven-thousand drivers crowd the circle in everyday. With an accident averaging almost every other day, authorities say it's dangerous.

New Jersey Department of Transportation's solution is a 40-million dollar overpass with Route 73 flying over Route 70. A system of service roads would handle local traffic.

Evesham's new mayor is on board citing public safety, but grass roots organizers claim 1700 people have signed a petition to stop the overpass complaining it will hurt local business.

The landmark Olga's Diner said an overpass would shut off existing front driveways making customers go around the block.

Supporters of the plan said eliminating the circle would help getting around town.

Critics counter an overpass would act as a wall dividing and looming over this suburban community. Instead of an overpass, they are pushing for a large intersection with smart traffic signals. The township dismissed that idea, saying it couldn't handle the traffic load.

Thursday's overpass meeting was an effort to fine tune the plan. As of now, NJDOT wants to start construction of the overpass this year.