With just a month to go until the start of the school year, parents who send their students to may also be facing construction traffic as has still yet to begin.
The $1 million dollar project to upgrade the was initially expected to begin in April but was pushed back to a July 2 start date while a nearby.
"The County just informed me that they issued a notice to the contractor to proceed as of July 2 and provide a new construction schedule," Oradell's Borough Engineer Marisa Tiberi said. "And to date, they have not received a schedule and the project has not begun. It is highly unlikely this project will be completed including the intersection work on our side prior to school opening."
Part of the intersection work began earlier this year when the borough at the corners of Elm Street and Bergen Boulevard along with Elm Street and Center Street. The signage is meant to encourage motorists to slow down while traveling either north or south along Elm Street.
"It is imperative that they start at the intersection first before school opens and before children are there," Mayor Joseph Murray said. "If they tear up the road after school starts it would be a disaster and I am really concerned about that."
The has been closed to vehicular traffic since June 2008. Owned by Bergen County, the bridge splits Elm Street, a borough owned road that leads from Oradell into New Milford. It's 76-feet long and 20-feet wide but due to age and the constant flooding in the area, there has been significant damage and deterioration to the stringer beams underneath the metal bridge decking.
The County-funded project includes widening the bridge by two-feet and increasing the weigh limit from three-tons to 40-tons so it meets federal standards. Oradell had previously approved weight and speed restrictions for the bridge to keep commercial vehicles and Transit buses from using it as a shortcut from Elm Street to New Milford Avenue.
All of the original iron work that is visible when looking at the bridge will be refurbished and reinstalled on the new bridge so as to retain the look and character of the original bridge.