SJTA Begins Countdown to Celebrate 50 Years of the Atlantic City Expressway
HAMILTON TOWNSHIP (ATLANTIC COUNTY)- The South Jersey Transportation Authority (SJTA) today began a countdown that will culminate with the 50th birthday celebration of the opening of the Atlantic City Expressway in July of 2014.
The Expressway first opened at noon on July 31, 1964, connecting motorists from State Highway 42 to the Garden State Parkway, easing travel to Cape May County shore points. A year later, in July 1965, the Expressway opened to its current terminus in Atlantic City, enabling motorists to make the trip from Philadelphia to Atlantic City at the posted speed limit of 70 miles per hour without encountering a traffic light or stop sign.
Plans for the road go back to the 1930’s, when a highway was proposed between Camden and Atlantic City. The idea for a limited access road between the Philadelphia area and Atlantic City resurfaced in the 1950’s when South Jersey officials, led by State Senator Frank S. Farley, pushed for an expressway between the two areas to help the economy of Southern New Jersey.
The New Jersey Expressway Authority was created in 1962 by legislation signed by then Governor Richard Hughes and was responsible for building the roadway. The Atlantic City Expressway was built between 1962 and 1965 at a cost of approximately $ 48.2 million.
A “countdown clock” has been installed inside the Frank S. Farley Service Plaza to record the time. Displays will change periodically to reflect news and facts of the day leading up to July 31, 2014.