April 20, 2012-Bart R. Mueller has announced plans to leave his post as Executive Director of the South Jersey Transportation Authority (SJTA), effective July 1, 2012, to pursue other business opportunities. The SJTA operates the Atlantic City Expressway (“Expressway”), the Atlantic City International Airport (“ACY”), various transportation shuttles in Southern NJ and parking facilities in Atlantic City and at the airport.
A resident of Oaklyn, Camden County, Mueller joined the SJTA in 2003 as a Programs Director in charge of E-ZPass along the Expressway and was elevated to the Executive Director position on January 1, 2007. The Authority has seen significant change under Mueller’s leadership, including some dramatic improvements to both the Expressway and at ACY.
The Expressway serves as a vital link to Atlantic City and to the shore points in southern New Jersey. In 2011, toll traffic was over 53 million, generating almost $77 million in revenue. Among the major capacity improvements realized during Mueller’s tenure were the addition of a third lane on the Westbound direction of the Expressway and the addition of Express E-ZPass at both barrier Toll Plazas. The enhanced traveling experience provided by projects such as these have allowed E-ZPass usage to increase from 39.5 percent in July 2003, when Mueller started with the SJTA, to 66.6 percent year to date (as of March 31, 2012).
Expressway patrons also benefit from Mueller’s safety and beautification initiatives. Mueller implemented the recognizable Emergency Service Patrol on the Expressway, identifying safety and convenience as top priorities under his watch.
“One of my favorite projects was enhancing the beauty of travel with our famous wildflower gardens on the Expressway, which enhances the travelling experience of our customers”, noted Mueller.
In addition to the Expressway, the SJTA also owns and operates the Atlantic City International Airport which provides air service to and from Atlantic City and other airports. In 2011, ACY serviced approximately 1.4 million passengers, an increase of almost 450,000 passengers since Mueller became the Executive Director. It has been Mueller’s vision to expand ACY to provide additional transportation choices to the region’s residents and visitors alike.
“Airport expansion is critical because the airport plays a crucial role in enhancing the prospects for Atlantic City and the entire South Jersey region to experience another much needed boost in its economic forecast, especially now in light of the renewed commitment of Governor Christie, Senate President Sweeney and the Legislature to Atlantic City”, Mueller commented.
Mueller’s leadership has provided the SJTA the ability to deliver major construction projects at ACY that support the local economy and have allowed for the growth that ACY has already achieved. During his tenure the SJTA has constructed a new parking garage at ACY, began a terminal expansion that is nearing completion that will allow for international flights and broke ground on a new airport firefighting and rescue facility. Projects like these, among numerous smaller projects, will help ensure that the region is appropriately served well into the future.
Since he became Executive Director, the overall revenues of the SJTA have grown to over $106 million. His leadership during difficult economic times allowed the authority to keep expenses in check by implementing innovative ideas, such as privatizing toll collections which saved the Authority over $1 million in 2012. His willingness to think outside the box and deliver on his promises has ensured that the SJTA is well positioned to continue the growth achieved under his watch in both now and into the future.
Mueller and his wife, Paula are the parents of two grown children, and the grandparents of three. Bart commented that he has several business and career options under consideration and will announce his decision at a later date.