$11 million earmarked to overhaul Old Mine Road

Bushkill. The project to revitalize six miles of this historic road will begin in the spring.

| 10 Apr 2024 | 03:57

Old Mine Road, on the New Jersey side of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area (DWGNRA), is about to receive a major upgrade made possible by approximately $11 million from the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA) Legacy Restoration Fund.

According to National Park Service’s announcement, the first phase of this project will rehabilitate a three-mile segment of Old Mine Road at the southern end of the park between Mile Marker 6 (park boundary) and Mile Marker 9 in Hardwick Township. Construction is expected to begin in the spring of 2024 and be completed by the end of the summer.

“This road project will modernize a vital piece of the park’s infrastructure and enhance safety and access while also protecting sensitive natural and cultural resources along its route and maintaining its historic integrity” said Park Superintendent Doyle Sapp. 

For the safety of park visitors and contractors working in the project area, and to allow work to be completed as expeditiously as possible, the following closures will be in effect for the summer of 2024:

- Old Mine Road will be closed between the NPS boundary at Mile Marker 6/Worthington State Forest and Millbrook Village.

- Turtle Beach will be closed for the season.

- Poxono Access will be closed for the season.

- Van Campens Glen will be closed for the season, including the upper and lower trailheads.

The second phase will rehabilitate an additional three-mile section of the road at the park’s northern end, from Mile Marker 26.4 to Mile Marker 26.7 and between Mile Marker 29.6 and Mile Marker 32.4 in Sandyston and Montague townships in NJ. This work will begin in the fall of 2024 and is expected to be completed in 2025. Further details will be shared once construction schedules are finalized for this phase of work.

Old Mine Road is one of the oldest commercial roads in the nation and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as a Historic District; historic buildings along the route contribute to its eligibility. The road also traverses the Minisink National Historic Landmark. Protection of wetlands and streams, the Middle Delaware National Scenic and Recreational River and its floodplain, and the park’s cultural resources are primary considerations in the planning and execution of this work.

The National Park Service noted that work will include milling the existing pavement, conducting full depth patch repair and spot base repair, culvert replacement, reconstruction of shoulders and line striping. “The repair of the road surface, subsurface, and drainage systems will extend the life of the road, eliminate the ongoing cost of frequent patching of potholes and other temporary corrective measures, and improve safety for motorists and bicyclists, including correcting the steep drop-offs on the road’s shoulders.”

In 2023, the park hosted 4.2 million visits, making it the seventeenth most-visited national park in the country. The project is being financed by GAOA’s National Parks and Public Land Legacy Restoration Fund. When completed, this project is expected to eliminate approximately $9.7 million of the maintenance backlog in the park.

For more information on Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, call 570-426-2452 or visit nps.gov/dewa.