Have you ever driven through the intersection of Broad Street, Newman Springs Road, Maple Avenue and Route 35? If you are a frequenter of this Red Bank crossroads, then you know that in the morning and in the afternoon, it becomes one of the most congested stretches of asphalt in Monmouth County. So, why would Wawa want to plop a convenience store in the middle of this traffic nightmare?
A Wawa Is No Safe Haven from a Traffic Nightmare
On 1.7 acres near this four-street intersection is a car lot called Auto Exotica. It sits on the eastern end of Newman Springs Road, but if Wawa has its way, that dealership could soon be moving. That’s because the convenience store chain believes that this location is a prime place for a store due to the amount of traffic that flows through the area. In a bidding war with QuickChek, Wawa has managed to catch the attention of the owner of this car dealership. Now, they are getting ready to strike a deal, but there’s a problem.
People who live near and use this intersection believe that a convenience store will only add to the traffic nightmare they must deal with on a daily basis. The intersection already has an “F” rating from the New Jersey Department of Transportation and creating a spot near that intersection that attracts drivers from further out may make the area undrivable.
The owner of the car dealership and Wawa both claim that the convenience store will benefit the area and traffic. However, during zoning board meetings, this business partnership came under heavy questioning from Keefe Law Firm’s very own Michael J. Convery and former Red Bank mayor Edward J. McKenna, Jr. Representing the company that owns The Grove shopping centers and several other upscale business fronts nearby, Convery presented comparison cases that showed what the potential impact of a new convenience store in that area could be. It was even pointed out that the new business would also change the way nearby streets functioned, forcing many to use side streets to work their way back into high traffic areas after they leave the store.
More deliberation will be required before the zoning board can make any decisions. Public hearings are scheduled to resume April 5th, and when they do, the civil trial attorneys of Keefe Law Firm will be there.