Part of the September 23rd data dump from PennEast about the new route variations included more details on proposed access roads to the pipeline construction areas. These are new roads that are built in places where public roads are not within a certain distance of the construction (I believe this is around 1/2-1 mile or so).
Lambertville and West Amwell get to see a new one: a new access road proposed to connect to Stymiest Street in Lambertville. If you never heard of it, don’t feel bad, I had to look it up too. It appears to be more of a driveway than an access road.
Here is PennEast’s proposed construction map:
The new access road is the dark grey area near the middle, connecting Stymiest with the pipeline route.
Those concentric wavy sort of lines you see on the map are called contour lines – they depict changes in elevation. As you can see, not only does the pipeline construction cross a lot of contour lines, so does the new access road. And no, PennEast doesn’t believe in switchbacks either – the road charges right up the hillside.
In addition to additional new erosion issues that this will cause, this is also going to be a nasty traffic issue for Lambertville as well. Here is a map of the larger area:
This map shows the Swan Creek Reservoir, Stymiest street in the middle, and where it connects into Quarry Street/Rocktown Lambertville Road.
Anyone who lives in the area knows what Quarry Street looks like – two cars typically can’t comfortably pass each other on most of it. There’s the google Street View look at it above. Imagine a 20 ton pipe truck going over that speed hump in front of the house! Imagine trying to get to the West Amwell municipal building on the connecting road!.
Imagine massive construction vehicles regularly traveling these roads.
The impacts to Lambertville and West Amwell both are going to be enormous. But they won’t be known in detail until 2017 – sometime AFTER PennEast expects approval from FERC and receive eminent domain authority.