Skyline Drive (New Jersey) - History


The alignment of Skyline Drive was first designated as a state highway in the 1920s, as an alignment of State Highway Route 3. During the 1927 highway renumbering, the alignment was changed to State Highway Route S-4-B, a spur of State Highway Route 4, a cross-state highway. However, this designation was changed once again after another state highway renumbering in 1953, when it was re-designated as part of State Route 208. The alignment of Route 208 was planned to be upgraded into a limited access freeway through the Wanaque Reservoir and Greenwood Lake northward to the New York state line (to connect with the New York State Route 208's new freeway). There was also to be an interchange with Skyline Drive and West Oakland Avenue near the current interchange with Interstate 287. The $66.3 million project was canceled in the 1970s due to costs and environmental concerns.

After being extended to West Oakland Avenue, Route 208 ended near Skyline Drive, where drivers could continue northward to Ringwood and Erskine. The alignment of Route 208 remained along Skyline Drive during the 1960s, and was truncated in 1993 with the completion of Interstate 287. Route 208 was truncated to its current terminus with Interstate 287 in Oakland. After a massive accident with a dump truck in December 2000, the New Jersey Department of Transportation passed rules banning trucks from using Skyline Drive in April 2001, to 10-ton limits. The ban however, did not include buses.

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