'X' may mark Secaucus interchange

Wednesday, May 07, 2003

By The Associated Press

The New Jersey Turnpike exit for the Secaucus Transfer rail station could get a unique designation.

The new exit, located between exits 15E and 16E on the turnpike's eastern spur, could be the first in the state - and maybe the world - to get an "X."

"I don't know of any situation where we had an east and a west and we added an exit," turnpike Executive Director Michael Lapolla said. "You can't call it exit 15-1/2."

So Lapolla said he'll instead suggest "exit 15X."

"Basically, in the transportation world, X connotes a transfer from one form of transportation to another," Lapolla said. "With the Secaucus Transfer there, I think that X makes sense."

If turnpike commissioners approve, perhaps as early as June, 15X could be the only exit with an "X."

"No one can identify any other roads with an X in the exit number. None at all," said Travis Johnson, information services manager at the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association, whose members include 119 toll agencies from around the world. "You see things like exit 35A, but X is rare, if entirely unknown."

The $235 million interchange will open about two years after the $450 million station in the Meadowlands, which links 11 of the 12 NJ Transit commuter rail lines.

The opening of the interchange is about a year behind schedule because of the discovery of an old graveyard and the need to disinter the remains of 3,500 people and bury them at a cemetery in North Bergen.



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