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New Jersey Route 33

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Route 33 marker

Route 33
NJ 33 highlighted in red; Business Route highlighted in pink
Route information
Maintained by NJDOT and City of Trenton
Length42.03 mi[1] (67.64 km)
Major junctions
West end US 1 / Route 129 in Trenton
  I-295 in Hamilton Township
US 130 in Robbinsville Township
Route 133 in East Windsor Township
US 9 in Freehold Township
Route 34 in Howell Township
G.S. Parkway in Tinton Falls
Route 66 in Tinton Falls
Route 18 in Neptune Township
Route 35 in Neptune Township
East end Route 71 in Neptune Township
CountiesMercer, Middlesex, Monmouth
Highway system
Route 32Route 33A

Route 33 is a state highway in the US state of New Jersey. The highway extends 42.03 miles (67.64 km), from Trenton at an intersection with U.S. Route 1 and Route 129 to an intersection with Route 71 in Neptune Township. There are several intersections on Route 33 with future developments.

Route 33 begins in Trenton on a two-lane road. It passes through central Mercer County, joining northbound U.S. Route 130 in Robbinsville Township. It leaves the U.S. highway in East Windsor and becomes a local town road into the borough of Hightstown. It turns east again as it passes the east end of the Hightstown Bypass, where it becomes a divided arterial with four lanes as it makes its way through Monmouth County toward the shore. Around Freehold, it becomes a freeway. It then crosses the Garden State Parkway's Exit 100 in Tinton Falls and Route 18 in Neptune. Here, it is locally known as Corlies Avenue. Route 33 ends at Route 71 in Neptune. It has two concurrencies along the route, one with Route 34 and the second with US 130.

Route description[edit]

Eastbound Route 33 in Trenton

On its way across central New Jersey, Route 33 traverses three counties: Mercer, Middlesex, and Monmouth.[1] Beginning in Trenton as Greenwood Avenue, Route 33 is a two-lane road, with one lane in each direction. Once it merges with U.S. Route 130 in Robbinsville Township, Route 33 has two lanes in each direction.[1] After crossing into East Windsor Township, Route 33 veers off and becomes a local road going into Hightstown. After passing through the center of town, Route 33 again enters East Windsor Township where it becomes an avenue with a total of at least four lanes, with two lanes in each direction underneath the Turnpike overpass. Before leaving Mercer County, the road intersects with an interchange at Route 133 that provides access to Exit 8 of the New Jersey Turnpike (I-95).[1] Route 33 then crosses into Monroe Township, where it is slowly becoming a residential access road for new communities. It then continues into Millstone Township as a rural avenue. Continuing into Manalapan Township, the avenue again becomes a residential access road. At the ramp for Route 33 Business, the avenue turns into a freeway bypass, known as the Freehold Bypass. Route 33 bypasses Freehold Borough to the south staying within Freehold Township. Within Freehold Borough, Route 33 Business is the original alignment of Route 33 before the bypass was built.[2]

The bypass of Freehold is the partial alignment of what would have been a Route 33 freeway from Neptune to Trenton. As time went on, a scaled-back version of just a bypass was agreed upon. The western start of the freeway is just east of County Route 527, and was built from Route 33 Business to U.S. Route 9 in the 1970s. The next section was built from U.S. Route 9 across Route 79 to Halls Mill Road (County Route 55), and this remained its terminus from the late 1980s until January 17, 2003, when the final leg of the bypass was opened.[3] East of Halls Mills Road, it is a two-lane freeway with a westbound entrance at Howell Road, and full access from Fairfield Road.[2]

The Howell Road eastbound exit ramp has been closed since the bypass opened because of safety concerns. The interchange was originally planned to be a partial cloverleaf, but residents near Howell Road were concerned by sprawl and forced the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) to scale back the plans. Instead, a diamond interchange was built. This forced drivers wishing to head northbound on Howell Road to make a left turn, which proved to be dangerous because of the limited sight distance caused by the overpass. Now because the NJDOT does not want to pay to fix the problem, the exit has been barricaded since the freeway's extension was opened. The ramp has guardrails blocking access and the NJDOT intends to bulldoze what is left.[4][5]

Route 33 westbound past Route 18 interchange in Neptune Township

Passing the Fairfield exit, it crosses over Business 33 and the two roads merge as a two-lane road. Route 33 passes along the southern section of the Naval Weapons Station Earle and then becomes a residential access road. The road then runs concurrent with Route 34 and becomes a divided four-lane avenue as it travels into Wall Township. Routes 33/34 come upon a roundabout and they both split as Route 33 continues east thru a rural section into Tinton Falls. It goes past the intersection with Route 66, past the interchange with the Garden State Parkway, across the highway and into Neptune Township. The road passes through suburban and rural sections until it comes upon the interchange with Route 18. Immediately past the exit, Route 33 borders Neptune City on the south and Neptune Township on the north for a brief stretch before completely re-entering Neptune Township. After it crosses Route 35, the avenue ends and becomes a two-lane road for a brief stretch. Route 33 then ends at Route 71, just west of Ocean Grove.[2]


Route 33 westbound at CR 537, on the older four lane Freehold Bypass

Route 33 originally was part of two auto trails: the Cranbury Trail, an alternative to the Lincoln Trail running from New Brunswick to Trenton; and the Jersey Link, running from Hightstown to Ocean Grove. These routes were incorporated in 1916 into two new routes: New Jersey Route 1 in parts of the road south of Hightstown, and Route 7 from Hightstown to its terminus at Route 71. Both roads were changed into Route 33 in the 1927 New Jersey state highway renumbering.[6]

Route 33 was originally planned as a freeway from U.S. Route 1 in Trenton across New Jersey to Route 18 in Neptune. However, in 1967, the NJDOT scaled back proposals to the current seven-mile (11 km) Freehold Bypass. The bypass from near County Route 527 in Manalapan to Halls Mills Road in Freehold was completed and opened in segments from 1971 to 1988; however, the remainder of the bypass east to Fairfield Road in Howell was not completed until 2003.[3] The project cost $33.7 million in 2003 USD.[3]

The Route 33 bypass has three abandoned segments. The first of these is the cloverleaf ramp from Route 79 southbound to the Route 33 freeway eastbound. It has been mostly destroyed, to make way for a new reverse jughandle for U.S. Route 9 northbound to Schanck Road. The merging part of the ramp still remains abandoned along the right side of the eastbound freeway.[7]

The original alignment for the freeway east of Halls Mills Road (CR 55) can be seen now as an NJDOT maintenance shed. The new alignment curves to the left after the interchange, in order to avoid what the NJDOT believed to be a suspected (but never identified) turtle bog habitat. The pavement is accessible from the eastbound on-ramp, but is fenced off.[8]

Howell Road was never given access from Route 33 eastbound and thus the ramp still remains barricaded off, slowly decaying.[9]

Up until late 1988, Route 33 westbound ran underneath US 130, then merged with 130's southbound lanes. This was because Route 33 ran parallel to Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR) Camden & Amboy route at that point, requiring a massive concrete overpass. (Route 33 eastbound also ascended the bridge approach about halfway before branching off like an exit ramp—a sign with flashing lights read "Hightstown, Shore Points" at the fork.) PRR abandoned the Hightstown–Windsor segment in 1967, reducing the importance of the hulking bridge. NJDOT eventually demolished the crumbling structure in 1989, with its approaches flattened to grade. Route 33 now meets US 130 at the north end of the multiplex with a traffic signal.

Route 33 eastbound at the Howell Road exit ramp, which still remains closed

A similar bridge carried Route 33 over the same PRR (now Conrail Shared Assets Operations [CSAO]) line further south in Robbinsville. NJDOT replaced the overpass with a wider, linear roadway in 2009. As the CSAO line was dormant, no railroad street crossing was installed. Trackage was dismantled two years later in 2011 between in Robbinsville and Windsor

Until 2003, the 33/130 junction in Robbinsville was configured as an at-grade wye interchange, employing curved ramps for the directional movements. The junction has since been modified to a signalized intersection with ordinary turning lanes. It has also been converted from a T-intersection to a 4-way, with the construction of a new road on the southeast side of US-130.

On December 31, 2006, the Turnpike Authority released its proposals regarding Interchange 8. The old Interchange 8 was to be demolished and replaced with a new interchange. The new Exit 8 would end at the intersection with Route 33, Milford Road, and the 133 bypass (on the east side of the expressway, instead of the west). This new Exit 8 would grant direct access to the bypass (without going through any traffic lights), as well as to 33, using grade-separated interchanges. The new toll gate was to feature a total of 10 lanes at the new facility.[10] The new interchange opened in January 2013.

Major intersections[edit]

MercerTrenton0.000.00 US 1 / Route 129 south – Princeton, New Brunswick, New York, Morrisville, PhiladelphiaInterchange, western terminus, Market Street continues west to US 206 and Route 29.
Hamilton Township3.325.34 I-295 south to N.J. TurnpikeI-295 Exit 63
4.076.55 CR 533 (Whitehorse Mercerville Road) to I-295 north – Princeton, Bordentown
Robbinsville Township7.50–
CR 526 (Robbinsville Edinburg Road/Robbinsville Allentown Road) to N.J. Turnpike – Princeton, Allentown
7.8412.62 US 130 south
CR 526 to N.J. Turnpike
West end of US 130 overlap
East Windsor Township12.3919.94 US 130 northEast end of US 130 overlap
Hightstown14.1522.77 CR 539 south / CR 571 south (South Main Street)West end of CR 539/CR 571 overlap
14.2122.87 CR 571 north (Stockton Street)East end of CR 571 overlap
14.2822.98 CR 539 north (North Main Street) – CranburyEast end of CR 539 overlap
East Windsor Township15.5224.98 Route 133 west – East Windsor, Princeton
To I-95 / N.J. Turnpike
Interchange; Formerly a direct connection to I-95/NJTP Exit 8, now via Route 133
No major junctions
MonmouthMillstone Township21.1033.96 CR 527A (Iron Ore Road/Woodville Road) – Englishtown, Smithburg
Manalapan Township24.0138.64 CR 527 (Millhurst Road/Sweetmans Lane) – Tennent, Englishtown, Perrineville
West end of freeway

Route 33 Bus. east (Old Highway) to US 9 north – Freehold Business District
Eastbound exit and westbound entrance
Freehold Township25.6841.33Wemrock Road – Monmouth Battlefield State Park
26.5942.79 CR 537 to US 9 north – Smithburg, Freehold, The Amboys, NewarkNo access from Route 33 eastbound to CR 537 westbound or from CR 537 eastbound to Route 33 westbound
27.5444.32 US 9 south – LakewoodAccess from Route 33 only
27.6944.56 Route 79 north (South Street) – FreeholdNo eastbound exit
29.0446.74Halls Mills Road (CR 55) – Adelphia
Howell Township30.0448.34Howell RoadEastbound exit and westbound entrance, eastbound exit is closed
30.6449.31Brickyard Road, Fairfield RoadEastbound exit and westbound entrance
Route 33 Bus. west
Westbound exit and eastbound entrance
East end of freeway
34.7755.96 Route 34 north – Matawan, New York CityWestbound exit and eastbound entrance, west end of Route 34 overlap
Wall Township35.76–
Route 34 south – Brielle
CR 547 south (Asbury Road) – Farmingdale
Collingwood Circle, east end of Route 34 overlap, west end of CR 547 overlap
36.0357.98 CR 547 north (Shafto Road) / CR 547 Spur south (Wyckoff Road) – EatontownEast end of CR 547 overlap
Tinton Falls37.1659.80 Route 66 east – Asbury Park
G.S. ParkwayGSP Exit 100
Neptune Township40.01–
Route 18 – Avon, Eatontown, Evans Area, Pt. PleasantRoute 18 Exit 8
41.3866.59 Route 35 – Eatontown, Belmar
42.0367.64 Route 71 (Main Street) – Asbury Park, Bradley BeachEastern terminus
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Business route[edit]

Route 33 Business
Length6.89 mi[11] (11.09 km)

Route 33 Business is a short state highway in New Jersey that is the original alignment of Route 33 before a freeway was built as a bypass of Freehold. This business route stretches 6.89 miles (11.09 km) through Manalapan Township, Freehold Township, Freehold Borough and Howell Township. The highway holds the distinction of being the only business route state highway in all of New Jersey.

View east along Route 33 Business at Route 79 in Freehold

Route 33 Business begins at the interchange with Route 33, its parent route, in Manalapan Township, New Jersey. A short distance after, the interchange from Route 33 eastbound merges into Route 33 Business, and the route passes to the south of Monmouth Battlefield State Park and enters Freehold Township. Soon after entering the borough of Freehold, Route 33 Business interchanges with U.S. Route 9. Route 33 Business turns to the southeast, passing to the north of Freehold Raceway. A short distance later, Route 33 Business intersects at a traffic light with New Jersey Route 79 (South Street) in downtown Freehold. At the intersection with Fairfield Road, Route 33 Business enters the interchange with Route 33 and the freeway, where the designation terminates.[12]

Route 33 Business originates as an alignment of Route 33, designated across the state in the 1927 New Jersey state highway renumbering[13] as a replacement to Routes 1 and 7, which were assigned in the 1920s.[14] The route remained intact for several decades, continuing as the proposals for the crosstown Route 33 Freeway during the 1960s were drawn up. The new Route 33 Freeway was to be 39 miles (63 km) long, starting at U.S. Route 1 in Trenton, crossing through Princeton and into Hightstown, where it would connect with the current-day New Jersey Route 133, heading eastward, where it would connect with the unbuilt Driscoll Expressway in Freehold. The freeway would continue, interchanging with the Garden State Parkway near Exit 100 in Neptune and terminate at the Route 18 freeway in Neptune.[15] However, the next year, the New Jersey Department of Transportation had to scale down the project to a new bypass of Freehold, and prevent the congestion of traffic through the borough.[16] Design studies began that year, and the entire bypass was constructed during the 70s and 80s, with most of the freeway finished in 1988.[17] This new bypass was designated as Route 33 Bypass from 1965[18] until Route 33 was re-aligned off the local roads onto the new freeway in 1990, which at that time, Route 33 Business was designated on the former alignment.[19]

Major intersections[edit]

The entire route is in Monmouth County.

Manalapan Township0.000.00 Route 33 westWestern terminus of Route 33 Business; Interchange; access to westbound Route 33 and from eastbound Route 33
Freehold Township2.353.78 US 9 – The Amboys, Lakewood
Freehold Borough2.924.70 CR 537 (West Main Street) – Colts Neck, Smithburg
3.475.58 Route 79 (South Street) – Matawan, Lakewood
Freehold Township4.947.95 CR 55 (Halls Mill Road/Kozloski Road)Interchange
Howell Township6.8911.09 Route 33 eastEastern terminus of Route 33 Business; Interchange; access to eastbound Route 33 and from westbound Route 33
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Related routes[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e New Jersey Department of Transportation. "Route 33 straight line diagram" (PDF). Retrieved March 17, 2020.
  2. ^ a b c Microsoft; Nokia (April 6, 2013). "overview map of NJ 33" (Map). Bing Maps. Microsoft. Retrieved April 6, 2013.
  3. ^ a b c Route 33 Bypass to open January 17, 2003, New Jersey Department of Transportation, press release dated January 16, 2003. Retrieved June 14, 2007.
  4. ^ Baratta, Kathy (February 11, 2004). "Howell Road exit from bypass will stay closed". News Transcript. Retrieved December 18, 2006.
  5. ^ "State should bite the bullet on bypass exit". News Transcript. March 3, 2004. Retrieved December 18, 2006.
  6. ^ New Jersey Department of Transportation. "Route 33 Straight Line Diagram from 2005" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on October 29, 2003. Retrieved August 26, 2007.
  7. ^ Mapquest. "View of Route 33/Route 79 interchange". Retrieved August 26, 2007.
  8. ^ Mapquest. "View of Route 33/County Route 55 interchange". Retrieved August 26, 2007.
  9. ^ Mapquest. "Howell Road interchange". Retrieved August 26, 2007.
  10. ^ "Pike plan raises concern", The Trenton Times, January 1, 2007.
  11. ^ a b "Route 33 Business straight line diagram" (PDF). New Jersey Department of Transportation. Retrieved December 9, 2009.
  12. ^ Overview map of New Jersey Route 33 Business (Map). Cartography by NAVTEQ. Bing Maps. 2009. Archived from the original on March 9, 2010. Retrieved November 21, 2009.
  13. ^ State of New Jersey, Laws of 1927, Chapter 319.
  14. ^ State Highway Route map (Map). New Jersey Highway Department. 1925. Archived from the original on September 27, 2007. Retrieved June 23, 2009.
  15. ^ "Transportation 1985: A Regional Plan". Tri-State Transportation Commission. 1966. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  16. ^ "New Jersey Highway Facts". New Jersey Department of Transportation. 1967. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  17. ^ "Road Halfway Done". The Asbury Park Press. Gannett Newspapers. August 22, 2001.
  18. ^ ROUTE NO. . Beginning at a point in State Highway Route 33 (1953) west of Freehold and thence proceeding southeastwardly to another point in the said Route 33 (1953) east of Freehold. L.1965, c. 210, s. 2.
  19. ^ New Jersey Official Road Map (Map). Cartography by New Jersey Department of Transportation. New Jersey Department of Transportation. 1991.

External links[edit]

Route map:

KML is from Wikidata