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Author Topic: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT  (Read 26792 times)

Truvelo

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Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« on: March 04, 2009, 12:12:00 PM »

I'll be driving from Newark to Hartford at the end of the month and I'd like some advice as to the best route in terms of price and traffic flow. I think all the bridges across the Hudson are tolled so there's no option but to pay. Once over the river there's a choice of I-95 or Merritt Parkway. I think there may be some tolls on I-95. Which of these is the quickest?
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Alex

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2009, 12:49:07 PM »

Interstate 95 is godawful between the state line and New Haven. Unless you are taking it late at night, expect lots of stop and go (way to many on and off-ramps). There are no tolls for I-95 outside of the New England Thruway plaza at New Rochelle that was $1.00 last I went through there.

Personally I'd avoid the GWB (horrible chokepoint of traffic at the toll plaza) and take the Palisades Interstate Parkway north to Interstates 87/287 across the Tappan Zee Bridge. From there you can take I-287 back to Interstate 95 or the Merritt, or you can take I-684 north to I-84. Interstate 84 is not much better than Interstate 95, but it is better.

Truvelo

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #2 on: March 05, 2009, 02:14:51 PM »

Thanks for your replies, looks like it will be Merritt Parkway then. I've been through Hartford a few times but never from New York. One of the times was at night when I turned off onto a surface street and set up my tripod :)

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NJTurnpike

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #3 on: March 06, 2009, 04:56:08 AM »

How about taking 17 North to the Thruway to exit 17 to I-84?
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Rob Adams

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #4 on: March 06, 2009, 08:08:54 AM »

It's a little out of the way, but the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge is cheaper than either the GWB or the Tappan Zee.  I'd consider I-84 also.

One thing about the Merritt - I concur with what the others are saying but be aware that if there's any kind of backup on it, you'll be wishing you had taken either 95 or 84!  An accident doesn't just slow the Merritt down; it stops it.
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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #5 on: March 06, 2009, 12:18:43 PM »

I used to try all of the routes mentioned here when I shuttled from Boston to Philadelphia every other weekend.

My preference became using the PIP or 9W to the Thruway, then 287, 684 and 84.
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yanksfan6129

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #6 on: March 06, 2009, 03:40:16 PM »

The "prettiest" way is certainly to take the Merritt. A gorgeously landscaped road.
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Truvelo

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #7 on: March 06, 2009, 04:00:13 PM »

In that case I'll do 9W, 287, 684, 84 one way and 91, Merrit Parkway, 287, 9W coming back :)

Is it worth using 9W to the immediate south of Tappan Zee Bridge to cut the corner between PIP and 287?
« Last Edit: March 06, 2009, 04:02:59 PM by Truvelo »
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Ian

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #8 on: March 06, 2009, 04:28:25 PM »

Is it worth using 9W to the immediate south of Tappan Zee Bridge to cut the corner between PIP and 287?

 :nod: :nod: :nod:
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Rob Adams

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #9 on: March 06, 2009, 05:11:16 PM »

In that case I'll do 9W, 287, 684, 84 one way and 91, Merrit Parkway, 287, 9W coming back :)

Is it worth using 9W to the immediate south of Tappan Zee Bridge to cut the corner between PIP and 287?

I haven't had to do it in a while, but that had been may way of choice to and from the White Plains area.  I enjoyed the trip on 9W.
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Rob Adams

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2009, 06:27:20 PM »

I liked taking 9W as a change of pace from PIP.  I almost always took it to and from Exit 4 on the PIP.
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Alps

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #11 on: March 14, 2009, 07:18:49 PM »

I liked taking 9W as a change of pace from PIP.  I almost always took it to and from Exit 4 on the PIP.
I like that it shaves some distance off to 87, but I've wondered about the time.  Also used 303 for that purpose.

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #12 on: March 14, 2009, 07:20:01 PM »

It's a little out of the way, but the Newburgh-Beacon Bridge is cheaper than either the GWB or the Tappan Zee.  I'd consider I-84 also.

One thing about the Merritt - I concur with what the others are saying but be aware that if there's any kind of backup on it, you'll be wishing you had taken either 95 or 84!  An accident doesn't just slow the Merritt down; it stops it.
Luckily it's pretty easy to go from one to the other.  Monitor 880 and 1010 AM (traffic on the 8's and 1's) and see if the Merritt is mentioned in your direction.  If so, divert (preferably via a freeway like 7 or 8).

Truvelo

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #13 on: March 31, 2009, 09:37:01 AM »

I didn't take the route I originally intended as the signage around Newark Airport is complicated to say the least. In the end I followed I-95. As it was a Saturday I thought it would be worth the risk using the Washington Bridge as traffic on the NJ side flowed really well. As soon as I reached the NY side the traffic stopped and moved a couple of car lengths every minute, see below.



In the end I turned round at the next exit and took I-87 north and then 287 to reach Merritt Parkway. However Merritt Parkway is signed off exit 9 but from there it's only mentioned a couple more times and then I ended up on 120A heading into Port Chester. I then took US 1 and joined I-95 at exit 5. A few miles later the matrix signs were showing exit 12-14 2 mile delays so I got off where the back of the queue started at Darien and then took 124 to reach Merritt Parkway. Wow, this road is like being in a timewarp. Even the gas stations are quaint little buildings which have little in the way of off ramps to separate them from the highway. The lack of shoulders is not a problem since most of our roads don't have them and the tight ramps at interchanges are another thing we have plenty of. The only thing that I noticed strange were the signs with serrated edges and a non standard font - what's this all about?



On the return journey I took I-84 and then Taconic State Parkway. Having had the pleasure of using Merritt Parkway on the outward journey I was looking forward to this. However it's dangerously lethal. The lanes are too narrow, the bends are too tight, the grade is constantly up and down, the ramps on the interchanges are worse than those on Merritt, there's even left turn lanes in the median. I won't be going this way again, that's for sure.
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Chris

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #14 on: March 31, 2009, 10:07:26 AM »

Is the Cross Bronx the worst in New York?

Alex

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #15 on: March 31, 2009, 12:04:37 PM »

The serrated edges were done to mimic the old wooden signs that were once used along the Merritt Parkway.

The Cross Bronx Expressway is the worse, perhaps tied with the BQE near the Battery Tunnel northward. I always hit the brakes through there.

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #16 on: March 31, 2009, 12:36:32 PM »

Portions of the LIE have to be mentioned in that same sentence as well.
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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #17 on: March 31, 2009, 12:45:52 PM »

The font almost looks like Clearview.
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Rob Adams

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #18 on: March 31, 2009, 04:32:03 PM »

Agreed - the Cross Bronx, BQE, and LIE all get marks for the worst.  In the suburbs, I-95 (the CT. Turnpike) is dreadful.

I'm guessing you missed the entrance to the Hutch off Westchester Ave and that's why you wound up in beautiful, downtown Port Chester, NY?
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Alps

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #19 on: March 31, 2009, 11:14:36 PM »

Quote
Is the Cross Bronx the worst in New York?
Yes.  The BQE is second and various other freeways are also bad, but the I-95 corridor needs to have at least double the lanes.  Part of the problem is the serious limitation of the alternative corridor, 87/9A to Cross County to Hutch/Merritt on the Parkway system.  First, trucks can't go that way and second, it's only 2 lanes each way on the Hutch/Merritt.

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #20 on: April 01, 2009, 05:48:25 AM »

How about double-decking the Cross Bronx with express lanes from the GWB? The Trans-Manhattan Expressway part of I-95 already has like 12 lanes, which narrows to only 6 through Bronx. North of the Bruckner Interchange are already 2 expressways to handle the traffic. Cross Bronx is a huge bottleneck for those couple of miles in between.

Rob Adams

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #21 on: April 01, 2009, 07:38:23 AM »

Oh my - I shudder at the thought of construction on the Cross Bronx (even if it does need it).  It's rare to find traffic moving on that nightmare.
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Truvelo

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #22 on: April 01, 2009, 11:32:33 AM »

Oh my - I shudder at the thought of construction on the Cross Bronx (even if it does need it).  It's rare to find traffic moving on that nightmare.
Oops - so my idea of risking it during the weekend was always going to end in up stuck in traffic. So if that's weekend traffic what is it like during the rush hour - I dread to think :-o
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Rob Adams

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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #23 on: April 01, 2009, 11:38:07 AM »

There is just no relief from it.  At one end, it botches up with traffic from the Bruckner, Hutch, and the bridges (Throgs Neck and Whitestone).  At the other end, it jams with traffic coming from the Deegan and FDR Drive to head under the apartments and onto the George Washington Bridge.

I think the only time I ever saw it quiet was at 6:00 or so on a Sunday morning.  Those who drive it more would know better.  I avoid it whenever I can (it was even a nightmare last Thanksgiving).
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Re: Newark, NJ to Hartford, CT
« Reply #24 on: April 01, 2009, 01:37:02 PM »

It used to be wide open at 2 am. You used to also be able to go through the GWB Toll plaza without spending 45 minutes in the queue too. Of course, this was the 1990s. Something happened after 2000 that made the plaza a major choke point (at least through my experiences).

 


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