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Proposed connector road should be fast-tracked

October 22, 2021

“Commercial development, residential growth for seasonal visitors, and people permanently relocating to the area drive the continued growth and development of undeveloped properties to the south and west of the Route 1 corridor. This continued growth presents challenges for the efficient movement of traffic through the study area for both residents and visitors during the summer peak season and throughout the remaining months of the year.” – From a DelDOT report focusing on one of the fastest-growing areas of Sussex County.

Delaware’s Department of Transportation proposes to build a connector road linking Route 24 and Route 9, south of and somewhat parallel to Plantation Road and Route 1. The road would be an extension of Mulberry Knoll Road and as proposed would cross Cedar Grove, Robinsonville and Beaver Dam roads.

This latest iteration of the connector road concept represents a vital improvement. The section in the quote above that “continued growth presents challenges for the efficient movement of traffic” is as classic a case of understatement as will ever be read. Not only does the proposed connector road deserve this consideration, it should be approved quickly, designed and engineered immediately, and put out for bid in the shortest amount of time possible so construction can begin within the year – not five years from now. 

This project – an important component in further development of a grid system that will provide lots of route options – should also be a top-ranked candidate for money Sussex County Council has earmarked to assist DelDOT with funding for projects begging to be fast-tracked.

The connector should have been constructed five years ago. Population in the area being studied in the report quoted above increased 84 percent between 2000 and 2018, with housing units seeing an increase of 72 percent.

It’s high time to acquire land needed for this project while there is still land to be had.

The public can attend a related virtual workshop at 4 p.m., Tuesday, Oct. 26. To access the presentation and its question-and-answer session, go to DelDOT.gov/projects/Studies/mulberry-knoll.

  • Editorials are considered by the editorial board and written by Dennis Forney, Publisher Emeritus, with occasional contributions from other board members: Trish Vernon, CoPublisher and Editor; Dave Frederick, Sports Editor Emeritus; Jen Ellingsworth, Associate Editor; Nick Roth, Sports Editor; and Chris Rausch, CoPublisher and General Manager.

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