About Route 206
See the history of Route 206 below.
U.S. Route 206
U.S. Route 206 (US 206) is a 130.23-mile-long (209.58 km) north-south United States highway in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, United States. Only about a half a mile (800 m) of its length is in Pennsylvania; the Milford-Montague Toll Bridge carries it over the Delaware River into New Jersey, where it is the remainder of the route. The highway’s northern terminus is near Milford, Pennsylvania at an intersection with US 209; some sources and signs show an overlap with US 209 to end at its parent route US 6. Its southern terminus is in Hammonton, New Jersey at an intersection with Route 54 and US 30. For much of its length, US 206 is a rural two-lane undivided road that passes through the Pine Barrens, agricultural areas, and the Appalachian Mountains of northwestern New Jersey, with some urban and suburban areas. The route connects several cities and towns, including Bordentown, Trenton, Princeton, Somerville, Netcong, and Newton. The road is known as the Disabled American Veterans Highway for much of its length.
What is now US 206 in New Jersey was designated as part of several state routes prior to 1927, including Pre-1927 Route 2 between Bordentown and Trenton in 1916, pre-1927 Route 13 between Trenton and Princeton in 1917, and pre-1927 Route 16 between Princeton and Bedminster Township in 1921. The current routing along pre-1927 Route 2 became a part of US 130 in 1926. In 1927, current US 206 became Route 39 between Hammonton and White Horse, Route 37 between White Horse and Trenton, Route 27 between Trenton and Princeton, Route 31 between Princeton and Newton, and Route S31 between Newton and the Delaware River. In the later 1930s, US 206 was designated to connect US 30 in Hammonton north to US 6 and US 209 in Milford; the northern terminus was moved to its current location in the 1940s. The state highways running concurrently with US 206 in New Jersey were removed in 1953. In the 1960s, two separate freeways were proposed for US 206 but never built. The first freeway was to connect Hammonton south along the Route 54 corridor toward Route 55 and the planned Route 60 in Vineland and Millville. The other US 206 freeway was planned in northwestern New Jersey, connecting I-80 in Netcong north to Montague Township. Construction has begun for a bypass of US 206 around Hillsborough in 2010 after being planned since 1974. The NJDOT is currently widening the route in Byram Township to alleviate congestion, with completion in 2013.
US 206 begins at US 30 in the town of Hammonton in Atlantic County, New Jersey, heading north-northeast on the two-lane, undivided Disabled American Veterans Highway. South of this intersection, the road continues as Route 54. From its southern terminus, US 206 runs through farmland, which eventually gives way to the heavily forested Pine Barrens. Within this area, the route continues through the Wharton State Forest. Here, the road comes to the eastern terminus of CR 536.
Past Columbus, US 206 becomes undivided again, with residential development increasing. It becomes a divided highway again and merges with Route 68, the main access road to the Fort Dix entity of Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst, at a directional intersection. After this intersection, US 206 enters Bordentown Township and reaches an interchange with the New Jersey Turnpike (I-95) in a commercial area. Following this interchange, the route crosses over CR 545. A short distance later, US 206 merges into US 130 at a directional interchange to form a concurrency. The two roads continue north on a six-lane divided highway, briefly entering the eastern edge of Bordentown at the intersection with CR 528. Back in Bordentown Township, US 130 and US 206 split at another directional interchange. Past US 130, US 206 crosses under a Conrail Shared Assets Operations railroad line and heads through development as a four-lane divided highway, making a slight northwest bend before resuming north.
US 206 crosses the Crosswicks Creek and enters Hamilton Township, Mercer County. Immediately after the Crosswicks Creek, there is an interchange with I-195. Past I-195, the route reaches the White Horse Circle, where it intersects CR 524 and CR 533. At this point, US 206 turns west-northwest to run along four-lane divided locally maintained Broad Street. Passing through White Horse, the road briefly becomes five lanes with a center left-turn lane before becoming a four-lane divided highway again as it crosses over I-295 without an interchange. Running into more urban areas of development, the route enters Trenton at the crossing of CR 650 After entering Trenton, US 206 narrows into a two-lane undivided street. As the road heads toward downtown Trenton, it crosses New Jersey Transit’s River Line immediately before interchanging with Route 129. From here, the road turns more to the northwest with four lanes and passes by the Sun National Bank Center before crossing over Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor and the US 1 freeway simultaneously. US 206 enters the commercial downtown area, narrowing back to two lanes before reaching Warren Street, where US 206 splits into a one-way pair following Broad Street northbound and Warren Street southbound.
In Princeton, CR 533 intersects US 206, and the two routes form a concurrency. The road becomes Stockton Street, passing by the Drumthwacket Governor’s mansion. US 206 turns north onto Bayard Lane, with Route 27 continuing northeast into downtown Princeton on Nassau Street, which provides access to Princeton University. The stretch from Lawrenceville until the intersection with Nassau Street in Princeton is part of the King’s Highway Historic District. Bayard Lane carries the route past more wooded developed areas, eventually curving northeast through a park. Here, US 206 becomes State Road and turns north again. Continuing to the north, the amount of development adjacent to the road decreases.
US 206 enters Montgomery Township in Somerset County, where the name of the road becomes Van Horne Memorial Highway. In Montgomery Township, the route runs to the east of Princeton Airport and crosses CR 518. Following this intersection, CR 533 splits from US 206 by heading northeast, and US 206 continues north-northwest through a mix of suburban and rural areas. The road passes through the community of Harlingen before widening to four lanes and reaching Belle Mead. In this area, US 206 passes over CSX’s Trenton Subdivision before making a turn to the northeast and then to the north, narrowing back to two lanes. The road enters Hillsborough Township, where the Van Horne Memorial Highway designation ends. It crosses an abandoned railroad line leading to the Belle Mead General Depot before continuing into residential and commercial areas of Hillsborough. The road comes to a junction with CR 514 in this area.
Past the CR 514 intersection, US 206 makes a curve northeast before heading north again. Leaving the center of Hillsborough, the road runs northeast past more wooded areas as it crosses under Norfolk Southern‘s Lehigh Line. The route passes more development as it widens into a four-lane divided highway with jughandles, turning to the north and passing Duke Gardens. US 206 briefly becomes six lanes wide at the CR 608 intersection before narrowing back to four lanes as it crosses the Raritan River into Somerville. In Somerville, the road runs northwest parallel to the Raritan River prior to turning north into commercial areas and entering Raritan. US 206 runs under New Jersey Transit’s Raritan Valley Line before making a turn to the north-northwest.
US 206 comes to the modified Somerville Circle, where it meets US 202 and Route 28. At this modified traffic circle, US 206 and Route 28 run through it while US 202 passes over it with ramp access. US 206 forms a concurrency with US 202 at this point and the two routes continue north into Bridgewater Township, briefly entering Somerville. The road features an interchange with US 22 and heads north with the Bridgewater Commons shopping mall on the east side of the road and the Somerset Corporate Center on the west side of the road. An interchange with Commons Way provides access to both these places. Past Commons Way, the road passes under Garrettson Road and comes to an interchange with I-287 that also provides access to I-78. Past the I-287 interchange, US 202/206 continue north as a two-lane undivided road past suburban areas. The road crosses Chambers Brook into Bedminster Township, where it soon passes under I-78. Shortly after I-78, it widens into a four-lane divided highway with a Jersey barrier. US 202/206 come to another interchange with I-287, pass over the North Branch Raritan River, and come to an intersection where the two routes split.
After the US 202 split, US 206 continues north as a four-lane divided highway through commercial areas, with the grass median becoming replaced by a painted median as it comes to a junction with CR 523 in downtown Bedminster. Following this intersection, the route narrows into a two-lane undivided road that runs through less development. US 206 enters Peapack-Gladstone, where it runs a short distance to the west of New Jersey Transit’s Gladstone Branch. In Peapack-Gladstone, the road briefly becomes a four-lane divided highway as it has an interchange with Pfizer Way, a road that provides access to a Pfizer facility. Past this point, US 206 becomes a two-lane undivided road that runs northwest through rural areas, with CR 512 crossing the road. Just after this intersection, the route enters Bedminster Township again, turning to the north.
Business in the area of the road increase before US 206 widens to four total lanes and comes to a modified cloverleaf interchange with I-80 and the southern terminus of Route 183. At this point, the road continues north into Netcong as Route 183 while US 206 heads west along I-80, a six-lane freeway that continues into Mount Olive Township. The freeway continues northwest, running through a small corner of Netcong before coming back into Mount Olive Township and interchanging with US 46. Immediately after US 46, the highway passes over New Jersey Transit’s Morristown Line/Montclair-Boonton Line before turning north and reaching a trumpet interchange where US 206 splits from I-80. Following this split, US 206 is a four-lane freeway that heads northeast, crossing under Waterloo Valley Road and an abandoned railroad line before coming to an interchange with International Drive.
After the International Drive interchange, US 206 crosses the Musconetcong River and enters Stanhope, Sussex County. Immediately following the river crossing, the freeway merges with the northern terminus of Route 183 at an interchange on the border between Byram Township to the west and Stanhope to the east. Past Route 183, US 206 continues north as a four-lane divided surface road past development, fully entering Stanhope again before crossing into Byram Township. Upon entering Byram Township, the route becomes a two-lane undivided road. Upon turning northwest, the surroundings become more forested as US 206 crosses a mountain, with the northbound direction gaining a second lane for a distance. There are a few businesses along the road as it runs north past wooded areas near Cranberry Lake and Panther Lake. The route continues into Andover, where it becomes Main Street and passes under the abandoned Lackawanna Cut-Off. US 206 forms a brief concurrency with CR 517 in the commercial downtown area. Past CR 517, US 206 bends northwest and enters Andover Township. Here, the road runs back into forested areas, passing by Whites Pond and running near Kittatinny Valley State Park. After a curve to the north, the route enters a mix of development and rural areas, passing to the west of Newton Airport prior to entering Newton.
After heading north with a three-lane stretch that has two southbound lanes and one northbound lane, the two-lane road reaches a junction with CR 560. After this intersection, the road leaves the state forest and continues through wooded areas with some commercial establishments. US 206/CR 521 reaches the community of Hainesville, where it passes through more agricultural surroundings with some development. Leaving Hainesville, the road continues into Montague Township. Near the community of Montague, CR 521 splits from US 206 by heading to the northeast. Meanwhile, US 206 turns to the northwest to run through wooded areas of the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area, where it comes to the Milford-Montague Toll Bridge over the Delaware River that is maintained by the Delaware River Joint Toll Bridge Commission.
After crossing the river on the Milford-Montague Toll Bridge, US 206 continues north into Dingman Township in Pike County, Pennsylvania. A short distance after the bridge, the route comes to a northbound toll plaza, where it becomes a two-lane divided highway. US 206 officially ends at an intersection with US 209 not far after the toll plaza for the bridge. Even though this intersection marks the end of US 206, a few signs show the route heading concurrent with US 209 to continue north to US 6 in Milford.
After the U.S. Highway System was created in 1926, the route between Bordentown and Trenton became the northernmost part of US 130 while it became a part of US 1 between Trenton and Princeton. In the 1927 New Jersey state highway renumbering, several state highways were legislated along present-day US 206. Route 39 followed the route from Hammonton to White Horse, while Route 37 was designated along it between White Horse and Trenton. From Trenton north to Princeton, pre-1927 Route 13 was replaced by Route 27. Present-day US 206 between Princeton and Newton became part of Route 31, a route that was to go past Newton to the New York border near Unionville, while the portion north of Newton to the Delaware River in Montague became Route S31, a spur of Route 31. Another spur of Route 31, Route 31A, was legislated in 1941 to run from Route 31 in Princeton to Route 33 in Hightstown; only a small portion of this was built over the Northeast Corridor railroad line and is now Route 64.
US 206 was designated in the later 1930s, running from US 30 in Hammonton, New Jersey north to US 6 and US 209 in Milford, Pennsylvania. By this time, the US 1 and US 130 designations were removed from the route onto new alignments. In 1938, US 206/Route 31 was designated to bypass Somerville, the former alignment was known as Route 177 from the 1960s until 1974. In the 1940s, US 206/Route 39 was realigned to the south of White Horse; the former alignment was known as Route 160 between the 1960s and the 1980s. Also in the 1940s, the northern terminus of US 206 was moved to its current location at US 209 in Dingman Township, Pennsylvania.
In the 1953 New Jersey state highway renumbering, the state highways running concurrent with US 206 were removed. When US 206’s current alignment bypassing Columbus was built by the 1960s, the designation of Route 170 was given to the old alignment through Columbus; this road was turned over to Burlington County in the 1980s and is now CR 690. In the late 1960s, a freeway was proposed for the US 206/Route 54 corridor, running from US 30 in Hammonton south to Route 55 and the proposed Route 60 near Vineland and Millville. Originally, a parkway had been planned in 1932 to serve the US 206 corridor between Hammonton and Trenton, but never materialized. The freeway between Vineland/Millville and Hammonton was to cost $47 million and was intended to provide a better route between the two areas than the existing two-lane roads. However, it was never built due to environmental and financial issues.
A freeway was also proposed for US 206 in northwestern New Jersey during the 1960s. In 1964, a Route 94 freeway was planned to follow US 206 between Netcong and Newton on its way to the proposed Route 23 freeway in Hamburg. The Tri-State Transportation Commission proposed a longer US 206 freeway that was to connect I-78 and I-287 in Bedminster Township north to Newton, incorporating the southern portion of the Route 94 proposal. This freeway was intended to relieve traffic on existing roads and provide access to recreation areas. By the late 1960s, the US 206 freeway would be planned by the NJDOT to connect I-80 in Netcong north to Montague. This freeway was proposed to provide access to proposed national recreation area along the Delaware River that would have been built in conjunction with the controversial Tocks Island Dam project as well as alleviating traffic on the existing road. However, like the US 206 freeway proposal in southern New Jersey, it was not built.
US 206 was widened in Byram Township to six lanes. This construction follows a decade of controversy, including concerns that the widening would violate the Highlands Water Protection and Planning Act passed in 2004; an exemption to this act allowed the construction to proceed. The widening is being done in order to eliminate backups on the current two-lane stretch during rush hours. The project was slated to be finished in November 2013.
|0.00||0.00||To US 206 / Hillsborough Road||Current southern terminus|
|1.31||2.11||To CR 514 (Amwell Road)||Road closed to traffic north of intersection|
|1.66||2.67||Dead end||Current northern terminus|
|1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi|