A lawsuit has been filed against a project that aims to reduce the lanes of Atlantic Avenue in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The lawsuit, filed by casino operators and AtlantiCare, alleges that the project, labeled as a “road diet,” will result in traffic congestion and obstruct emergency vehicles from reaching AtlantiCare’s emergency facility. The project proposes to reduce the lanes from four to two along Atlantic Avenue between New Hampshire and Boston Avenues.
The plaintiffs claim that the city needs to secure approval from the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA), which oversees tourism in the city, as the project will impact traffic and emergency vehicle access. They also allege that a comprehensive study about the impact on traffic was not conducted. As a result, they asked the court to enforce an injunction, temporarily stopping the road diet.
In response, the city’s defense rejected the claims that the project needs the approval of the CRDA. They argued that no statute or regulation requires approval from CRDA, and therefore the city had no obligation to seek approval from them. The city’s defense also stated that the project was accompanied by a traffic study that examined its impact on traffic. They addressed the concerns about emergency vehicle delays by explaining that experts confirmed the project wouldn’t impact the flow of emergency vehicles.
The case is set to return to court on January 26, 2024, where each of the parties will present their arguments in front of Judge Michael Blee. The city’s defense is asking the court to deny the requests listed within the lawsuit filed by AtlantiCare and the casino operators. As the legal battle continues, the future of the road diet project on Atlantic Avenue remains uncertain.