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Old 07-22-2008, 06:46 PM
 
13 posts, read 68,703 times
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I really want to avoid any crazy make a quick lane change in traffic kind of situations. I do have time to go out of my way to avoid traffic. We have dinner reservations at the Crab Shell restaraunt in Stamford 8:00 pm then continuing on to New Haven. What about the first suggestion taking 78 west to Garden State Pkwy north to 287 east? Then connecting to I-95? Again this will be on the road at 6:30pm from Newark? I have never been to this area and am a little nervous also driving with two teenagers as well. All of these names of bridges and roads are new to me.
Thanks,
Mom
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:02 PM
luv
 
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The Cross County/Hutchinson route is very easy to take and the above poster reminded me even more of the signage (I've taken this route hundreds of times to visit my mom).

GW Bridge
Travel in right lane for exiting on right
Get off at Henry Hudson Parkway
Travel north by using the right lane
One toll $2.50
Go straight until you hit Cross County Parkway, exit onto CCP
NOTE: If you stayed in the right lane the whole time, you will end up taking the Cross County Parkway exit because its an EXIT ONLY lane. You cannot miss it. You will see the CCP exit only lane sign soon after you see a sign overhead for the Moshulu and Saw Mill River parkways.
Take CCP and when all of a sudden the highway splits into three different highways (with large signs giving you directions), you stay in the CENTER lane which says Hutchinson Parkway or Merrit Parkway north to CT. This will need you onto the Merrit and you will immediately upon hitting it (after Greenwich) see Stamford.

As far as traffic, we cant promise you anything. Last Fri I traveled that route at 12pm and there was no traffic; the week before I went at 2pm and there stop and go traffic the entire way beginning on the upper part of the Cross County and the entire Hutch/Merrit. However, you are getting off at the beginning of the Meritt and a lot of the way was clear, whereas the Cross Bronx Expressway is NEVER clear, it is backed up literally any time of the day and late into the night right from when you cross the GWB (whereas the Hudson is usually clear). At 6pm going to CT is anybody's guess. Maybe someone knows on the board. Summers are bad for traffic on a Fri night out of the city, lots of people escape.
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:09 PM
 
13 posts, read 68,703 times
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I appreciate the info. I am looking at the map now and writing down the info. I expect a slow commute but that will also give me time to figure out what I am doing.
Thank you for your time .
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:22 PM
 
12,120 posts, read 27,524,856 times
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Default Fridays are bad...

and the h Hudson/ Saw Mill will be very congested at that time as will the Hutch, possibly all the way into Conn. This is a major route going to the 'burbs from Manhattan and it's a nice route home on a Friday evening The CCP may be better because it has those express thru lanes. I don't think there's any way around it

But I think it's still better than sitting on the Cross bronx/Bruckner/new England Twy(I 95) which is unsightly and packed with trucks and is terribly intimidating to someone not familiar with the area

I'm wondering if the TZ bridge/I 287 combo would be as congested going the other way at that time of day; it may be lighter but you will have to then deal with traffic on the GSP going north

I would stick with the H Hudson/Saw Mill/CCP/Hutch even if there is congestion.
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:42 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC & New York
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The Henry Hudson to Cross County to Hutchinson/Merritt is much easier than the traffic that plagues the Cross Bronx; plus, the added benefit of this route is that there are no trucks allowed, since it's parkways the entire way. The main bottlenecks on this route are the merge from the Saw Mill to the Cross County and then when the Cross County east merges to the northbound lanes of the Hutchinson. There can also be a couple of slowdowns on the Hutchinson, by the fuel station in the median, and at some exits, but it's still not nearly as bad as the Cross Bronx can be on a bad day. And, the parkways have a slower speed limit, so you are not having to fight with high speed trucks, though some drivers do speed along in the left lanes. This route should take about 1:25 to Stamford.

The main hangup on the Jersey side will likely be at the GWB. I would definitely suggest staying to the right at the toll plaza, even though you cannot use the EZ Pass express lanes, since you need to merge to the right on the Upper Level deck to get to the Henry Hudson Parkway exit on your right at the end of the bridge span. I do it all the time, but sometimes one has to make their way over among traffic, trucks, and stop-and-go lanes. If you stay to the right, and sit in the backup of the toll plaza, this can be avoided since cash lanes also accept EZ Pass at the GWB.

Using the alternate route, you would take I-78W from Newark to the Garden State Parkway to 287E to the Tappan Zee to the Cross Westchester is another truck route, once you are off the GSP, compounded by the construction on the Cross Westchester, and unreliability of the Tappan Zee crossing as it can be wide open or jammed. Generally speaking, though, it is usually westbound on the Tappan Zee on a Friday evening where you will find delays, not headed eastbound, so it might be worth the risk; however, if you want to avoid trucks and stay with the parkways, the Henry Hudson route is definitely an easier drive. This route is a little longer, and would take perhaps 1:45 to Stamford with little traffic delay.

The only other option I could offer, other than the GWB, would be to take I-78E to the Holland Tunnel to lower Manhattan and then proceed north on West St., which turns into the West Side Highway, which turns into the Henry Hudson, which turns into the Saw Mill. You can get to the tunnel relatively easily from Newark, and would avoid much of the Turnpike, though you would have some traffic in Manhattan until you get onto the elevated section of the West Side Highway. It's nearly impossible to forecast the best route in advance of a trip, insofar as the traffic delays, since I have seen absolute nightmarish delays on the GWB with the tunnels being open, and then sometimes they are all congested. This route would take about 1:35 to Stamford.

Do you land at 6:30? If so, I would consider shifting your reservation to a little later, and I might do that even if I were leaving Newark at 6:30, since without traffic it's about 1:10 to Stamford using the GWB to Cross Bronx to I-95.
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:53 PM
luv
 
50 posts, read 150,807 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmwguydc View Post
The only other option I could offer, other than the GWB, would be to take I-78E to the Holland Tunnel to lower Manhattan and then proceed north on West St., which turns into the West Side Highway, which turns into the Henry Hudson, which turns into the Saw Mill. You can get to the tunnel relatively easily from Newark, and would avoid much of the Turnpike, though you would have some traffic in Manhattan until you get onto the elevated section of the West Side Highway. It's nearly impossible to forecast the best route in advance of a trip, insofar as the traffic delays, since I have seen absolute nightmarish delays on the GWB with the tunnels being open, and then sometimes they are all congested. This route would take about 1:35 to Stamford.
Be careful of this route because you'll likely get stuck in traffic going north bound on the West Side Highway (which has lights for several miles when entering all the way from the Holland Tunnel, which is in southern Manhattan), especially until you pass the GWB as many New Yorkers are taking that route to go to NJ. I've never taken the route from NJ during that time but I would think anything avoiding the City would be better.
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Old 07-22-2008, 08:07 PM
 
Location: Washington, DC & New York
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luv View Post
Be careful of this route because you'll likely get stuck in traffic going north bound on the West Side Highway (which has lights for several miles when entering all the way from the Holland Tunnel, which is in southern Manhattan), especially until you pass the GWB as many New Yorkers are taking that route to go to NJ. I've never taken the route from NJ during that time but I would think anything avoiding the City would be better.

I agree completely. That should be a last resort route, since the traffic can be very bad in Manhattan, and the Lincoln Tunnel, while closer to the elevated section of the West Side Highway, usually has more traffic getting to it in New Jersey and getting out in Manhattan. I do periodically take the Holland when the GWB is a nightmare, but I would take the Garden State route before the Holland Tunnel since you are headed to Stamford. The GWB is easiest, however, provided the traffic is cooperating, as sometimes the time reports of traffic delays are unreliable.
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Old 07-23-2008, 08:36 AM
 
13 posts, read 68,703 times
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We arrive Newark at 5:00 pm and I was figuring with luggage and getting rental car we should be on our way around 6:30PM. I found out that the restraunt doesn't take reservations so we wil just get there when we get there. We are taking all the advice in and staying on the parkways as suggested if I can stay in the correct lanes we should be fine. I have two boys who may or may not be of some help in the directions. The info is very helpful.

Thanks So Much !
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Old 07-23-2008, 10:42 AM
 
Location: Washington, DC & New York
10,750 posts, read 25,521,951 times
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That's good, since you might get on the road earlier or later, depending upon whether or not a small country's population has landed at the airport simultaneously. The exit lanes on the GWB can be confusing, but once on the parkways, don't worry, since it's relatively easy to find your way.

One other tip that has come to mind about the Cross County Parkway is there's a hill that you ascend after exiting (#4 on Saw Mill) and there are large road signs that tell you where the various parts of the road are headed. You want the through lanes for the Hutchinson Parkway northbound. This is a very short parkway, only about 5 miles, and at the merge to the Hutchinson, the far right lane becomes exit only at North Street, so you would want to move to the middle lane if not already there by changing lanes while still on the Cross County as you are approaching the merge; after the exit, that will become the right lane on the Hutchinson northbound.

And, headed to New Haven from Stamford, I would recommend getting back on the Merritt (CT-15) as it's a much easier drive than I-95 can be, though that depends upon traffic and trucks.
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Old 07-24-2008, 06:48 AM
 
12,120 posts, read 27,524,856 times
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Default In addition...

you only go through about 5 miles of NY City on the GWB/H Hudson and it's the nicer sections of the city as well (Inwood/Riverdale). The other advantage is that you cross the Hudson River early in your trip, you get out of the city quickly and make a quick venture to Ct in a northeasterly direction, with no trucks
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