5 Things You Probably Don’t Know About the Garden State Parkway
We either love it because we can quickly get from one place to another during the winter -- or we hate it because it takes forever to get from one place to another in the summer. What would we do without the Garden State Parkway? Here are some fun facts that you probably don't know about one of South Jersey's busiest roads.
The Garden State Parkway is State Route 444 -- but you'll never see a sign for Route 444. For simplicity purposes, only the familiar green and yellow circular Garden State Parkway signs will aid your travels from one end of the state to the other.
You probably know this but maybe have never realized it -- it's really easy to drive on the Garden State Parkway without ever paying a toll, especially in Atlantic County. Washington Avenue in EHT to Jimmie Leeds Road? No toll. Atlantic City Expressway to Tilton Road? No toll. Another section of Parkway, between Exits 129 and 140, is also toll-free.
Unlike the Atlantic City Expressway or any other major road, you won't find any billboards on the side of the Garden State Parkway. The Parkway was designed to have a natural feel and blend-in with the surrounding environment. Most of the signs on the Parkway are mounted on brown colored (rusty) poles and not on silver ones like most roads, again, to blend in (although it's hard to make giant green signs blend in with trees).
What is a Park-ette? Back in the 1950s at a handful of rest stops on the Parkway, women were hired to provide information to motorists and occasionally do little odd jobs. These women were called "park-ettes."
Keenly aware that the Garden State Parkway was going to run through areas that didn't have much to look at, engineers who built the road put lots of little curves in to make it less likely to fall asleep behind the wheel. The next time you drive on the Parkway, notice that there aren't many very long stretches of straight roadway. And all of the trees between the northbound and southbound lanes? That naturally reduces headlight glare.