Construction to Begin in Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area

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MONROE COUNTY -- Road and bridge repairs are soon to be underway in one of Monroe County’s popular tourism spots. The Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area plans to kick off several major projects this month.

April showers bring May... construction. That’s just what’s about to kick off in Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.

The National Park Service said bridge and road projects are set to start this month. River Road is getting repaired along with sections of Route 209, just south of Milford, right during the peak of tourism time, May through November.

“We don`t anticipate actually closing any of the roads, what we anticipate is just having lane closures that will actually allow traffic to go one lane of traffic at a time,” said Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area Spokeswoman Kathleen Sandt.

Ronald Gilgallon serves up hot dogs at the Hound Dog Café on Route 209 and said this work, along with paving at Milford Beach access, Kittatinny Point Picnic Area and others may hurt business and upset tourists.

"It affects their opportunity to enjoy the state, and it affects our opportunity to make better business," said Gilgallon.

Even some year round businesses like the Pocono Indian Museum, just off Route 209 said they too are just learning about this construction now, and it has them a little worried.

"It's going to be a nightmare, it's no question, if it's going to be through the National Park because we do see an awful lot of traffic coming from Milford using Route 209,” said Pocono Indian Museum Owner Malcom Law.

The park service said it is also working on the Joseph McDade Recreational Trail Pedestrian Bridge. It was washed out in 2011 by Hurricane Irene.

All work, business owners said needs to be done and they’ll learn to live with this summer season.