Route 92

Coface Moves To East Windsor

Corrections or additions?

This article by Bill Sanservino was prepared for the September 24,

2003 issue of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Life in the Fast Lane: Penns Neck EIS

Anyone interested in seeing the final version of the

Penns Neck Area Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) — scheduled

to be released this month — will have to wait a while longer.

According to a state Department of Transportation spokesperson, the

EIS will likely not be released until the end of this year.

The purpose of the project is to remove the traffic lights from the

Route 1 intersections of Harrison Street, Washington Road, and Fisher

Place. A public hearing was held on a draft EIS in late June and

concerned

parties were allowed to submit comments in writing through August.

"We’re still reviewing comments and making sure everything is

taken into account," says Michael Horan, DOT deputy director of

community relations. "We hope to have the completed EIS out by

the end of the year, December or maybe November."

The draft EIS, released in early June, proposed 19 different

alternatives

and the impacts of each on the surrounding environment, residents,

roads, and historical structures. Costs range from $12 million to

$97.5 million depending on which options are chosen. The final EIS,

according to Horan, will include the recommended alternative for

construction,

or a decision not to build anything.

The option that has been agreed to by officials in the Princetons

and West Windsor, where the project would be built, calls for Route

1 in-a-cut under Washington Road; an east-side connector road running

through the Sarnoff property to Route 1 just south of Harrison Street;

and a west-side connector road that leads traffic away from Harrison

Street residential areas.

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Route 92

<%-2>Meanwhile, a draft EIS is due to be released soon

on the Route 92 project being proposed by the New Jersey Turnpike

Authority. The road would be another major east-west connector, and

has been on the planning rolls for almost 60 years.

In May, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers delayed the release of the

draft EIS at the request of state officials, to give Governor

Jim McGreevey’s office, the state Department of Environmental

Protection,

and the DOT an opportunity to review the impact of the project on

the state’s smart-growth initiatives.

"The draft EIS statement was scheduled to be released when the

state requested we hold off on it for a number of months," says

Pete Shugert, spokesman for the New York district of the Army Corps.

"We wanted to bring in expertise on land-use and smart-growth

to the table to make sure the EIS is properly structured."

Turnpike Authority spokesman Joseph Orlando says he received a letter

from the Army Corps of Engineers in May stating the project was on

hold. "The DOT, DEP, and the governor’s smart-growth group are

looking to make sure that all land-use, environmental, and

transportation

issues are adequately addressed."

Opponents argue that construction of Route 92 west of Route 130 will

spawn more traffic and sprawl in what is now the largest remaining

portion of open space in Middlesex County.

"Route 92 requires the filling of 14 acres of wetlands and it

will lie in an area designated on the state’s development and

redevelopment

plan as rural farmland and critical habitat," says Janine Bauer,

executive director of the Tri-State Transportation Campaign. The

organization

also argues that the highway would generate an additional 10,000 to

15,000 new vehicles per day on Route 1 south between Ridge Road and

Lawrenceville.

The proposed 6.7-mile, limited-access roadway would link Route 1 near

Ridge Road with the NJ Turnpike at Exit 8A of the New Jersey Turnpike.

The road would cut through the northern tip of Plainsboro and run

east to west through much of South Brunswick along Friendship Road.

The estimated cost is $350 million.

Route 92 was supported by former Governor Christie Whitman and

officials

in Plainsboro and West Windsor, who contended it would relieve traffic

on Route 1. The federal Environmental Protection Agency opposed the

plan in 1998, but the state DEP supported it the following year. The

Turnpike asked the Army Corps for permission to fill wetlands, but

the Corps in 2000 said an environmental impact statement would be

needed.

The Corps will use the EIS to determine whether to issue a permit

allowing wetlands to be filled, but the governor retains final say

on whether to approve the project.

— Bill Sanservino

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Coface Moves To East Windsor

Coface, a French firm that bought part of the CNA

business

located at 1100 Cornwall Road in Monmouth Junction, moved 60 people

to Building 100 at Windsor Corporate Park on Friday, September 19.

Coface is a credit insurance and credit management firm with

operations

in 56 countries and 83,000 customers.

CNA Credit previously had an alliance with Coface for its export

credit

insurance. When Coface bought CNA Credit last January, the unit was

named Coface North America Inc. The unit supplies credit insurance

for vendors who are concerned about getting paid. If the insured debt

remains unpaid, the insurer pays part of that bill. Premiums for a

domestic policy range from less than .1 percent to .5 percent of

covered

sales. For international policies, the premiums are slightly higher.

At Windsor Corporate Park Coface joins two insurance companies (Utica

National Insurance and Maxima), and a collection company, OSI

Collection

Services. Other tenant companies do healthcare and medical consulting

(ACNielsen/HCI, PERQ/HCI, CBIZ KA Consulting, and Liberty

Communications

Network), financial services (ExpertPlan), and engineering (Bala

Consulting

Engineers). The park used to be the home of GE Astro.

Matt Malatich of CB Richard Ellis represented both Coface and the

park owner, GMH Capital Partners in the lease of just under 17,000

square feet.

Mike Ferrante heads Coface North America. Traded on the Paris stock

exchange, Coface offers numerous ways to manage, finance, and protect

commercial transactions, and it also gives businesses the option to

outsource all or part of their trade receivables management.

One of its two core businesses, credit insurance and credit

management,

features the Common Risk System, a shared risk credit management

system

that is updated in real time and tracks 44 million companies

worldwide.

The second core business is trade receivables management and

collection,

plus Coface has three side businesses — guarantee insurance,

B-to-B

marketing, and trade receivables financing. In France, it manages

export credit insurance on behalf of the state.

Coface North America, 50 Millstone Road, Windsor

Corporate Park, East Windsor 08520. 609-469-0400; fax, 609-490-1581.

www.coface-usa.com.


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