Rest stop still uses portable toilets 3 years after Sandy

"It's a disgrace." That's one driver's opinion on the three years its taken the NJ Turnpike Authority to rebuild the flood-damaged Grover Cleveland Service Area in Woodbridge.

The rest stop was flooded during Superstorm Sandy, and three years later, it's still closed. No restaurants to feed hungry motorists and no bathrooms with running water. Drivers griped about the conditions Wednesday as they trudged through the rain to use the portable toilets in the back parking lot.

A Turnpike Authority spokesman said construction of a new building is actually ahead of schedule, and insurance companies wasted a year haggling over who would pay what portion of the damages.

He added that HMS Host, the company that runs the stop, had always estimated that a year would be needed for planning a new building with another year for construction. Still, that is no comfort for drivers.

The rest stop has traditionally been one of the turnpike's busiest, located just north of the Garden State Parkway junction on the northbound side. The rest area is slated to reopen, in full, next month.