9 Garden State Parkway Service Areas To Be Renamed After NJ Icons

In honor of National New Jersey Day yesterday, Gov. Phil Murphy announced that nine Garden State Parkway’s service areas will be named after members of the NJ Hall of Fame.

Service Area’s New Names Include

  • Montvale: James Gandolfini Service Area (the late “Sopranos” actor who grew up in Park Ridge)
  • Brookdale North: Larry Doby Service Area (the late baseball player who grew up in Paterson and was the first Black player in the American League)
  • Brookdale South: Connie Chung Service Area (the TV journalist that lived in Middletown)
  • Vauxhall: Whitney Houston Service Area (the late super star who grew up in East Orange)
  • Cheesequake: Jon Bon Jovi Service Area (the rock star who grew up in Sayreville and now lives in Middeltown)
  • Monmouth: Judy Blume Service Area (the children’s author who grew up in Elizabeth)
  • Forked River: Celia Cruz Service Area (the late Latin singer who lived in Fort Lee)
  • Atlantic: Frank Sinatra Service Area (one of the greatest musical artists of the 20th century who grew up in Hoboken and viewed Atlantic City as a second home)
  • Ocean View: Toni Morrison Service Area (the late Nobel Prize-winning novelist who lived in Princeton and taught at Princeton University)

Not only are the rest stop names changing but each stop will have an exhibit featuring NJ Hall of Famers. The exhibits will have artifacts and information on the inductees.

“This is about putting New Jersey greatness on full display,” Murphy explained.

If you’re wondering why rock star Bruce Springsteen didn’t get a service area named after him, it’s because he “respectfully declined”. Since the NJ Turnpike service areas already have historical ties to the state, those will not be changed.

“Millions of New Jersey drivers travel on the Garden State Parkway every day,” state Transportation Commissioner Diane Scaccetti-Gutierrez shared. “The service areas they visit during those travels are a fitting place to call attention to the accomplishments of their fellow New Jerseyans in the arts, entertainment, and sports.”

NJ plans to install other exhibits throughout the state including a permanent NJ Hall of Fame home at the American Dream complex.