Route 3 is a state highway in northern New Jersey, extending 10.84 miles (17.45 km), connecting Hudson County and Passaic County in the west. Its western terminus is at an intersection with U.S. Route 46 in Clifton and its eastern terminus is at an intersection with U.S. Route 1/9 in North Bergen. Route 3 is sometimes called the Secaucus Bypass.
The beginning of Route 3 is a divided highway but not up to freeway standards, as there are a few businesses on this part of the roadway. Three miles further down, the road becomes a freeway, but does not meet Interstate Highway standards. The intent of this road is to lead towards the Lincoln Tunnel. From 1939 to 1959, NJ 3 extended east along Route 495; it was truncated back to its original terminus when the approach was redesignated Interstate 495 (now New Jersey Route 495) as a spur of Interstate 95.
The east end at US 1 and 9 was channelized and traffic lights were added in 1959; it had formerly been a circle.
There is a local-express lane configuration between the western spur of the New Jersey Turnpike and Route 495.
The section of what is now Route 3 from US 46 in Clifton to Route 120 in East Rutherford was built in the late 1940s and early 1950s and was originally designated Route S3 (indicating a spur of Route 3) until the 1953 renumbering, when Route 3 was shifted onto its current alignment. In 1942, a spur of this road in Clifton was commissioned, later labeled Route S3 Spur; this route was renumbered Route 161.
In the 1953 New Jersey state highway renumbering, Route 3 in Secaucus was shifted off its original alignment on surface streets to the newly built Secaucus Bypass. The original alignment then became Route 153. Only the section west of Paterson Plank Road was state-maintained after the renumbering, and the entire route was decommissioned c. 1988.
In mid August 2007, the NJDOT announced that it would replace the Route 3 bridge over the Passaic River (which connects the City of Clifton to the Boro of Rutherford). This project is supposed to be completed by December 2007, at an estimated cost of $3.7 million.
|Passaic||Clifton||0.00||Westbound exit and eastbound entrance|
|0.00||Valley Road - Montclair, Paterson||Westbound exit and eastbound entrance|
|0.51||Grove Street - Montclair, Paterson|
|1.26||Broad Street (CR 509) - Bloomfield, Paterson|
|1.53||Westbound exit and eastbound entrance|
|2.64||Bloomfield Avenue - Bloomfield, Passaic|
|3.82||Main Avenue - Nutley, Passaic|
|East Rutherford||6.96||Meadowlands Sports Complex: Racetrack, Stadium|
|9.12||Secaucus (Paterson Plank Road)|
|9.89||Harmon Meadow Boulevard||Access to westbound exit is from NJ 495 only|
|10.04||North Bergen (Paterson Plank Road)||Access to westbound exit is from NJ 495 only|
|10.50||No eastbound entrance (NJ-3 becomes NJ-495 after US-1&9 exit; leading to the Lincoln Tunnel to New York City)|
|10.84||Eastbound exit and westbound entrance|