4th Ward News & Updates Including Southwest Park
I wanted to share some news and updates on several important quality of life issues in the 4th Ward.
I wanted to provide you an update on the much anticipated groundbreaking of the Southwest Park on Block 12. Earlier this year the City Council approved a low-interest loan application to the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust (NJEIT) in the amount of $4.7 million. This loan package also includes 19% principal forgiveness. The park includes underground storm water retention components, a dog run, child play area, event space, rain gardens, benches and tables.
Unfortunately, as a condition for approval of the loan application the Department of Environmental Protection is requiring Hoboken to complete a level 2 environmental review of the property. This also includes an archeological study searching for Indian ruins, colonial artifacts and signs of early man. The city raised an appeal for this study but was denied.
The City Council has already approved an amendment to the original contract to have this study completed. The new expected timeframe to break ground is now October. Construction will continue through the winter however. According to Stephen Marks, the city's Assistant Business Administrator and lead project manager for the Southwest Park final planting and landscaping will occur in the spring.
I'm disappointed with this recent news as we were really excited to break ground on the park this summer. Unfortunately, this required study is out of the city's control and we have to comply.
As I'm sure you've noticed many of our roads in the 4th Ward have now been repaved on Jackson, Monroe, 4th and 5th Streets. I'm proud to have accomplished this goal as I've been lobbying the Administration for a number of years to get our roads repaved. The road striping is weather dependent and will occur soon. In addition, I'm requesting more of our roads be repaved next year.
The transformation of our Community Garden at 3rd and Jackson Streets has been a two year project working with Hoboken Volunteers, Director Leo Pellegrini and his Department of Environmental Services team, Dan Hicks who manages the garden and the gardeners.
The garden had been devastated by Sandy and underwent a complete build out. We removed all debris and rocks, leveled the garden and installed fifty new 10x10 garden beds last year. This year, we continued to remove rocks and laid new gravel on the walkways. The final stage includes installing a new wrought iron fence within the next few weeks.
The garden has been a tremendous community success and now includes a wait list for plots! We hope to have a celebration party at the garden this summer.
We have accomplished a tremendous amount for the ward over the last four and a half years focusing on quality of life issues. We've put progress over politics and moved our ward FOURWARD!
I am running for reelection this November and will be out gathering petition signatures and conducting voter registration over the summer in our neighborhood. I hope you'll support my election and sign my petition to be on the ballot.
If you have any other questions regarding the park or any other 4th Ward related issues please don't hesitate to contact me.
I hope you and your family have a wonderful summer!