Yesterday was a HUGE day for Hoboken- in particular, those folks in the ass-end of town (KIDDING!) who have suffered forever without the most essential amenity of urban living- a public park.
Yesterday, officials broke ground on the 1-acre Southwest Park and underground detention system beneath it, a $7 million project to provide open space and mitigate flooding in the city's southwest corner.
Thanks to Jeanette Josue of Hudson County View we have the excellent live report above.
Thanks to a GA Earwitness, we have the excellent not-live report below:
The ceremony was wonderful. It was a great testament to Reform and the changes that have been brought to Hoboken under Mayor Zimmer and a reform majority of sane and rational council members. I don’t miss the Axis of No, Bet Mazin, the purple pillow fluffer, that sour faced and nasty Castellano or the two previous mayors who wound up in federal pin stripes. There was an easy and upbeat mood in the air and the assembled dignitaries looked relaxed and were smiling, all except Romano. He stood there shifting his weight like he was about to dump a load in his pants, shifting back and forth with a look on his face like he had just sucked on a lemon.Wow, what a scene! Thank you Earwitness.
By the way, Russo was a no-show and Ramos had his father stand in for him. Tim O. was there. I guess that it was just too much for Romano to face, alone, the fact that the Mayor is popular, and was being roundly praised as setting the bar for every municipality regarding design for parks and making good on her promise to bring a park to the SW part of Hoboken.
The guy from DEP was especially effusive with his praise about the Mayor’s intelligence and skill in surrounding herself with great people, her ability to work well with others and to get results. Even the guy from the NHSA gave her props. But she also spread around the credit and the praise, taking a trip down memory lane and talked about John G.who knocked on her door and got her involved in the SW Park coalition. No mention of Mr. Sara. And Mr. Sara and the Toxic Twins were no shows, after all of Mr. Sara’s howling about the SW Parks coalition that was supposed to be her legacy and all of the efforts of the noxious duo to undermine the Mayor and her efforts to get the park. No one missed them.
The only off note, besides Romano’s palpable discomfort, came at the end of the speakers, when everyone left the tent and walked over to the mound of dirt and the shovels for the photo op. Stick walked up to the microphone and started talking some kind of nonsense about the police department having to now patrol and protect the park, as if the park was going to be a scene straight out of Panic in Needle Park or something. It was just plain weird. No one was really paying attention, and all I saw was a bunch of quizzical looks on the few folk who were still under the tent. It was as if he could just not let people enjoy the celebration without cocking his leg like a junkyard dog and pissing on the moment. I don’t think that even he knew what the hell he was saying, but he just HAD to say something. It was like a fart in church. The guy has issues.
Folks, what a great day for our city. GA thanks all those who worked to make it happen
Personally, I cannot imagine life in Hoboken, which included raising a child, without nearby Church Square and Columbus parks.
To those who wait, come great things. This new Hoboken park is going to be very special.
Hudson County View has more on that:
“This was a team effort, we are standing here today, we are together going to be transforming this parking lot into the first phase of the Southwest Park,” explained the mayor.The new Southwest park is going to be great! Can 6th Ward folks use it, too?
“This is going to become a green space, a green plaza with kid friendly amenities, and dog friendly amenities. And an amphitheater for community to come together for performances and pop up market spaces.” (WOW!)
The park will also feature café tables, interactive park features, restrooms and free WiFi. (WOW!)
The green infrastructure includes “rain gardens, shade tree pits, porous pavers, a cistern for rainwater harvesting and reuse” and there will also be a detention system to reduce stormwater and localized flooding. (Double WOW!)
In area where there is not a lot of green space, David Zimmer, the executive director of the NJEIT Trust, referred to the park as a “very valuable community asset.”
David Zimmer (no relation to the Hoboken mayor) also highlighted another environment benefit.
“In additional, all of this covered area and the historic landfill underneath it, are going to be removed. Over 6,000 cubic feet. That can be pretty harsh stuff and all of that is going to be gone. It will no longer be part of your community.” (Hooray!)