Environmental Services News
On Tuesday, December 6th, Mayor Dawn Zimmer signed the contract to acquire the 6-acre BASF property in northwest Hoboken.
The property will be used to create what will become Hoboken’s largest park – a 5-acre “resiliency park” with a 1 million gallon underground stormwater detention system. The project is being planned in partnership with North Hudson Sewerage Authority which will separate the combined sewer system in the area surrounding new park and divert stormwater runoff to the new detention system. Often, the combined sewer system is overwhelmed during heavy rain events, resulting in backups into streets and private property. By keeping stormwater out of the combined sewer system, the project will further reduce localized flooding. The project will also include western Hoboken’s first municipal parking garage on the northernmost lot.
The Hoboken City Council voted unanimously yesterday to support a $5.2 million bond ordinance to fund priority upgrades to the city’s water mains.
“We are taking a proactive approach to repairing our century-old water system to make it more reliable and save money in the long run,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “These priority upgrades are in addition to the replacement of the water mains along all of Washington Street and build upon our commitment to improve all aspects of our city’s infrastructure.”
Suez Water conducted an evaluation to identify 50 pipe segments with a total length of 32,200 linear feet (6.34 miles) as the highest priority areas for refurbishment. The analysis considered historical main breaks, conducted a hydraulic evaluation, and included a risk-based prioritization.
The $5.2 million bond would fund the replacement of approximately a third of the highest priority water mains in the first year of the upgrade process. The segments to be upgraded in 2016-2017 include:
• Park Avenue (6th St to 8th St)
• Garden Street (Observer Hwy to 2nd St)
• Garden Street (12th St to 14th St)
• Madison Street (4th St to 6th St)
• River Street (1st St to 4th St)
• Clinton Street (6th St to 7th St)
• Jefferson Street (Newark St to 1st St)
• Grand Street (6th St to 8th St)
• 7th Street (Adams St to Grand St)
Mayor Dawn Zimmer joined other Hoboken officials, dignitaries, and members of the public for a groundbreaking ceremony for the Southwest Park – a one acre park in southwest Hoboken designed to hold 200,000 gallons of stormwater runoff that will also serve as a model for green infrastructure resiliency parks in New Jersey. The property is currently a surface parking lot and is the first phase for a larger Southwest Park.
“The Southwest Park project will transform a parking lot into a green oasis for this thriving neighborhood and will be a model for building resiliency parks that help mitigate flooding,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “This park has been a goal of mine since 10 years ago when I was a stay-at-home mom advocating with my neighbors, and it is the reason why I got involved in government. I am thankful to all of the community advocates, the City Council, Hudson County, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust for their strong support of this project.”
The park will feature passive recreational space, a dog run, moveable cafe tables, a pop-up market zone, restrooms, multi-level seating for small performances, free public Wi-Fi, and a lawn with child-friendly interactive park features. It will also include green infrastructure (rain gardens, shade tree pits, porous pavers, a cistern for rainwater harvesting and reuse) and an underground detention system to reduce stormwater run-off and localized flooding.
“For over ten years, it’s been a labor of love to fight for the breaking ground on this park,” said Councilman At-Large David Mello. “Countless friends and neighbors have worked together to make this cutting edge open space a reality for our growing and ever evolving southwest neighborhood. I’m so happy for the whole community that this project is finally breaking ground, and was honored to have helped bring it to fruition.”
Park renderings, project updates, and additional information is available at www.hobokennj.gov/swpark.
“Hoboken’s Southwest Park plan is an outstanding example of an innovative, multi-benefit project,” said Jane Kenny, co-chair of Jersey Water Works, a cross-sector collaborative focused on transforming New Jersey’s aging and inadequate water infrastructure. “This park will not only help solve the problem of chronic flooding in the area, but will reduce sewage discharge into the Hudson River and transform a paved parking lot into a vital and healthy recreational green space serving one of the most densely populated communities in the country. All of us at Jersey Water Works applaud today’s groundbreaking, and are delighted to see this plan become a reality.”
Funding to purchase the property was provided from a $3 million Hudson County Open Space grant. Financing to construct the park is provided through a low-interest loan from the New Jersey Environmental Infrastructure Trust.
In preparation for the fall 2015 tree planting, the City of Hoboken’s Shade Tree Commission is seeking property owners who would like a tree planted in the sidewalk adjacent to their building and who will agree to care for and water the tree. Qualifying property owners can have a street tree planted in exchange for a suggested $100 contribution towards planting costs and a pledge to keep the tree well-watered.
Property owners who would like a tree planted in a sidewalk tree well in front of their home should complete the online request form at www.hobokennj.gov/boards/stc/treerequest. Requests will be handled on a first-come, first-served basis, subject to available funding.
Each location requested will be surveyed by a professional from the Department of Environmental Services to ensure there are no conflicts with the surrounding infrastructure and that the site is a suitable one for a tree to grow and thrive.
Requests can be made for existing empty tree beds as well as paved sidewalk locations. If a tree well does not exist, one will be opened. Trees will not be planted on private property; only in sidewalk tree wells.
Trees are only planted during our two planting seasons: Spring (March 1 to May 31) and fall (October 1 to December 31). The next anticipated planting will take place in October or November, 2015.
As part of the City of Hoboken’s street resurfacing program which will include more than 50 blocks of roadway in 2015, paving work will take place on Friday, May 15, 2015 on Jackson Street from Paterson Avenue to 6th Street.
On Monday, May 18, paving will begin at 8:00am on 4th Street between Jackson Street and Monroe Street. In order to minimize traffic disruptions, paving of the southernmost section of Jackson Street from Newark Avenue to Paterson Avenue is scheduled to take place beginning at approximately 9:30am following the morning rush hour. The work is expected to last several hours. During this time, Jackson Street will be closed between Newark Avenue and Paterson Avenue. Through traffic will be permitted on Newark Avenue, but turns will not be permitted onto Jackson Street. Through traffic crossing over Jackson Street will not be permitted along Observer Highway or Paterson Avenue. The road will be reopened as quickly as possible once the asphalt has set, however there is a possibility that it will remain closed through the evening rush hour, so drivers should expect delays and plan alternate routes.
If time allows on Monday, following the paving of Jackson Street from Newark Avenue to Paterson Avenue, the contractor will begin paving on Monroe Street from Paterson Avenue to 3rd Street. On Tuesday, May 19, the contractor will complete the paving on Monroe Street from Paterson Avenue to 3rd Street and pave 5th Street from Jackson Street to Madison Street. Please note that there will be multiple roads closed to traffic while the pavement cools.
The Jackson Street repaving project originally included work at the intersection with 1st Street as part of the 1st Street streetscape revitalization. Due to multiple utility conflicts, it will not be possible to install the planned rain garden curb extension at the intersection of 1st Street and Jackson Street. Other improvements will be made to the intersection instead including a bioswale along the Jackson Street sidewalk, the addition of a new tree in an existing empty tree pit, replacement and expansion of broken sidewalk, and an epoxy gravel curb extension with street planters and stanchions for improved pedestrian safety.
The City of Hoboken is partnering with the Community Compost Company to implement one of New Jersey’s first residential composting programs. The program offers residential pickup service now and will offer drop spots at three locations in Hoboken starting in June.
“Hoboken is proud to be a leader in sustainability with the first residential composting program in Hudson County and one of the first in New Jersey,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “In addition to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, composting could save taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars every year. While it costs us $100 per ton to dispose of trash in a landfill, it would only cost about $40 per ton to dispose our food waste at a composting facility. We especially look forward to partnering with schools, food establishments, and larger apartment buildings to address our largest sources of food waste.”
Residents can choose compost pick-up service for $20-35/month, or on Saturdays beginning in June, residents can bring their separated food scraps and other organic materials to one of three drop spot locations in Hoboken for free. Residents may bring their materials in any containers they choose, however garbage bags and non-compostable refuse will not be accepted. Residents can visit www.communitycompostco.com to sign up for pick-up service or to get more information about drop spot locations and timing. Businesses and organizations interested in composting should email email@example.com to discuss services.
“We’re very excited to work with the City of Hoboken to expand our organics recycling program,” says Eileen Banyra, Owner of Community Compost Co. “It is absolutely the right place at the right time to advance such a program. Bringing awareness to the complexities surrounding food waste and the benefits of composting is key to our mission.”
Garbage from Hoboken is transported to a landfill in West Virginia and tipping fees alone cost $100 per ton of waste. Separating organic materials for composting is an easy way to divert waste from the landfill and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in addition to helping the City of Hoboken save money by cutting down on landfill fees and the volume and frequency of garbage collection.
Community Compost Company takes collected food scraps to farms where they are recycled into compost, which is used to fertilize the soil.
What can you compost?
All food (including fruits, vegetables, meat, bones, dairy, grains, eggshells, coffee grounds), food-soiled paper, napkins, paper towels, uncoated paper, plates, and tea bags.
What can’t you compost?
Plastic, metal (aluminum foil, staples in tea bags), Styrofoam, liquids, frozen food boxes, chemicals, compostable plastics.
The City of Hoboken is implementing a faster, more efficient, less expensive, and longer-lasting approach to repairing potholes and will be completely repaving more than 50 blocks of roadway beginning this spring.
The City has contracted for “Pothole Killer” trucks to make repairs city-wide. With spray injection technology, a single vehicle operator controls a hydraulic boom, which clears the pothole of debris, applies liquid asphalt to fill and seal it, and then tops it off with a dry aggregate coating. The whole process takes roughly 90 seconds per pothole.
“I thank Director Pellegrini for bringing this great new technology to Hoboken that will save us money and make long-lasting repairs faster than ever before,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer. “We’re committed to quickly completing these repairs and repaving more than 50 blocks of our worst roads this spring.”
In three days in January and two in April, a single Pothole Killer truck filled nearly 1,000 potholes. The truck will continue to be used to make repairs in the days ahead. Residents can assist by reporting potholes via www.hoboken311.com or through the Hoboken 311 application for iOS and Android. The City is coordinating with Hudson County for repairs to County roads, especially 1st Street and Observer Highway.
“In the past, we used cold patch to temporarily repair potholes and then had to make permanent repairs in the spring with hot asphalt when the asphalt plants opened,” said Environmental Services Director Leo Pellegrini. “To make matters worse, the cold patch material would often be ripped out, requiring us to contract for heavy duty equipment to vacuum up the gravel and rocks from roads. This new approach eliminates an entire step and is faster, safer, less expensive, and even works in below freezing temperatures. In addition, by not tying up our resources on repairing potholes, our crews are all focused on cleaning up our streets now that all the snow has melted.”
Due to the forecast for snow, street cleaning enforcement will be suspended for Thursday, March 5, 2015 so that crews can focus on salting and plowing roads. Enforcement will resume on Friday, March 6, 2015. All other parking regulations remain in effect.
Due to the weather, PSE&G will not be conducting work on the Energy Strong project on Thursday. As a result, Temporary No Parking signs posted on the following streets can be disregarded for Thursday, March 5, 2015:
• Washington St (5th – 8th) West Side
• Washington St (8th – 9th) East Side
• Washington St (9th – 10th)
• Washington St (10th – 11th) East Side
• Washington St (11th – 13th) West Side
• Washington St (13th – 14th)
• 9th St (Hudson – Washington)
• 12th St (Hudson – Washington)
• 12th St (Bloomfield – Willow)
• 14th St (Washington – Bloomfield)
• Willow Ave (6th – 9th)
• Willlow Ave (9th – 11th)
• Grand St (5th – 6th)
The travel ban in Hoboken and the State of New Jersey has been lifted as of 7:30am. If driving, please exercise caution. Crews continue to spread salt, but roads may remain icy due to low temperatures.
Parking remains prohibited on snow emergency routes until further notice. Alternate side parking (street cleaning) regulations are suspended today, January 27, 2015. All other parking rules remain in effect.
PATH Service will be restored at 9:30am on a weekend schedule, Newark – WTC & JSQ – 33 via Hoboken, operating every 15 minutes. Port Authority Bridges and Tunnels have reopened.
NJ Transit Hudson-Bergen Light Rail is running on a weekend schedule. NJ Transit buses in North Jersey will resume by 11:00am. NJ Transit rail service will resume later this afternoon after mandatory federal inspections are complete.
Garbage pickup will resume on a normal schedule.
Property owners/occupants are reminded that they have six hours after the completion of a storm to remove snow and ice from sidewalks adjacent to their property, along with adjoining wheelchair ramps or curb cuts. Snow and ice must be cleared from gutters a width of 2 feet into the street. It is illegal to shovel snow back into the street or on a fire hydrant. Residents in multi-unit buildings with management companies should ensure that they are aware of City regulations in order to avoid fines. Residents are encouraged to assist elderly or disabled neighbors and to clear snow from fire hydrants. Additional details on city code regarding snow removal for property owners can be found at www.hobokennj.org/snow. Inspectors will be checking for uncleared sidewalks as of noon.
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for our area from 3am to 1pm on Monday, January 12, 2014. A mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain is forecast, with up to an inch of snow and up to a tenth of an inch of ice. Hazardous travel is expected due to icy roadways so please plan extra time for the morning commute.
The City of Hoboken will spread salt brine on streets this afternoon in anticipation of the icy weather, so streets may appear white. Pre-treating roads prevents snow and ice from bonding with the pavement. All parking regulations, including street cleaning, will be in effect on Monday, January 12, 2014. If conditions change, an additional announcement will be made.