Archive for the 'land use' Category

Rahway River flooding update

 

DSCN1486Looks like a possible win-win situation in the ‘Dam Saga’. There are a number of smaller steps being taken to remediate flooding of the Rahway River in Millburn, Springfield, Cranford and further downstream.  The ‘Dam’ was defeated and now the The Mayors Council Rahway River Watershed Flood Control is endorsing ‘Rain Gardens’ in addition to other solutions.

There is state money to help with the solution as a result of our NJ Senators Booker & Menendez.

1) There will be more ‘storage’ upstream in the Orange Reservoir to lessen peak storm waters flowing to affected areas.

2) Channel widening and deepening downstream

3) Correcting bridge obstructions

4) Constructing Rain Gardens which divert runoff from buildings from going to the river and instead direct the water to a growing number of public gardens in several towns

For more info and a list of the ‘rain gardens’ see the link below.

http://www.nj.com/suburbannews/index.ssf/2015/03/mayors_council_rahway_river_wa_7.html

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Dam in the South Mountain Reservation (update)

DSCN1486

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It would appear that the option of building an enormous (880 foot long, 70 foot high) dam in the Rahway River Watershed in the South Mountain Reservation is now ‘off the table.’   The Council of Mayors voted unanimously to concentrate on other options in an effort to lessen flooding farther down the waterway in Cranford.

Many people upstream are thankful, as are the grassroots group, Save Our Reservation chaired by former Maplewood Mayor Fred Profeta.  His group and the Council of Mayors advocated in favor of alternate solutions.  The alternate solutions include:

1)  adding extra capacity in an upstream body of water, the Orange Reservoir by dredging and creating two new outlets to release storm water.

2)  improving/dredging channels downstream in Kenilworth and Cranford and directly raising some homes in the floodzone in order to mitigate damage in Cranford.

The very expensive Army Corp of Engineers dam proposal would have flooded big sections of the reservation. Brookside drive which runs thru the reservation would have had to have been re-routed above the dam and the flood zone.  See the facebook page to see how much land would have been affected and also a link to NJ.com for more info.

https://www.facebook.com/#!/SaveOurReservation/photos/a.488166641290006.1073741827.488153374624666/505868879519782/?type=1&theater

http://www.northjersey.com/news/mayors-say-no-to-reservation-dam-1.1007116

Maplewood Sprouting Solar Panels

two solar panels on Oberlin in Maplewood

Maplewood is sprouting solar panels on telephone poles and other public spaces in residential areas.  In order to take advantage of vertical space, PSE&G has implemented its Solar4all project, installing single panels to grow it’s percentage of renewable energy.  It will own all the panels, the power and credits associated with its generation and will pay for maintenance.  Third party host sites will recieve revenue from rental of the space and the possibility of publicity.

http://www.pseg.com/family/pseandg/solar4all/third_party/index.jsp

When it’s apple blossom time in Orange, NJ we’ll really make a peach of a pair

Jefferson St. Mural

Abandoned Industrial Buildings > Inexpensive Lofts > Starving Artists > Transportation > Good Ethnic Food Musicians > Fun Bars and Clubs > Fashion > Clothing > Contractors > Real Estate Condos > Banks > GENTRIFICATION SEQUENCE COMPLETED

Ironworks, Orange, NJ

Will this happen in Orange, NJ ? Look into Valley Arts District’s galleries and lofts.
I want to check out HAT CITY KITCHEN http://www.hatcitykitchen.com/indexf.html
on 459 Valley in Orange.   Good Food, Live Music, Drinks
ironworks party
NEXT DAY UPDATE:
Went to Hat City Kitchen:  Excellent Shrimp with Grits Dish and Killer Pecan Pie!
Went to the Ironworks party today and actually painted for the first time in ages.  This guy’s painting was much better than mine though.

Springfield Avenue business district improvements

springfield ave.

South Orange and Maplewood need to attract retail and office businesses to hopefully take a bit of the property tax burden of homeowners. Maplewood Township Committee voted to extend parking limits in the Springfield Ave. business district from 1 hour to 2 hours between 8 am and 6 pm.  They also voted to introduce more money that would pay for new bump-outs, curbs, pavements, trees, grates, streetlights, benches and trash receptacles in the area of the Springfield Avenue streetscape improvement project Princeton Street to Tuscan Road).   Daibes Enterprises is interested in developing ground floor retail in the area.  For more details – http://maplewood.patch.com/articles/springfield-avenue-is-focus-of-township-committee-meeting

Beifus property sheriff sale in South Orange

Beifus lot from South Orange Ave.

For anyone following public affairs or property taxes in South Orange, the continuing Beifus property foreclosure saga is about to add a chapter.  On June 1, there will be a sheriff sale.

Behind the fence, and next to the train station is continual vacancy, dispute and lost revenue for the town.  Before being demolished six years ago, it was the home of Beifus Mercedes, a car dealership.   Hopefully now there will finally be a break in the legal, financial and political inertia that has deadlocked this prime piece of property for nearly 10 years.

Nearby are the possibilities of what could be.  On the other side of the train station are the new luxury condos on Vose, Eden Gourmet and the rooftop restaurant, Above.  But at 9 West South Orange Avenue, the weeds grow and the fence has worn down.  With the property now in foreclosure, the courts are in charge.  Andrew Beifus Jr., 67, the property’s owner and developer has received the lion’s share of the anger over the project and he has since moved from the area.

In hard times, when the village relied on $750,000 in extraordinary aid to help balance its municipal budget, the Beifus project represented more than just an eyesore, but a massive loss of revenue in the form of property taxes and economic activity.

The property was also an integral part of the village’s redevelopment zone, a central business district development plan created by the Township of South Orange Village in 1994.  Since then the stops and starts have been too numerous to detail here.  For more details on the foreclosure and sheriff sale please see the link below.

http://maplewood.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/04/30/beifus-lot-sale-is-now-june-1/

Beifus lot

Maplewood Earth Day (week) schedule

Earth Day in Maplewood, NJ

Saturday, April 17, 9-11:30 a.m. — Village Alliance Spring Planting sponsored by Valley National Bank. Volunteer in Downtown Maplewood Village to help plant flowers in  flowerpots.   Scout, school and church groups are welcome.  Flowers and soil provided, so please bring gardening tools and gloves.

Saturday, April 17 10:00 a.m.-noonDeHart Community Ctr Home energy conservation literature distribution. Help the Green Team energy conservation group distribute information on the attractive NJ Clean Energy programs which provide financial support for households that take energy conservation measures.  There are excellent programs to provide financial help and advice on ways that almost all Maplewood households can reduce their energy waste.  The Hilton and Lightning Brook neighborhoods will be the focus on this morning. Just show up at the DeHart Community Center or contact money4energy@gmail.com for more information.

Sunday, April 18, 9:30-noonForest Regeneration Corps. Join the South Mountain Conservancy to help remove invasive plants and plant native plants. Meet at Wildflower and Forest Preserve at the dog park parking lot off Crest Drive. Long pants recommended. Water and gloves provided.  All ages welcome. Call Tricia Zimic, to see if poor weather will cancel at 973-650-6106.

Monday April 19, 7:30 p.m.Green Drinks. Steve Tesoriero of Renewable Resource Systems will speak about home energy efficiency. Learn how to take adantage of Clean Energy programs and save money on your energy bill. O’Reilly’s Bar and Grill, 2208 Millburn Avenue.

Wednesday, April 21, 7-9 p.m. at Memorial Library (downstairs) — Organic Gardening Lecture given by Jan Zientek, Essex County Master Gardener Coordinator.

Thursday, April 22, 4-5 pm at 225 Prospect St, South Orange, NJ 07079   Join us on Earth Day as we use recycled items to make creative crafts.  Ages 4 and up.  Parents must accompany children. Registration is required.  Please visit Customer Service or call 973.669.3196 to reserve a spot.  Phone: 973.669.3196  Email: denise.dagnino@wholefoods.com  Price: $5

Saturday, April 24, 10 a.m. — Composting Demonstration. Virginia Lamb Falconer will lead a composting workshop at the Recycling Center, 359 Boyden Avenue. Learn how to turn your household waste into valuable fertilizer while reducing your trash. For more information, contact virginialamb1@yahoo.com.

Saturday, April 24, 8 a.m.-noonShred-a-thon Event. Clear out your old financial and personal records. Bring your old papers and watch them get shredded on the spot. At the Recycling Center, 359 Boyden Avenue. For more information, contact Diane Thomson at diane.thomson@verizon.net.

Saturday April 24, 10 a.m.-12 noonRahway River Cleanup. Come help clean up the Rahway River. Meet at Memorial Park off Dunnell Road near the walking bridge for an assignment to help clean up the Rahway River.


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