Parks: Why does it have to take so long?

Do any of you care about the state of the parks in Hoboken?

I’m sure some people may be indifferent, but many of us feel otherwise. We all know Hoboken is cramped as we watch many new (and sometimes beautiful) real estate developments get built very often and very quickly with often little resistance.

Why can’t the same be true for the parks?

Getting them built, zoned, or approved seems to be more like pulling teeth. Even with “Open Space Intitiatives” promised by our city years ago, we still have nothing much to show for it except old brochures and continual chatter.

openspacemap1sm.jpgThe big and exciting “Open Space Initiatives” poster that was originally put up on the Hoboken City website almost two years ago had been shrunken down to a thumbnail, and you cannot seem to directly download the .PDF file anymore. However, thanks to the Internet Archive, we can see what Hoboken promised long ago, and even discover where to download larger versions. Can you read that? –>

Below is the how the original image used to look back in January of 2005 and a link to the PDF in case you’re interested in seeing it. Why doesn’t the city have a section on their website that allows the users to “browse all PDF files”? This was buried deep inside with no direct link available.


newc1.jpgRemember the “Pier C” promise? “Construction to start Spring 2005”, then “2006”, then… nothing. While the concept was a bit unrealistic (to put tennis courts or beach volley ball or whatever that round concoction is), it was still open space. Can someone re-confirm that this is never happening? If so, why does the city even still have it on the website?

But hey, we still ought to be thankful.

We still have “My Park” on Observer and Jackson Streets. “Grab the kids and the picnic basket, Honey! We’re headed over to the park!”

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29 Comments on "Parks: Why does it have to take so long?"

8 years 11 months ago

Where was the “proposed” rooftop tennis facility going to go? I know that they had no issues ripping up the only two tennis courts next to Hoboken High school football field in the spring..which, by the way, was perfect timing. I mean, who plays tennis in the spring and summertime?

8 years 11 months ago

Don’t forget about the lush “park” at the end of the ShopRite parking lot. Who needs any more open space when we’ve got that?

I like how that downloadable PDF colors everything green around existing buildings to try and make it look more park-like.

What a joke.

8 years 11 months ago

don’t forget about the full page ad in the hoboken reporter this week talking about the progress they’ve made so far. Someone should write a follow up letter and perhaps mention a few things:

– Pier c will be several years late

– The upcoming 14th street park was the direct result of local residents going to get funding from an outside agency, the city only came along for the ride at the last minute. (the city had planned for condos)

– What about the shop-right park? The mayor counts it when he talks about new park space – why not put it in the paper.

– They’ve been talking about upgrading the madison st. park for several years – no progress.

– What about the community center / pool that the mayor put in all of his campaign literature…perhaps because there is no progress? And there won’t be any progress until the developers get their land via eminent domain.

8 years 11 months ago

I think we should just tear down the old age homes in the center of town and turn that into a big park…

Red Haven
8 years 11 months ago

The Mayor’s “Open Space Inititiative” was a developer-driven crock from the word go. It’s nothing but a flier designed to fool people into thinking something is getting done. Let’s begin with the portion marked “In Progress”

— MAXWELL PLACE — If you zoon in on the Maxwell Place portion what you notice is nearly half of the parkland in the drawing already exists. They included Elysian Park to it look like they were creating more parks than they actually are.

Also note on this drawing you can see the plan for a “recration of Elysian Field”. Now via Hoboken411 we can see all Toll Brothers has built is a gated elevated lawn with no ballfield.

— PIER C PARK — Keep in mind this was in the works well before David Roberts became Mayor, and nobody is sure where they money is that was originally earmarked for this project. It should have been finished by now. Conclusion: Not Likely in our lifetime.

— HOBOKEN COVE — The portion shown essentially indicates the lawn around Toll Brothers’ massive Tea Building complex. There needs to be a more cohesive plan for the site, tied into 1600 Park and Weehawken’s cove property, but it won’t happen with David Roberts in charge.

— LINEAR PARK (Green Circuit) — This is the plan that URSA/Tarragon has drawn up for the far Northwest of town. Zoom in and you will see a number of tan rectangles. The one at the bottom is supposed to be a school with a ballfield. Not going to happen. The School Construction Authority ran out of cash before it got to Hoboken.

The lighter tan rectangles are all high-rise condo buildings that Ursa-Tarragon wants to build in exchange for the “green space” which is just lawns in front of high-rise condos. And the ballfields shown North of the 14th street aqueduct? The owner of that property doesn’t want to put ballfields there. It’s a ruse. Not going to happen.

— STEVENS TECH ICE SKATING PARK — No shot of this happenning without us footing the bill to borrow millions to build Stevens a gigantic riverfront parking garage. Roberts wants it, but few others are on board.

— ROOFTOP TENNIS FACILITY — This was proposed for the top of one of the Hudson Street garages. No effort has been made to follow through on this more than two years after Roberts proposed it. A joke from the word go — just like Davey’s promise to bring the trolley back to Washington Street, and follow through on Pupie Raia’s plan for Diagonal Parking.

— 1600 PARK AVE — Roberts said there was no money to buy this land. HobokenParks.Org sought out and secured sources of funding for it… then Roberts took the credit. The picture you see here is an artist rendering. There is currently no plan for an active park at this site, but there are rumors some sort of “Equestrian Center” for the Police Horses may be secretly in the works.

— COMMUNITY REC CENTER AND SWIMMING COMPLEX — Ursa/Tarragon was supposed to build this, and others like it at no cost to taxpayers in exchange for redevelopment rights in the Northwest area. The developer has been backing down from the pledge.

When the eminent domain fight was underway at 10th and Grand, Councilman Ruben Ramos said Ursa/Tarragon won’t build the community center if the city doesn’t take other property for them to build condos. A total crock, but the current crew at City Hall won’t call Ursa/Tarragon on this because without their money they don’t get re-elected.