Dear friends and neighbors:
Normally my call to action is for you to come out and oppose something important.  But tonight, I need you to join me and be part of something important - the design of the new Harborside Park.  This is part of the $230 million Rebuild By Design Anti-Flood Project and it will be one of the largest parks in Hoboken that is at the gateway to our city.
YOUR INPUT TONIGHT IS CRITICAL!  I went to the meeting on Monday night and it was really interesting.  There were about 40 people there, although not many from the area surrounding the park given the meeting was downtown.  Below are the three designs that were shown with the purpose of collecting feedback from you to further revise the design for the next round of public input.  All three of these designs already reflect input from prior public design workshops and I think do a great job capturing what people indicated they wanted to see in the parks - play areas, dog park, scenic vistas, open lawn and active areas.  
Please note that the anti-flood barrier will be underneath the design.  It effectively will be an average of 7-9' high structure that will run at an angle from the intersection of 15th and Garden to the intersection of 16th and Park.  So the landscape design will flow up, over and back down this structure.  
Based upon some comments at the Monday meeting and feedback I have already received, I want you to consider the following as you look at these drawings and when you attend tonight:
  • SAFETY- This is my biggest focus.  In particular, I am opposed to having a main entrance be at the corner of 15th and Park.  For anyone who lives near by, you know this corner is one of the busiest intersections, specifically the north east corner which is adjacent to the park.  Doing anything to encourage more pedestrians at that corner I think is dangerous.  I raised this with the design team and suggested that actually close off that corner altogether which will result in more usable space.  I also suggested a full fence along 15th street and Park Avenue to eliminate any risk of children or dogs running out onto two of our busiest streets.  I think of Central Park and the fence that borders the entire park.
  • OPEN GREEN SPACE - There is a lot.  But there is also a lot concrete plazas.  The feedback I have received from neighbors is there is too much concrete and not enough programmable green space, that the parks that are most successful in Hoboken are the ones with the most green space, and that plazas are only used a fraction of the time which unnecessarily limits the use of the space most of the time.
  • COST TO MAINTAIN - The more details in the design, the more effort required to maintain, the more expensive it is to maintain, which means more tax dollars required to maintain it.  AECOM, the designer, wants to build an amazing park.  We all want that.  But we need to be realistic.  I asked them for the next meeting in a couple of months to bring two versions of each design - the low cost to maintain version and the high cost to maintain version.  Interestingly, this issue was raised by several residents the night of the meeting (proud mama moment...).
So with that, here are the three designs.  And I please please please please try to come out tonight!  Starts at 7 with the ability to review the designs, and the presentation begins around 715 and goes to about 745/8.  And then small group Q&A after.  Come for all or even part - you can provide your thoughts at anytime.   
As always please forward this to anyone you think may be interested and feel free to reach out via email, text or phone (201-208-1674) about this or anything else important to you.      
Hoboken City Council, 2nd Ward
Engage. Inform. Advocate.
“More Voices are Better”