I think only the States of Alabama and Mississippi are more corrupt. Anyway, the state has been building a bike path that runs along the Hudson from the George Washington Bridge to the Bayonne Bridge (18.5 miles total length) IT'S BEEN 20 YEARS AND THE BIKE PATH IS STILL NOT COMPLETED. I've been looking forward to riding this thing for years. Even NYC isn't this bad. NYC managed to build a bike path from the George down to the Battery in less then 10 years. I hope all the people responsible get kidnapped by Somali pirates. Bunch of ******-bags.
Kelly: Hudson River Walkway is far from finished
Sunday, June 22, 2008
Last updated: Thursday October 16, 2008, 1:28 PM
It seemed like such a fine idea: Build a walkway along 18.5 miles of Hudson River waterfront in Bergen and Hudson counties.
A continuous path stretching from the concrete and steel of the George Washington Bridge to the concrete and steel of Bayonne.
If New York City could do it along its Hudson waterfront, why not New Jersey?
But that was 1988, and time has a way of eroding our best intentions.
On what should be its 20th anniversary, New Jersey’s Hudson River Walkway is far from finished.
Answering that question is hardly simple. But a wide array of government officials point to a fundamental problem:
The state law, calling for the waterfront walkway, never put one government agency or even one developer in charge.
To save tax money, New Jersey left the building of the walkway to scores of waterfront property owners.
“A walkway by committee,” as one critic put it. Or as Scott Brubaker, chief of the state Bureau of Coastal and Land Use Compliance and Enforcement, noted: “That’s probably the single largest reason why certain segments of the walkway have not been built yet.”
Two decades ago, the idea seemed simple enough, even inspired: Each owner or developer would build a section of walkway following common specifications — a 30-foot-wide space that includes 16 feet of walking pathway, bordered by 14 feet of grass or shrubs. Over time, each piece would be linked, akin to hooking together freight cars in a long train.
But some owners delayed building anything — and are now targets of state investigations. Then, some property owners built classy-looking pathways, with landscaped gardens, lighting and brickwork. Others took a cheaper way out and, in some cases, installed paths that are far narrower than the state guidelines.
The result is an uneven waterfront walkway, with nettlesome, trash-strewn gaps — and no firm date on when everything will be completed.
By contrast, New York City took less than a decade to finish its Hudson River walkway, from the George Washington Bridge to the Battery. But New York’s path had one builder — the city.
“Right now, New York is putting us to shame,” said Peggy Wong, a board member of the non-profit Hudson River Conservancy and one of the walkway’s most stalwart proponents. “It’s horrifying what we’re doing here.”
Eleven of the 18.5 miles of walkway are finished, according to the state Department of Environmental Protection. Several stretches are even considered civic gems. In Hoboken, for example, a new harbor promenade, built on the site of run-down docks that were the backdrop to the movie “On the Waterfront,” now lures thousands of residents on summer weekends.
But Hoboken is an exception.
On at least 5.5 miles of the waterfront elsewhere, the DEP became so frustrated with foot-dragging by developers that it redrew its walkway maps and allowed the “path” to run inland, along city streets and sidewalks.
Civic activists have complained. But little has changed.
“The worst-case scenario is that residents will give up and say there is nothing we can do,” said Helen Manogue, president of the waterfront conservancy.
Some of the most nagging problems begin in North Bergen and stretch into Edgewater and its 3-mile sliver of Bergen County waterfront.
With its expansive views of Manhattan, Edgewater has long been a magnet for condominium developers and investors. But amid such potential beauty — and money — are some of the walkway’s most formidable obstacles.
Behind a shopping center near Edgewater’s defunct Binghamton Ferry restaurant, a narrow portion of the walkway dead-ends into a set of trash Dumpsters and a chain-link fence. Beyond the fence sits an oil tank farm.
Farther south, near a Japanese steakhouse, the path dead-ends into another chain-link fence.
From there, the path winds around a golf driving range and enters an uninterrupted stretch popular with joggers and walkers. But after two miles, the path ends — at a toxic waste dump.
Just south of the dump sits the former site of the Unilever research plant. The 23-acre tract, vacant for several years because of litigation, is slated to become Edgewater’s newest development — and the site of the borough’s new municipal center and another section of the waterfront walkway.
But even if that section of walkway is completed, several other parcels of land just to the south have no walkway. In once case, land for the walkway fell into the Hudson.
“It’s ridiculous,” said Jill Kleinman, an Edgewater resident and walkway proponent. “The last thing they seem to think about when they sell properties is whether we will have a walkway.”
On a recent morning, Frank Petrucci, a 26-year-old independent filmmaker, left his Edgewater apartment for a run on the waterfront path.
He selected a northbound route — and actually jogged unencumbered for more than a mile. But then, he ran into a marina and a series of fences.
Petrucci turned around and headed home.
“You can’t beat it,” he said.
But he was commenting of the view of the Hudson River and Manhattan.
Looking at the pathway he had just jogged, Petrucci shook his head and smiled.
“When I run, I give myself a little obstacle course,” he said.