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Hudson County Safety Hearing Frank E. Rodgers Blvd. Thurs. Apr. 18,/24

Apr 10, 2024
Map of Harrison NJ Red Bull Arena

The Hudson County Executive Craig Guy, along with the Hudson County Board of Commissioners, has announced a public hearing to discuss significant safety improvements slated for South Frank E. Rodgers Boulevard, stretching from Harrison Avenue to Cape May Street. This initiative, conspicuously leaving out the northern segment from Harrison Avenue to Sherman Avenue, has sparked curiosity among residents about the reasons behind the partial inclusion.

Scheduled for Thursday, April 18, 2024, from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m., the meeting will convene at the Harrison Community Center, located at 401 Warren Street. Notably, this session will be an in-person-only event. It would be helpful if the meeting was a hybrid with in-person and a virtual option.

The hearing will see participation from prominent figures and organizations, including members of the Hudson County Engineering Department, the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority (NJTPA), representatives from Michael Baker International Inc., and the New Jersey Department of Transportation.

The project's scope appears focused on enhancing intersections along the designated stretch of South Frank E. Rodgers Boulevard. However, the lack of detailed information on the official project website has left many questions unanswered, including whether the improvements encompass roadway paving and flood prevention infrastructure.

This new initiative follows a prior endeavor titled Harrison Streets For All, also funded by NJTPA. Despite conducting surveys and hosting street meetings, the project yielded no definitive recommendations for the Town of Harrison, offering only a compendium of suggestions with no specific recommendation.

Amid these developments, the project area encompasses the PSE&G property along South Frank E. Rodgers Blvd between Cape May Street & the Harrison Path Station—targeted by the EPA for a controversial Toxic Dioxin Laden Agent Orange Sludge plant—adds another layer of complexity. The proposed plant's location falls within the project area, raising concerns about the future of a Community Center and Green Space Park initially planned for the site.

Mayor James Fife's stance on the EPA’s proposal has yet to elicit any opposition, a position that could redefine a residential sector of Harrison back into an industrial zone, potentially altering the character of the project area significantly. Mayor Fife’s lack of opposition to the EPA toxic sludge project has members of the community stating that Mayor Fife has hidden the project from Harrison residents because he supports the project to put dioxin-laden sludge into the Harrison Redevelopment Zone.

The decision to exclude North Frank E. Rodgers Blvd. from the safety improvement project raises important questions about community division and the adequacy of infrastructure to handle increased industrial traffic, should the sludge plant come to fruition.

Community members are strongly encouraged to attend the upcoming meeting to voice their concerns and seek clarifications on the project's intentions and scope. The absence of a hybrid meeting format, however, limits broader participation and engagement, a point of contention among those unable to attend in person.

As Harrison residents stand steering down the barrel of an EPA project that could significantly influence the town's trajectory, it would be interesting to find out why Mayor James Fife continues to support EPA’s plan.

Articles of Interest:

NJTPA's Harrison Streets Project Needs Your Input & Participation

Harrison Missing 4 of 5 Redevelopment Promises

Former Councilman Anselmo Millan's Library Park Underground Parking Garage

Mayor Fife Legacy: Green Space Unfilled Promises & EPA Toxic Sludge.

Let Us Know Your Thoughts on Mayor Fife's Failure to Stop EPA's sludge dumping plan on our Community Discussion Board.  If you have not signed up yet to participate you can Sign Up now. Sign Up for Free.