BAYONNE, NJ - Cleanup of chromium is almost complete at Dennis P. Collins Park, said Tom Cotter, Superintendent of the Bayonne Department of Public Works. But the new park won’t be the same as the old park once the city begins to restore it.
The space, located at the southernmost portion of Bayonne just across the Kill Van Kull from Staten Island, was long used as a dumping ground for industrial waste from across Hudson County.
“They dumped it and then spread it around,” Cotter said. “While the cleanup involved removing the dirt some of it migrated to the waterfront. There are also pockets that once discovered, everything had to stop and we have to test again.”
From a recreational perspective, the park also includes a variety of features from Brady’s Dock on its eastern end to the Bayonne Little League fields on the western side.
At this point, Cotter thinks the most significant part of the cleanup is complete and barring any unforeseen consequences, the rebuilding of the park will start early next year.
“We expect to go out to bid to rebuild the park in January or February,” Cotter said. “We’re going to be adding things that weren’t there before and doing away with things that weren’t being used.”
While features such as the basketball courts will be rebuilt, some of the passive recreation components that were not used on that section will be eliminated in favor of features that they might be better unutilized in the future, including a hockey rink, Cotter said.
The first phase will also include new fencing, new playground equipment, a new walkway, landscaping and other similar features while future development is expected to include the reconstruction of the tennis courts, two new dog parks, two volleyball courts, and more fitness equipment.
Cotter also pointed to the skateboard park which was recently added and said that “people took time to get used to it, now it’s one of the most popular things in the park.”
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