Bids for Madonna Field Project in Livingston Get Competitive


LIVINGSTON, NJ - When the Madonna Field Project went out to bid, Livingston Township Manager Michele Meade said there were an extensive number of bidders and that the contract will be ready to sign as soon as the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) approves the permits without making any substantial changes.

After receiving recommendations from Township Engineer Jeannette Harduby as to which bid to accept, the Township Council agreed to the recommended $2.1 million based on the size of the project. Even though the lowest bid was less than $1.8 million, Meade said that adding roughly 20 percent to the pricing would ensure that the project has enough funds for contingency.

“We had really great pricing and had a huge amount of bidders,” said Meade, who was enthusiastic about the competitive bidding. “We just don’t know at this time whether the DEP may require a substantial change, which would probably negate this pricing and we would have to go out to bid again. We’re not looking to order any contracts until we have the permits."

Sign Up for E-News

In the meantime, the Township Council is awaiting comments from the DEP before signing a contract in case of any unexpected changes that would require the project to be sent back out to bid. According to Meade, some substantial changes might include moving the location of the field or its structure, although she does not anticipate there being any major changes and anticipates that the excess 20 percent will cover any minor changes.

One the permits are approved, the council hopes to begin work on the project by April 25.

In other news, a conversation resurfaced about an elementary-school student’s idea to build a walking bridge on Wardell Rd. near Collins Elementary School. In addition to this being an impressive idea brought to the council by a passionate child, Mayor Al Anthony said it is also a “green” initiative that will allow students in the area to and said that he supports the idea.

The council said that it had looked into a grant several years ago when the child first vocalized this idea, but it was denied and hasn’t been looked at since. In order to get the ball rolling on this project, the council said it is looking to get the Livingston Board of Education involved.

A new Master Gardener in the area, who heard about the Livingston Township Council’s plan to somehow enhance the Riker Hill Art Park, brought another “green” initiative to the council on Monday by suggesting a community garden.

Master Gardeners, a county-based program through Rutgers University that people can sign onto each year, were assigned to locate a site in the Essex County area that has enough water and sunlight to harvest and maintain a successful community garden. Since the council recently suggested brainstorming different ways to enhance the Riker Hill Art Park, which is the highest point in Essex County, an aspiring Master Gardner proposed bringing in professional Master Gardeners who could add their expertise to the Riker Hill Art Park upgrade.

“I saw the announcement that you were considering doing some sort of upgrade project at the Riker Hill Art Park and it was coincidental that I am currently in the Master Gardener program,” she said. “It has to have people willing to participate in the concept of community garden. A community garden is one that can be any number of things: It can be vegetable plots that people sign up to work on or a beautification garden [etc.].”

Two issues that would need to be inspected before approve the community garden project included installing a fence to keep deer and groundhogs out and checking on the quality of the soil in the proposed area.

Mayor Anthony, stating that the Riker Hill Art Park is technically county property, said he liked the idea but that the Essex County Executive would have the ultimate say in whether a community garden is a possibility.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News


Register Now to Save Over $200 at West Essex Cheer and Tumble Academy

July 22, 2018

WEST ORANGE, NJ - West Essex Cheer & Tumble Academy is now offering $75 off per month for your first three months. Register now at, use Code TAP to receive $75 off per month for your first three months. 

Children who take the after-school classes also qualify to receive a $40 per month discount on any of the gyms All ...

Save $2.50 on Next Visit to Livingston Car Wash

LIVINGSTON, NJ — Drivers can save $2.50 the next time they get their vehicle cleaned at Livingston Car Wash.

Come to Livingston Car Wash at 111 E. Mt. Pleasant Avenue for a car wash and $2.50 will be discounted from the regular price.

Upcoming Events


Tue, July 24, 7:00 PM

Livingston Public Library, Livingston

Meet the Author: Lucy Tan

Arts & Entertainment


Sat, August 4, 7:30 PM

Par 440 Restaurant & Lounge, SHORT HILLS

Solid Gold with Bobby Valli at Par 440

Arts & Entertainment Food & Drink

Man Stabbed in Valley Section of West Orange

July 18, 2018

WEST ORANGE – A West Orange man was stabbed Sunday evening during an attack in The Valley section of the township, according to officials.

Police were called the 300 block of Valley Road around 5:45 p.m. on a report of an aggravated assault. The 28-year-old victim was stabbed during an attack by a group of individuals who later fled the scene, according to township spokeswoman Susan ...

Livingston Town-Wide Campout, Movie Under the Stars Postponed

July 20, 2018

LIVINGSTON, NJ — ​Due to rain in the forecast, Livingston's Town-Wide Campout and Movie Under the Stars has been rescheduled from July 21 to Saturday, Aug. 18.

Tent setup will begin at 4:30 p.m., followed by games, a campfire, and Disney-Pixar's Coco at dusk!

More information about this annual event, part of Livingston's Youth Appreciation Celebration, can be ...

Rutgers Hikes Tuition, Student Fees for 2018-2019 Academic Year

July 20, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Rutgers University Board of Governors this week approved a 2.3 percent hike in tuition and fees, as well as increases for dorm rooms and meals, for the 2018-2019 academic year.

The increase now brings the annual cost for undergraduate students to $14,975, which is $337 more than this past school year.

Student housing will increase 1.9 percent, ...

Bitcoin Scam Targets Livingston Residents

July 22, 2018

Dear Editor:

As I frequently write, scammers are becoming more sophisticated each day.

A resident called to advise me of the latest scam, somewhat obvious from the contents of the letter received, but with the many scandals being reported on in various media, a possible reality, depending upon the recipient, but certainly not this resident.

The letter only provided a possible email ...

Would Shedding

How much wood wouldn’t a woodchuck chuck if a woodchuck could chuck woodn’t?


Enough already.  


I get it.  It is an easy mistake to make, misusing would and wouldn’t.  It happens to me all the time.


“Honey, when I said I didn’t see any reason why I would go to the ballet, I meant to say I couldn’t see ...

Summer Storm Checklist

New Jersey gets its share of severe weather – and those closest to the coast are particularly vulnerable to hurricanes and high winds. Here are some things you can do to help improve the safety of your family and home before a storm hits:

·       Be informed. Find out where the nearest shelter is, and map out different routes you can take ...