Other NJ News

Passaic County Holds Public Meeting for Feedback On Morris Canal Greenway Project

1c7ef9b50904b10726ba_DSCF1916.JPG
Passaic County planners and engineers visited the Little Falls Civic Center to discuss the Morris Canal Greenway Project with residents on July 11. Pictured is one of the exhibits. Credits: Tina Pappas
c35a9f0aa69c16c97727_DSCF1923.JPG
Pictured is Jason Simmons, senior environmental planner for Passaic County, who spoke to a local resident regarding the Morris Canal Greenway Project at the Little Falls Civic Center on July 11. Credits: Tina Pappas
74f458bde1e7518d1678_DSCF1920.JPG
Pictured is Jonathan Pera, principal engineer for Passaic County, speaking with local residents about the Morris Canal Greenway Project at the Little Falls Civic Center on July 11. Credits: Tina Pappas
3252b546b1984e3e01fa_DSCF1921.JPG
Jonathan Pera, principal engineer for Passaic County, reviews a map of the Morris Canal Greenway Project with a meeting attendee. Credits: Tina Pappas
c94a41826b6c2708c28f_DSCF1918.JPG
Little Falls Mayor James Damiano discusses the Morris Canal Greenway Project with Renea Shapiro, founder of the Little Falls Alliance for a Better Community at the July 11 public meeting. Credits: Tina Pappas
1c7ef9b50904b10726ba_DSCF1916.JPG

LITTLE FALLS, NJ - Planners and engineers from Passaic County were recently on hand at a special meeting at the Little Falls Civic Center to discuss the installment of a bridge that will be placed over the Peckman River in order to complete the Morris Canal Greenway, which spans hundreds of miles throughout Northern New Jersey. 

The goal of the project is to create a passive recreational pathway along the route of the Morris Canal, according to Jason Simmons, senior environmental planner for the Passaic County Planning Department. Considered a historic site, the Morris Canal was started in 1831 and stretched approximately 102 miles long. It became one of the state's first major transportation systems, which was eventually overshadowed by the railroad system, and then by interstate highways.

However, there are still many areas of the canal route that are still intact and the project's planners want to turn the former route of the canal into a recreation corridor that will transport hikers and bicyclists. Passaic County planners want to open additional sections of the canal route for public use, in order to bring the project to different communities and create a county-wide system. Fifty-seven percent of the route is already accessible with several municipal canal parks and bicycle paths in Little Falls, Woodland Park and Clifton. The study has also been adopted as part of the Passaic County Master Plan, as well as the township's plan.

Sign Up for E-News

Several exhibits were set up inside the civic center at the meeting, some of which entailed the history of the Morris Canal, the Morris Canal Greenway route, and the Peckman River Crossing timeline. There was also a display of several types of bridges that could span the connection, along with a suggestion box for the public's ideas and Post It stickers for attendees to indicate their preferred design preferences.

According to Simmons, the bridge will create a connection in Little Falls where there is currently no connecting walkway.

"This current disconnect is preventing about a mile and a half of continuous Greenway walkway," said Simmons. "Once we get the Browertown Road section, which we are in the process of having authorized, that's going to run from Passaic Valley High School, right around Stewart Avenue to Mount Pleasant Avenue in Woodland Park, which will add additional miles of dedicated bicycle lanes, signage, safety improvements."

He added there are also plans in the works to create a pocket park at Lackawanna Avenue and Browertown Road.

"There is an existing piece of a towpath on that road where county planner did a land swap to acquire it," Simmons noted.

He added that federal funding for the bridge was approved in 2012. Simmons highlighted the Peckman River Crossing construction timeline exhibit for those in attendance.

"We have a timeline for this particular bridge project that marks all the milestones throughout the project's history and we anticipate having it authorized by December," he said, adding the project would need to be completed in two years in order for the county to retain the federal grant money and prevent it from expiring. 

Simmons further added that the project was budgeted for approximately $700,000. The preliminary bridge was estimated to span 150 to 200 feet or more, at worst case scenario.

"However, survey work determined that the bridge would span 100 feet, so the amount is more than enough to cover that and any additional costs," he explained, adding that any unused grant money would go back to the federal government.

"We have a preliminary estimate based on the current plan," he said. "We hope to have the timeline ready for the grant's guidelines once we have all the construction documents for the NJDOT, which include the specifications, bids and permits."

Simmons said county officials plan to review the input and feedback made by those who attended the public meeting at their own meeting scheduled for this week.

According to Jonathan Pera, principal engineer for the Passaic County Engineers' Office, the pier-less bridge will span 100 feet, with a walking span of 10 feet. It will consist of reinforced concrete, prefabricated steel and wood.

Renea Shapiro, founder of the Little Falls Aliiance for a Better Community (LFABC) said the addition of bridge is a good idea, which will help with safe connectivity for those who want a continuous route through the canal pathway.

Mayor James Damiano said the event was great opportunity for residents to discuss any concerns and make any comments they may have with the project.

"The bridge that is being discussed is part of not only the county’s master plan, but the township’s as well and helps move us one step closer towards achieving that goal. This bridge will assist in connecting many miles of this greenway and is just part of the effort at historic and open space preservation by both the county and the township."

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Verona/Cedar Grove

National Weather Service Issues Heat Advisory Through 6 p.m. Tuesday July 17

July 16, 2018

NEW YORK, NY, - The National Weather Service issued a 'Heat Advisory' this morning for Bergen, Passaic, Essex, Union and Hudson Counties in New Jersey. The heat advisory will remain in effect from noon Monday July 16 until 6 p.m. Tuesday July 17.

Extreme heat can cause illness and death among at- risk population who cannot stay cool. The heat and humidity may cause heat stress during ...

Cedar Grove Police Blotter

July 8, 2018

July 2, 2018 – July 8, 2018

On July 3, 2018 at 7:22 a.m., Ptl. Kristian Schneider responded to a David Road address to take a report of a suspicious vehicle. The resident observed a black four door vehicle stop in front of her home at approximately 5:20 a.m. She noticed that both passenger side doors were open and then observed two black males walking from the area of her driveway. She ...

Presbyterian Church Steeple, a Roxbury Landmark, Gets Overdue Attention

July 15, 2018

ROXBURY, NJ - The long-sought restoration of the iconic, but decaying steeple atop the First Presbyterian Church of Succasunna is underway.

Using a massive hydraulic boom lift, workers from Main Street Custom Homes and Remodeling of Succasunna, got a close-up look today at the 165-year-old structure. The company, headquartered a few doors away, is volunteering the project management ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, July 18, 7:00 PM

Hospital Conference Room 2 (Ground Floor), Glen Ridge

Becoming a Parent

Health & Wellness

Carousel_image_c59c9acb1abc7cdb8c6a_mini_magick20180510-124227-5wdsnf

Mon, July 23, 9:00 AM

Sellitto Field, Verona

Verona Football 2018 Summer Camp

Sports

Mon, July 23, 7:00 PM

Hospital Auditorium, Glen Ridge

Tour of the Birthing Center

Health & Wellness

Mane Place II in Verona Celebrates 30 Years in Business!

July 13, 2018

Mane Place II located at 654 Bloomfield Ave. in Verona recently celebrated their 30th Anniversary with week long specials and discounts leading up to a ribbon cutting event on Saturday, June 30th with township officials including Mayor Kevin J. Ryan, Councilman Jack McEvoy, Councilman Alex Roman and Director of Economic Development, Steven Neale.

'Servant of Two Masters' exudes foolish fun

‘Servant of Two Masters’ makes for foolish, frivolous fun

By Liz Keill

MADISON, NJ –Carlo Goldoni’s “The Servant of Two Masters,” in a rousing translation and adaptation by Bonnie J. Monte, has the outdoor audience at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey laughing and clapping all the way through.

The yearly production, held at the amphitheatre on the ...