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Belgian-Dutch Study: Why in times of COVID-19 you can not walk/run/bike close to each other.
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Belgian-Dutch Study: Why in times of COVID-19 you can not walk/run/bike close to each other.

Jurgen Thoelen
Apr 8

What is a safe distance when running, biking and walking during COVID-19 times? It is further than the typical 1–2 meter as prescribed in different countries!

In a lot of countries walking, biking and jogging are welcome activities in these times of COVID-19. However, it is important to note that you need to avoid each other's slipstream when doing these activities. This comes out of the result of a study by the KU Leuven (Belgium) and TU Eindhoven (Netherlands). (1)(2)(3)

The typical social distancing rule which many countries apply between 1–2 meters seems effective when you are standing still inside or even outside with low wind. But when you go for a walk, run or bike ride you better be more careful. When someone during a run breathes, sneezes or coughs, those particles stay behind in the air. The person running behind you in the so-called slip-stream goes through this cloud of droplets.

The researchers came to this conclusion by simulating the occurrence of saliva particles of persons during movement (walking and running) and this from different positions (next to each other, diagonally behind each other and directly behind each other). Normally this type of modelling is used to improve the performance level of athletes as staying in each other air-stream is very effective. But when looking at COVID-19 the recommendation is to stay out of the slipstream according to the research.

The results of the test are made visible in a number of animations and visuals. The cloud of droplets left behind by a person is clearly visible. “People who sneeze or cough spread droplets with a bigger force, but also people who just breathe will leave particles behind”. The red dots on the image represent the biggest particles. These create the highest chance of contamination but also fall down faster. “But when running through that cloud they still can land on your clothing” according to Professor Bert Blocken.

Out of the simulations, it appears that social distancing plays less of a role for 2 people in a low wind environment when running/walking next to each other. The droplets land behind the duo. When you are positioned diagonally behind each other the risk is also smaller to catch the droplets of the lead runner. The risk of contamination is the biggest when people are just behind each other, in each other’s slipstream.

On the basis of these results the scientist advises that for walking the distance of people moving in the same direction in 1 line should be at least 4–5 meter, for running and slow biking it should be 10 meters and for hard biking at least 20 meters. Also, when passing someone it is advised to already be in different lane at a considerable distance e.g. 20 meters for biking.

This is definitely information I will be taking into account and it also puts in perspective the closing of busy parks etc. Perhaps the better way is just running in the street, on your own or at least with sufficient distance. Stay safe…

https://medium.com/@jurgenthoelen/belg ... o-each-other-a5df19c77d08

Posted on: Yesterday 23:13
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Simulation shows how a cough can spread coronavirus in supermarkets
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Simulation shows how a cough can spread coronavirus in supermarkets

By Yaron SteinbuchApril 9, 2020 | 7:38am

Researchers in Finland have released a chilling simulation that shows how droplets from a single cough in a supermarket can hang in the air for “several minutes” and travel across two aisles — possibly infecting nearby shoppers with the coronavirus.

Read more and see video here:

https://nypost.com/2020/04/09/simulati ... d-coronavirus-in-a-store/

Posted on: Yesterday 23:07
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Re: Some Grubhub drivers are no-shows, N.J. restaurants say. ‘This might just put me out of business.’
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Sure, why not?

Texas Family Dressed in Dinosaur Costumes Brings Smiles to Grocery Shoppers During Coronavirus
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZw9l8ufw5k

Posted on: 3/30 16:00
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Some Grubhub drivers are no-shows, N.J. restaurants say. ‘This might just put me out of business.’
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Some Grubhub drivers are no-shows, N.J. restaurants say. ‘This might just put me out of business.’

Updated Mar 30, 2020; Posted Mar 29, 2020

By Amy Kuperinsky | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com

The food is ready, but no one picks up the order. Customers get frustrated after waiting an hour for their driver to arrive, then have to settle for a refund.

Rinse, repeat.

That’s what some New Jersey restaurants say has been happening when customers order delivery from Grubhub.

Food delivery has proven to be a lifeline for both customers and restaurants during the coronavirus pandemic, but in recent days and weeks, significant glitches have surfaced with drivers employed by the delivery service, restaurant managers and staff say.

Würstbar, a purveyor of sausages, hamburgers, beer and poutine in Jersey City, experienced one problem after another with Grubhub on Saturday night. The restaurant would get orders ready, but some drivers never showed up. The drivers, however, would mark the food as delivered.

“It happened about 10 times, all within the same period, with the same drivers,” owner Aaron Kahn told NJ Advance Media Sunday. “We’d call the (drivers’) numbers and it’d be a disconnected line."

He suggested that the drivers, who seemed to be changing their profile pictures but operating under the same names, might be using burner phones.

Worst of all, he said, this problem was coming to a head around 8:30 p.m., a peak time for orders.

“It’s been happening all week, but last night it happened a lot, to the point where we had to shut Grubhub down completely," he said.

The restaurant also uses UberEats. Now, Kahn is thinking about signing up for DoorDash.

“We are probably 80% delivery — maybe even 85% — 15 to 20% people calling or picking up.”

Kahn opened the restaurant almost four years ago. Now, he fears he may have to close.

Grubhub problems
Aaron Kahn, owner of Würstbar, says the business is already struggling as is, without the added stress of delivery problems.Würstbar

He started up Grubhub delivery again on Sunday, only to see the same problems recur.

“It happened twice now, same driver changed his profile picture," he said. “I have to shut down deliveries again. This might just put me out of business.”

“A driver will get a notification that an order is in their area and they’re accepting the responsibility of getting the order and immediately marking it as delivered," Kahn said. He wonders if those drivers are still receiving their delivery fee, despite never having delivered the food.

People have waited up to an hour, only to learn their food was never coming, he said.

“They were reimbursed (by Grubhub) but they’re still hungry," Kahn said. The restaurant also gets to keep the money from the sale of the food, but that does not fix the problem.

NJ Advance Media reached out to Grubhub. A spokeswoman said the company would be looking into the Würstbar deliveries.

“These are serious allegations,” she said in a statement. “We are treating them with the utmost importance and doing a thorough investigation. We have zero tolerance for this type of alleged misconduct. The vast majority of our orders are completed without incident or complaint, but when things don’t go as planned, we appreciate hearing feedback and work hard to make it right. If a restaurant partner ever has an issue with a delivery partner, they can specify that the driver no longer picks up from their restaurant through their Grubhub for Restaurants portal.”

Earlier this month, Grubhub announced it would temporarily suspend the collection of $100 million in commission payments from independent restaurants, in light of the pandemic and its effect on business.

Kahn said he’s often faced long waits to speak to Grubhub support, but flagging the drivers in question hasn’t put a stop to the no-show problem.

“All of sudden, the same person is taking orders again," he said.

Kahn said he’s also gotten conflicting answers about the source of the problem — one representative told him it happens all the time, while another seemed unaware of the issue. He said his account adviser has yet to get in touch.

“I’ve never seen it like this before. We’ve used Grubhub for three years now," Kahn said. “We’re scared to turn it on.”

But Kahn and other restaurant owners are hard pressed for other options in a climate where dine-in customers are not a reality, and not everyone feels comfortable venturing outside for takeout. He’s thinking about sticking with the app but bringing in a third-party delivery company. Still, in a rough time for business, it’s another worry he didn’t need to have.

“I feel really bad for these customers," he said.

At Tony Boloney’s in Jersey City, home to pizza, pasta and subs, the Grubhub problem is a familiar one.

“Last week I had some orders and the driver was accepting it as saying he would pick it up and he never came to the store," cashier Jefferson Brito told NJ Advance Media. Five orders were affected, and five refunds were issued, he said.

Brito said a manager had been in touch with Grubhub about the no-shows, but it happened again Sunday.

“They get mad at us," he said of customers. "It’s not on our end. It’s Grubhub’s end.”

“Some weeks it’s worse than others,” Brito said.

The issue has also played out over the last few weeks at Jersey Mike’s Subs in Hoboken.

“They (the drivers) just don’t show up and the customers will call us and complain and say I ordered it an hour ago,” said assistant manager Andre Wilson. Staff will usually tell customers to cancel the order or get a refund, he told NJ Advance Media.

“This is every day that it’s been going on like this," he said.

The scenario is all too familiar at yet another Hoboken restaurant, Surf Taco. A driver will say a customer received the food when the restaurant hasn’t even made the food yet.

“That happens a lot,” manager Meghan Kiernan told NJ Advance Media. "I think people are scamming Grubhub. It’ll be a fake (driver) picture and the same accounts keep happening.”

“On Friday, I had the same thing," she said. “I had almost 10 orders sitting here with the same driver."

As for reporting to Grubhub?

“We brought it to their attention numerous times," she said. “The people get banned but then they just make a new account with a new name and phone number.”

https://www.nj.com/news/2020/03/some-g ... t-me-out-of-business.html

Posted on: 3/30 13:25
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These are the internet providers offering free WiFi during coronavirus
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These are the internet providers offering free WiFi during coronavirus

By DAVID MATTHEWS
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS |
MAR 15, 2020 | 1:40 PM

Social distancing is one of the recommended actions for people to take in order to slow the spread of coronavirus, forcing people to telecommute for work and spend more time at home. That means more and more people will be using their internet for anything from emailing and video conferencing to binge watching shows on a streaming service.

However, since not everyone at home has internet service, several internet providers and wireless companies have announced measures to offer free WiFi during the ongoing outbreak.

Comcast will be offering free service at its Xfinity hotspots for 60 days. The access points are mostly in public locations but some are in small businesses.

AT&T is also offering 60 days of free public service.

Spectrum is offering free public access at its hotspots and will not cut service to residential or small business customers who are unable to pay their bill because of coronavirus disruptions. Spectrum is also offering free broadband to households with students.

Verizon announced it would not charge late fees or disconnect accounts for an indefinite amount of time.

T-Mobile, Sprint, AT&T and Comcast are all lifting their unlimited data caps for cell phone subscribers for at least 60 days,


https://www.nydailynews.com/coronaviru ... fcic5odfizmnri-story.html

Posted on: 3/15 21:56
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Re: Coronavirus is now in Hudson County
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Steven Fulop
@StevenFulop

I am sharing we have a 3rd positive #CoronaVirus case today. Male 80yo, JC Heights Resident. He has been in isolation. We are following up proactively w/all contacts, although of note for residents he has had limited interaction w/JC residents overall.

12:04 PM · Mar 15, 2020

https://twitter.com/StevenFulop

Posted on: 3/15 16:13
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Trapped in Wuhan: How an N.J. woman made it home from the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic
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Trapped in Wuhan: How an N.J. woman made it home from the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic

Updated 6:49 AM; Today 6:30 AM

By Spencer Kent | NJ Advance Media for NJ.com
The streets of Wuhan were a ghost town.

A pall had fallen over the city, a tense silence that felt apocalyptic.

Ningxi Xu jogged through her hometown in late January, sweating out the angst and boredom as she remained locked down in a metropolis under quarantine. The city of 11 million in central China typically bustles like midtown Manhattan.

But it was empty.

There were no cars. No people. All the shops and restaurants were closed.

Starving animals prowled the streets, desperately following the few residents who dared to leave their homes.

Coronavirus was no longer a whispered rumor. It had trapped millions of people in place as public transportation was shut down, flights were halted, and soon, roads would be closed and barricaded.

"It was eerie because the streets were almost completely empty,” said Xu, a Jersey City resident. “We live on a usually pretty busy street, and it was just weird to see.”

Xu, 30, had traveled to China in mid-January to visit her family and celebrate the Lunar New Year.

Three days after she arrived in Wuhan — the epicenter of a mysterious outbreak turned global pandemic — the Chinese government ordered it locked down. Xu would be trapped in a city under siege by the disease now known as COVID-19, caused by a novel coronavirus that had only just been identified by health experts.

No one could have predicted what would emerge — the scale of the outbreak, the thousands of infections and deaths and the global spread that would reach every continent but Antarctica. That spread would cause governments to scramble, stock markets to plummet and New Jersey and the United States to declare a state of emergency.

Xu had no idea what she had encountered. Not fully. Not yet.

It was only after discovering that the quarantine would last far longer than mere days or even weeks that panic set in.

“I could see that, at some point, she got a little bit upset …" said Szymon Borak, Xu’s boyfriend and a banking risk manager. “‘OK.’ I just simply said, ‘OK.’ ... I knew that she was under tremendous pressure.”

Xu would spend three weeks locked down in Wuhan. Jump on a last-chance flight out of China organized by the U.S. State Department, secured with the help of U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez. Endure a 16-hour flight across the Pacific surrounded by fellow Americans suspected of having COVID-19 and isolated in plastic. Then spend another 14 days in quarantine on a military base in San Diego hoping she did not have the virus. And finally, she would make the cross-country trip home to New Jersey, where she returned Feb. 19 somehow free of COVID-19.

Since then, the Garden State has recorded at least 69 cases of COVID-19 and witnessed two deaths. Overall, the world has recorded more than 142,000 infections and nearly 5,400 fatalities, with 2,600 cases and 56 deaths occurring in the United States.

The lessons of Wuhan may just apply here in the U.S. if the outbreak continues to escalate. The coronavirus is still spreading, upending daily life for nearly every American. There is no vaccine or treatment. COVID-19 has a fatality rate of 3.4%, far higher than the 0.1% of sufferers who die of the flu, according to U.S. health officials.

Xu, a data engineer for an asset management firm, had little inkling what she was facing that first night in Wuhan. She would learn quickly.

“Three days later, we went into the lockdown,” she said.

Vague warnings

The first warning came Jan. 19, during a layover in Tokyo.

A mysterious, new virus had emerged in Wuhan, Xu’s parents told her, and people were getting scared.

They even mentioned she might want to turn back and fly home to the United States.

"Looking back now, I think I was just really naive,” she said. “I just completely disregarded the severity.”

Xu hadn't seen the initial reports circulating at the time. Borak remembered a few vague headlines, but they didn't sound overly concerning. And Xu was almost there, making her annual trip home for the holiday as she had for the past 12 years.

Then came another warning.

Xu met a stranger, a middle-aged woman from Rhode Island, on the flight from Tokyo to China. The woman told Xu about the still-unnamed virus. And she told her to be careful once they landed.

When they did touch down in Wuhan, Xu noticed surgical masks were everywhere.

People wore them inside the airport. Her father even wore one when he picked her up. He didn’t take it off until they got to her parents’ condo.

"I even laughed at him and said, 'Oh, why are you wearing a mask? Come on. It's silly,'" said Xu, who requested that her parents not be identified.

Her dad told her not to handle money, to watch what she touched and had her to drink a special Chinese herbal cocktail -- a sort of bitter tea -- every day.

Still, "it didn't sound too serious,” said Xu, who caught up with her aunts, uncles and cousins, shopped and went out to eat.

But the coronavirus was spreading like wildfire in Wuhan and throughout Hubei province, aided by a government concealing information from the public.

News was limited after Chinese officials detained, and in some cases, arrested medical workers and journalists who warned of the outbreak, according to reports.

Rumors of mass infection and death had begun to circulate among residents, filling the void. However, Xu had not seen any sick people or bodies.

About 3 a.m. on the third day of her visit, everything changed.

Xu lay in bed in her parents' guest room, wide awake thanks to jet lag, when the order to quarantine the city came down.

"I was feeling a little disoriented and just couldn't believe what I was seeing,” Xu said. “And it was in the middle of the night, so when my dad woke up a few hours later, I told him and he was like, 'Oh, wow.'

"He couldn't believe it."

A friend in the U.S. told her to get out immediately, suggesting she have her parents take her to Shanghai to get a flight while the roads were still open.

"Unfortunately, we didn't take any action," Xu said. “We optimistically thought it would be over in maybe a week or two.”

The outbreak and the lockdown persist to this day.

One chance to leave

Panic set in when an email from All Nippon Airways said all flights were canceled until March.

"It was pretty desperate because I didn't think ... there will be another way out," Xu said. "So I think it was just like a sense of despair. I didn't know what to do."

She was trapped.

Public transportation had shut down. The roads leading out of the area were closed. People could still leave their homes, go shopping and run errands. But that would soon change, as the Chinese government eventually restricted Wuhan residents' movements.

Xu was biding her time, reading the news and searching for a way out of China.

“This is not a usual panic,” said Borak, describing Xu grow increasingly anxious.

She ran to work off the nervous energy. In her workout clothes and wearing earbuds, she jogged through a city that normally had clogged sidewalks, jammed roads and stores and restaurants filled with people.

But now it was empty.

Xu jogged past a lake, where a group of cats searched for food.

“Street animals were now starving since they couldn't get food from restaurants,” she said.

She added, "My mom saw a dog one day that followed her for a while, probably looking for food. It was terrible."

A call to the U.S. Embassy amounted to nothing. When it didn't respond, real fear set in. Xu felt alone.

All the while, people in Wuhan continued to die. Hubei province, which includes Wuhan, has recorded the large majority of mainland China’s 80,800 cases and 3,200 deaths.

No one in Xu’s family has been infected. But everyone knew someone impacted — "two-degrees of separation," as Xu put it.

She only grew more anxious when she learned the U.S. Consulate in Wuhan was being evacuated.

"She was under tremendous pressure," said Borak, feeling helpless from 7,000 miles away.

Finally, he contacted Menendez's office out of desperation and explained the situation.

"I think they contacted the State Department for me,” Xu said. “I'm not sure if I would have been able to get on that flight (out) if they hadn't reached out for me.”

Xu received word from the U.S. Embassy on Feb. 2 that she had secured a flight. In a statement through a spokesman, Menendez said he was stunned when he realized the abandonment that Xu — and several other New Jersey residents — faced.

“She had tried several times to reach officials at the American embassy, and was understandably distressed when no one responded,” Menendez said.

“There is no excuse for leaving American citizens in need in the lurch, but that’s what was happening,” he said.

The only information Xu was given was a time to be at the airport.

To get there, they would have to pass through barricades and police checkpoints. The roads were otherwise deserted.

She arrived at the airport in Wuhan at 4:45 p.m., when she found she was part of a group of about 200 passengers.

It was "pretty disorganized, and we didn't know where (we) were going, even when we were at the airport," Xu said.

She didn’t board until 8 a.m. the following morning.

The flight

The medical workers wore respirators.

Every passenger on the 16-hour flight from Wuhan wore a surgical mask.

A baby screamed somewhere. Then someone coughed, and the cargo plane went silent.

“I was scared at the airport before we finally took off ... and on the flight since it was a confined area,” Xu said.

They were headed to a military base in San Diego, where she and the other evacuees would be placed under quarantine for 14 days.

There were almost no windows in the plane. There were just rows of seats bolted to the metal floor inside a massive fuselage.

Thick, clear plastic hung from the ceiling. More of it was wrapped around the ladder leading to the upper deck.

Before takeoff, everyone waited to be checked in and examined by health officials who wore white coverall gowns, surgical masks, eye shields and blue surgical gloves that were secured with duct tape around their wrists.

Xu took her seat as her fellow evacuees slowly filed by.

She tried her best to sleep. But then officials on the plane called her number, something every passenger had been assigned on a wristband handed out before they took off.

Her temperature had been slightly elevated when she boarded, and they needed to monitor her.

“They said it was on the higher end, but still within normal range, and they just wanted to make sure," Xu said.

She had made it this far, to the plane and on her way out of China. Against the odds, she was not infected.

But was anyone else on the plane infected?

She sat in fear as coughs broke the silence.

Welcome to San Diego

Fences surrounded the compound, rising about five feet high.

The evacuees were welcomed to San Diego by a military band, and then they were shown to their quarters.

But their arrival did not feel like a homecoming, not with two weeks of quarantine ahead of them.

"They put up fences and tents, like medical tents, outside just in case you felt sick in the middle of the night," Xu said.

There wasn't much socializing. Everyone largely kept to themselves.

The only real interactions came in the dining area, where only sparse meals — a single box with chicken or pork chops and some vegetables — were provided.

The group complained about the food. It soon improved in quality and quantity.

Xu spent the idle hours reading, keeping up with the news in Wuhan, checking on her parents and journaling on her phone. She wrote about her experiences and the whirlwind she had just experienced.

"I was just counting down the days," said Xu, who is not yet ready to share her journal entries.

She’s still in disbelief. And she’s never felt more compassion for people living under authoritarian rule.

Despite having studied international affairs at George Washington University, she said, “I never really felt it on a visceral level.”

"I finally feel like I understand that," Xu said.

Approaching her final day in quarantine — after the medical exams and temperature checks, the boxed meals and the lonely sleeping quarters — she was excited to get out of there.

Xu just wanted to return home and see Borak and her two cats — Pumpkin and Pecan.

She told her boyfriend she’d be arriving at Newark airport around midnight on Feb. 19, but he didn’t need to pick her up. She planned to take an Uber home.

But there he was. Xu caught a glimpse of Borak standing in the terminal, waiting for her as she lugged her bag.

They embraced and kissed, holding each other.

She was finally home.

Nearly two months later, life is beginning to return to normal, even as the pandemic escalates in New Jersey, the United States and throughout the globe.

In retrospect, Xu said the warning signs were glaring. She wonders how she missed them — the woman on the plane, the masks all around, her parents’ hesitant voices wondering if she should turn around.

But there were no official warnings. The Chinese government had said little to nothing. Until lockdown, there was no hint as to the seriousness of the situation. There weren't even those now-ubiquitous reminders in the U.S. to wash your hands.

All the people of Wuhan had were rumors and innuendo, the grapevine of family and friends and neighbors sharing what little information existed.

Xu still worries about them, even as her parents remain healthy in the quarantined city.

And she still wonders about the woman from Rhode Island who had given her that initial warning.

Xu doesn't know if she escaped. She doesn't know if she's OK.

“I hope she got out,” Xu said.


https://www.nj.com/coronavirus/2020/03 ... coronavirus-pandemic.html

Posted on: 3/15 14:17
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Re: Coronavirus is now in Hudson County
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City of Jersey City
@JerseyCity

Important: We have a 2nd confirmed case in #JerseyCity - 61yo female living in downtown. We have already started outreach to all of her contacts and interactions, and we will do that proactively.

1:45 PM · Mar 14, 2020·

https://twitter.com/JerseyCity

Posted on: 3/14 17:57
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Re: Coronavirus is now in Hudson County
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I went to my dentist in Hoboken yesterday, and there were a lot of cancellations. Probably the same people who is not afraid to crowd into Trader Joe's and buy everything that everybody touched.

------------------------------

Hoboken confirms first known case of coronavirus

Updated Mar 13, 2020; Posted Mar 13, 2020

By Teri West | The Jersey Journal

A man in his 40s is Hoboken’s first known coronavirus patient, Mayor Ravi Bhalla announced Friday.

The individual is in isolation at home and is experiencing mild symptoms, Bhalla said.

Hoboken’s health department is notifying people who have been in contact with the patient so that they can self-quarantine, he added. Residents are encouraged to call the health department at 201-420-2000 ext. 5211 if they believe they have been exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19.

“To be clear, we unfortunately anticipate the likelihood of additional positive COVID-19 cases to be confirmed in the days and weeks ahead, which have not yet been discovered,” Bhalla said. “However, we are doing everything possible to limit the spread of COVID-19 through proactive measures and regulations. I greatly appreciate the community’s cooperation during this challenging time.”

The Hoboken case is Hudson County’s third reported case of the coronavirus. Jersey City announced its first presumptive positive case Friday morning, a 41-year-old woman who lives Downtown. The county’s first patient was a 32-year-old resident of West New York.

https://www.nj.com/hudson/2020/03/hobo ... -case-of-coronavirus.html

Posted on: 3/14 13:08
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Re: Grove Pointe Starbucks
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According to this, the Health Department shut them down.

http://jclist.com/modules/newbb/viewtopic.php?post_id=438349

https://www.reddit.com/r/jerseycity/co ... _shut_down_by_the_health/


You can searching JCList using Google: "site:jclist.com starbucks".

Posted on: 1/23 12:51
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NJ family says they received used diapers in nightmare Amazon delivery
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NJ family says they received used diapers in nightmare Amazon delivery

Posted: 7:01 PM, Jan 10, 2020 Updated: 7:01 PM, Jan 10, 2020
By: Andrew Ramos


JERSEY CITY, N.J. — It’s a mystery that has rattled Nassly Sales and her family.

The Jersey City mom had ordered two boxes of diapers from Amazon as she does every month for her two daughters, purchasing the items from the site’s “Amazon Warehouse” section, where open-box and returned items are sold at a discounted rate.

When the package arrived this week, she said nothing could’ve prepared her for what she says she found inside.

“I picked up the diapers and it was a little bit heavy, I was half asleep the lights were off,” she explained. “At that point, I turn on the light and that’s when I noticed these diapers are neatly-folded and they are soiled.

The shocking discovery prompted the mom to immediately disinfect her nursery, even wiping down her 19-month-old daughter with rubbing alcohol.

The child, a micro preemie, was born 26 weeks premature, weighing a little over a pound, making her immune system compromised. According to Sales, the baby was just inches away from what she believed was a health hazard.

Speaking to an Amazon customer service representative later that evening didn’t exactly put the family at ease.

“They were like ‘OK sorry for your inconvenience, we will give you a refund. You’re more than welcome to keep the stuff, you don’t need to return it,’” Sid Mukherje, the children’s father, told PIX11.

“And my thought was "Wow, you are not understanding what I’m saying.”

While the family has not officially sent the substance to be tested, they say it bears a strong resemblance and odor to fecal material.

What they want now is a better explanation from Amazon about the mishap.

According to their website, the company inspects and certifies all open-box products before re-selling them, something Sales says obviously did not happen.

In a statement to PIX11, an Amazon spokesperson said "We are investigating the situation and in contact with the customer to make it right."


https://www.pix11.com/news/local-news/ ... nightmare-amazon-delivery

Posted on: 1/11 1:08
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Jersey City Shooting: Immigrant With ‘Big Dreams’ Was Among Victims
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Jersey City Shooting: Immigrant With ‘Big Dreams’ Was Among Victims

He was a beloved worker at the market who had emigrated to New Jersey with his family from Ecuador.

By Andrea Salcedo
Dec. 12, 2019
Updated 7:08 p.m. ET

Douglas Miguel Rodriguez did not always make sandwiches and stock shelves at a kosher supermarket in Jersey City.

Thousands of miles away, in Guayaquil, Ecuador, his hometown, Mr. Rodriguez was a middle-class family man who worked as a financial manager for an insurance company, his brother, William Rodriguez Barzola, said.

But he lost his job when the company went under and Mr. Rodriguez, struggling financially, moved to New Jersey with his wife and daughter.

His lack of English proved a barrier to a white-collar job in his adopted home, his brother said, so he had to settle for whatever he could get to pay his bills.

That is why he was working inside the JC Kosher Market on Tuesday afternoon when two assailants armed with high-powered weapons stormed the store. Mr. Rodriguez, 49, was killed along with Leah Mindel Ferencz, who owned the market and Moshe Deutsch, a rabbinical student from Brooklyn.

In the days since the rampage, much of the focus has been on Jersey City’s small but growing Hasidic community, after investigators said that the kosher market had been intentionally targeted and that one of the assailants had made anti-Semitic comments online.

But Jersey City is one of the most diverse communities in New Jersey, with about 40 percent of the city’s population born outside the United States, according to the census. Many neighborhoods in the city have become attractive enclaves for immigrant workers, like Mr. Rodriguez.

“It’s a city of Chinese grocers and Indian shopkeepers and recent college graduates, all striving for a better life in the shadow of the Statue of Liberty,” New Jersey’s Attorney General, Gubrir S. Grewal, said at a news conference on Wednesday.

But Mr. Rodriguez was not just a regular worker at the store, Mr. Rodriguez Barzola said. He was friends with the owners of the store, Moishe Duvid Ferencz and his wife Mrs. Ferencz, as well as many of the clientele.

“Customers would know him as the man with the nice smile,” said Mr. Rodriguez Barzola in a telephone interview from Ecuador. “He would always wear a smile of love and care.”

For Mark Schwartz, a regular customer who would often duck into the market twice a day, Mr. Rodriguez was the man who would prepare his lunch, remember his favorite snacks or help him find an item when he was having trouble.

“This guy, he knew everybody by their name,” Mr. Schwartz said. “He was a wonderful guy.”

Mr. Rodriguez would talk about his personal life and share pictures of his wife, Martha, and their 11-year-old daughter whenever Mr. Schwartz would stop in.

Mr. Rodriguez told him he had waited some 10 years to become a father, which he said was one of his greatest accomplishments, Mr. Schwartz said. They named their daughter Amy Milagros, miracle in Spanish, because after years of trying to conceive, they finally had a child, Mr. Rodriguez Barzola said.

“The relationship with Martha and Amy was extraordinary,” Mr. Rodriguez Barzola said. “They were a family full of love and affection.”

His brother said Mr. Rodriguez was living a comfortable life in Ecuador before his company, Seguros Bolivar, went bankrupt in 2014 and laid him off.

After two years of trying to find a similar-paying job, Mr. Rodriguez, who friends and family often called “Miguelito,” left his parents and four siblings for Harrison, N.J., along with his wife and daughter.

“He had the hope of getting an office job or a bank job but language barriers made it difficult for him to work in these areas,” Mr. Rodriguez Barzola said.

Mr. Rodriguez worked at another kosher market first, before his boss recommended him to Mr. Ferencz, who offered him a job as a helper in his kosher market, Mr. Rodriguez Barzola said.

Mr. Rodriguez, who worked six days a week except Saturdays, would rarely complain, Mr. Schwartz said. He did lament about not being able to make it to Sunday service at Nueva Vida Church in Newark.

But, Mr. Schwartz said, work was the priority.

“He was so happy to be here,’’ he said. “He had big dreams.”

Now, with the family’s breadwinner gone, Mr. Rodriguez’s relatives are turning to strangers to cobble together enough money to send his body back to Ecuador to be buried.

https://www.gofundme.com/f/douglas-rod ... victim-of-the-jc-shooting

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/12/nyr ... jersey-city-shooting.html

Posted on: 12/13 1:15
Top


Gofundme - Douglas Rodriguez Victim of the JC shooting
#13
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Here is the Gofundme for Douglas Rodriguez, the 3rd victim.

"This page is created to help the family of my uncle, victim of the Jersey City shooting, Douglas Rodriguez. Douglas Rodriguez came to this country for better life with his wife and daughter. He was a devoted husband, friend, and father, He was a God-loving, honest and hard-working person was who always available to help others. He had been working at the store for about a year before this devastating and unexpected loss. We would appreciate any help from the community to help his family cover funeral expenses. He was very much the provider in his family, so anything you can give will help his wife and daughter greatly. Thank you and God bless.

Esta pagina es creada para ayudar a mi familia, mi tio es una victima del Jersey City Shooting(Douglas Rodriguez)
Ecuatoriano que vino a trabajas a este pais por mejor calidad de vida con su esposa e hija, el era un buen esposo, amigo que amaba a su familia, trabajador y muy buena persona, siempre disponible para ayudar a los demas que creia en Dios.
El estubo trabajando en la tienda por alrededor de un ano, siempre a tiempo para hacer su trabajo, esta es una perdida inesperada. queremos ayuda de la comunidad y nuestros conpatriotas. para ayudar a la esposa e hija y los gastos funerales el era el proveedor de su familia.
Gracias por todo Dios los bendiga."

https://www.gofundme.com/f/douglas-rod ... victim-of-the-jc-shooting

Posted on: 12/12 13:13
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HBO funnyman John Oliver takes shot at Hoboken, SantaCon
#14
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HBO funnyman John Oliver takes shot at Hoboken, SantaCon

Updated 3:35 PM;Today 2:12 PM
By Ron Zeitlinger | The Jersey Journal

Comedian John Oliver is no fan of SantaCon. And apparently he doesn’t think much of Hoboken, either.

Put the two together and you get a 6-minute “Last Week Tonight With John Oliver” web exclusive.

While shredding SantaCon events all over the country, Oliver pointed out that 14 people were arrested at SantaCon 2018 in Hoboken.

“Just think about that — 'Arrested doing SantaCon in Hoboken New Jersey.’ That might be literally the saddest sentence in existence."

Read more here:
https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/12/hbo- ... -at-hoboken-santacon.html

Video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_TfCgeYHiBE

Posted on: 12/10 0:48
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Pick up and drop off UPS® packages at CVS
#15
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Home away from home


1,000s of CVS stores are now UPS ACCESS POINT® locations.

Come in when you can.

We know you’re juggling a lot.

Our convenient locations and store hours give you extra flexibility.
You can get your CVS shopping done while you're in.
We keep your prescriptions safe. And we’ll keep your packages safe too.

How UPS pickup works.

Track your package to make sure it’s arrived at the store.

We'll hold your package up to 7 days so you can visit when it's convenient.
Request your package and show a valid, government-issued ID.
Redirecting your packages to CVS is easy.

How UPS drop-off works.

We accept pre-labeled, prepaid packages for 5- to 7-day ground and air delivery.

Seal and attach a prepaid label to your package at home.
Find a CVS location that accepts UPS packages.
Leave your package with a CVS associate.
UPS will pick up packages within 24 hours.* Track delivery through UPS.


Locations:
30 MALL DRIVE W.
JERSEY CITY, NJ 07302

811 CLINTON STREET
HOBOKEN, NJ 07030

https://www.cvs.com/content/ups

Posted on: 12/9 1:30
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Tis the porch pirate season, but Hudson County communities are fighting back
#16
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'Tis the ‘porch pirate’ season, but Hudson County communities are fighting back

Posted Dec 01, 2019

By Steven Rodas | The Jersey Journal

HOBOKEN — A utility truck pulled up to a busy Hoboken thoroughfare, turned on the hazards and, while the driver stayed put, another man began lobbing packages he’d stolen from people’s porches into the back of the truck.

“It was within 30 to 60 seconds,” Hoboken Detective William Collins said at police headquarters last week. “People look out their windows and think, ‘Oh, it’s just someone working. Nothing wrong here.’ In that case, we were lucky enough to get the plate and find the driver — who later confessed.”

Collins said most package thefts ordinarily don’t happen that way. The usual MO of package thieves, sometimes referred to as “porch pirates,” is on foot, which presents an added challenge to the authorities. Now that the holiday season is underway — considered peak time for such thefts — police departments throughout Hudson County are gearing up to deter people from swiping packages from porches and foyers, and catch the ones that do.

This year, Jersey City, Hoboken, and Kearny have partnered with Amazon as part of an initiative to catch would-be burglars. As part of the program, the city sets up fake Amazon boxes — equipped with GPS units and surveillance cameras — outside of houses and apartment buildings that have experienced multiple thefts.

“It’s a crime of opportunity. When someone’s walking down the street with a package under their arm, or riding a bike, neither police officers nor civilians know that what they’re holding are proceeds of a theft,” Hoboken Police Chief Ken Ferrante told The Jersey Journal. “We have over 28,000 addresses in Hoboken alone, is a combination of residential and business. That’s 220 intersections. Even if we put ‘a watch’ at all of the intersections, we would still have package thefts inside our multi-dwelling buildings. So, it’s very, very tough.”

According to the U.S. Department of Commerce, retail e-commerce sales saw a 13.3 percent surge from the second quarter of 2018 to the second quarter of 2019. Per global data platform, Statista, as generations skew younger more and more shoppers prefer to stay at home and whittle away their shopping lists one click at a time.

Playing defense

This holiday season Kearny, Jersey City, and Hoboken are taking part in the Amazon initiative.

“We were first on the East Coast to implement this type of package theft sting (in 2018), and we’re proud to serve as a model for other areas now implementing similar strategies to combat the issue,” Jersey City spokeswoman Kimberly Wallace-Scalcione said. “The goal of the program is not just to catch the thieves, but more to deter these crimes altogether.”

The boxes are provided free of charge from Amazon.

Wallace-Scalcione estimated that between 400 and 500 package thefts took place in Jersey City in 2018, per information provided by Amazon.

“Eight minutes after we dropped the first bait package (last year), it was picked up,” she said.

In addition to decoys, the city is providing Ring doorbells to homeowners that put in a request or are likely to be targeted.

California-based company Ring connects its video doorbell to the resident’s home Wi-Fi network and sends real-time notifications to their mobile device when someone arrives at their door.

A 2018 pilot program — which included the donation of over 500 Ring doorbells to two Newark neighborhoods — saw burglaries reduced by more than 50 percent from April through July in comparison with the same span of time in 2017, according to a company announcement.

Wallace-Scalcione added that although some areas get hit more than others, no one is immune to these thefts. Even Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop fell victim to a package thief prior to his wife’s baby shower in December 2018.

Hoboken had 192 package thefts reported in 2018 and 107 so far in 2019.

“We have designated areas where we want to concentrate — whether it be the steps of a home or inside of a building where we’ll have surveillance set up,” said Collins. “The owners of the buildings are aware of it.”

Kearny Sgt. Michael Gonzalez said when heard about Jersey City’s success with the anti-theft program, preparations began in his city as well.

“We usually have a patrol monitoring these types of incidents, but we’re going to give this program a try,” said Gonzalez. “I wouldn’t say it’s a huge issue here, but like any other town you see a spike during the holidays. I know its cliché, but I think we should still adhere to the ‘see something, say something’ rule. If you see someone lurking around, report it and we’ll get a car to the area.”

Officials in North Bergen and Union City said they are also providing residents with Ring doorbell systems.

"Since Jan. 1, we have only had 19 incidents of packages stolen, which is significantly low for an urban community,” said North Bergen Police Chief Robert Dowd, who noted that 15 of those ended in arrests. “However, we always want to improve these numbers.”

North Bergen had a total of 45 package thefts in 2018.

In Union City, spokesperson Erin Knoedler noted that Mayor Brian Stack hosts over a hundred community meetings throughout the year wherein they advise residents to reports any suspicious activity.

“We have a multi-pronged approach,” said Knoedler. “We believe the main thing is to educate the public.”

What you can do

Bayonne police Lt. Eric Amato has some suggestions for residents as well.

“People should try to schedule the delivery for when they’ll be home, if possible, or indicate if there is someplace the delivery can be made where it is not easily visible, possibly in a shed or yard,” said Amato, who noted that Bayonne had 94 package thefts in 2018 and slightly more than 50 this year. “Amazon has pick-up locations and also offer a hub locker, where once the item is delivered an e-mail is sent with a code so the customer can retrieve it.”

In West New York, which had 14 package thefts in December 2018 alone, Director Mark Flores agreed that arranging to have packages delivered where the customer knows a person will be can make a big difference.

Flores noted that residents could arrange to have the package left with a neighbor. “Our patrol units and walking officers will [also] be extra vigilant in monitoring suspicious activity,” he added.

Police departments also suggest that residents require a signature when they make an order online and additionally, consider having packages delivered to their workplace.

A non-violent crime

Considering package thefts fall under the non-violent crime category, Ferrante said “porch pirates” can strike with alarming frequency, even after they are caught.

“We have law enforcement apprehending these individuals but then (because of the type of crime) they’re on the block the following day,” Ferrante said, who noted that when an address is victimized that location is 50 percent more likely to be re-burglarized the following day. “Victims don’t always have the patience we do."

Ferrante pointed to an arrest his department made in January of 33-year-old David Diaz.

Diaz, a serial package thief, was charged in January with stealing packages from residential buildings on four occasions in one month, according to court records. Two of the thefts were three days apart.

“One last big thing we try to educate people on has to do with condo buildings,” said Collins. “When residents pull out of garages, especially in the morning when they’re leaving for work, they’re a block or two away before the door starts coming back down.

"It doesn’t come down for at least a minute or two, which can then present an opportunity.”


https://www.nj.com/hudson/2019/12/tis- ... es-are-fighting-back.html

Posted on: 12/2 5:17
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Re: End of AirBnB in Jersey City?
#17
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Home away from home


Jersey City voters pass restrictions on Airbnb, short-term rentals

By DAVID PORTER
Updated 39 minutes ago

JERSEY CITY, New Jersey -- Voters in a New Jersey city that's just a few minutes by train from the tourist sights of Manhattan approved restrictions Tuesday on Airbnb and other short-term rental companies.

The vote was an endorsement of restrictions that were initially passed by Jersey City lawmakers in June, but were put on hold after short-term rental advocates gathered enough signatures to force a referendum.

Jersey City, a city of around 271,000 people just across the Hudson River from lower Manhattan, has become increasingly popular with tourists seeking an alternative to pricey New York City lodging. Since officials approved short-term rentals there about four years ago, the number of homes being listed nightly on sites like Airbnb has increased tenfold.

That led to complaints about absentee owners turning apartment buildings into de facto hotels and having a negative effect on affordable housing.

When city officials acted to reign in the Airbnb bonanza, short-term renters pushed back, saying putting their homes up on the site helped them defray high housing costs by bringing in paying guests.

The regulations limit how often landlords can rent properties if they don't live on site. They also forbid short-term rentals in buildings with more than four units if the owner isn't present and prohibit renters from serving as hosts.

The referendum was the latest chapter in a battle that has played out in numerous American cities, including San Francisco, where Airbnb is based.

It generated a flurry of television ads in the New York market with both sides accusing each other of spreading misinformation about the size of the market and the potential effect of the restrictions.

Airbnb and local advocates argued that the restrictions would have the effect of eliminating 90% of the city's properties from the market and would disproportionately affect renters, most of whom are minorities.


https://abc7ny.com/politics/jersey-cit ... ort-term-rentals/5672976/

Posted on: 2019/11/6 4:06
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Re: Selling a Haunted House? Here’s What You Need to Know
#18
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Home away from home


Yes.

Posted on: 2019/11/4 21:01
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Re: PATH Train: New fares for SmartLink Multi-Trip & Unlimited Passes effective 11/1/19
#19
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Home away from home


I had a problem too. I can only get 2 x 40 trips.

Posted on: 2019/11/4 16:07
Top


Re: PATH Train: New fares for SmartLink Multi-Trip & Unlimited Passes effective 11/1/19
#20
Home away from home
Home away from home


What is the maximum number of trips I can add to SmartLink?

SmartLink holds a maximum of six products, three different types of product with no more than two of any product. As such, SmartLink can hold up to 140 trips: two 40-trip products, two 20-trip products, and two 10-trip products.

https://www.pathsmartlinkcard.com/faq.html

Posted on: 2019/10/31 3:01
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Re: Selling a Haunted House? Here’s What You Need to Know
#21
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Home away from home


I heard stories from security guards that people saw ghosts in a certain condo converted from a hospital.

Posted on: 2019/10/30 23:31
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Selling a Haunted House? Here’s What You Need to Know
#22
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Home away from home


Selling a Haunted House? Here’s What You Need to Know

Only four states deal with paranormal activity in their real estate disclosure laws: New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Minnesota

Published Oct 29, 2019 at 1:25 PM

Your dream home may be haunted, and in most states, sellers don't have to say boo about it.

Ahead of Halloween, Zillow scared up a state-by-state analysis and found only four deal with paranormal activity in their real estate disclosure laws: New York, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Minnesota.

In New York state, courts will rescind a home sale if the seller creates and perpetuates a reputation that the house is haunted and then takes unfair advantage of a buyer's ignorance of the home's ghostly reputation. For example, if you invite reality television ghost hunters to your home, then later sell your poltergeist palace to an unwitting buyer who prefers sitcoms, a court could make that sale vanish.

In New Jersey, a seller must truthfully tell a buyer if their property comes with phantom roommates - only if asked.

Many states have statutes that say property facts that could cause "stigma" or "psychological impact" need not be disclosed. Massachusetts and Minnesota deliberately mention paranormal or supernatural activity as a "psychologically affected" attribute that does not need to be disclosed.

Some real estate agents say haunted properties present other challenges that can scare off buyers.

"I worked with a seller who claimed their house was haunted by a ghost who lived in the basement," says Jennifer Stauter Kornstedt, an agent in Wisconsin. "When I arrived for the open house, I heard banging noises coming from the basement. I went to investigate but could not find the source of the noise. Then the phone rang three times with only static on the other end."

Stauter Kornstedt says she and the seller agreed to disclose the creepy companion to any potential buyer even though they didn't have to under to Wisconsin law. Ultimately, the homeowners decided to stay in their house, but Stauter Kornstedt says she's been spooked ever since.

Nine states have laws around the disclosure of a death on the property. In California, sellers must disclose a death on the property within 3 years. In Alaska, a death within one year must be disclosed. In South Dakota, sellers must disclose a homicide on the property.

In Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, New Hampshire, New Jersey and South Carolina, sellers must disclose a death on the property only if asked.

So, if you own a home in Texas that was the scene of a chainsaw massacre in 1974, you can keep that your own little secret.

https://www.nbcnewyork.com/news/local/ ... y-New-York-564046881.html

Posted on: 2019/10/30 21:04
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Re: PATH Train: New fares for SmartLink Multi-Trip & Unlimited Passes effective 11/1/19
#23
Home away from home
Home away from home


I use the SmartLink card. It is cheaper than using the Metrocard.

Posted on: 2019/10/30 18:59
Top


PATH Train: New fares for SmartLink Multi-Trip & Unlimited Passes effective 11/1/19
#24
Home away from home
Home away from home


Fill up your card before Friday.

New fares for SmartLink Multi-Trip & Unlimited Passes effective 11/1/19:

10-Trip: $25,
20-Trip: $50,
40Trip: $100.
1-Day Unlimited: $10,
7-Day Unlimited: $34.50,
30-Day Unlimited: $106.
Senior SmartLink Card fare is $1.25.
One-way PATH fare remains $2.75.

https://www.panynj.gov/path/fares.html

Posted on: 2019/10/30 16:07
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Re: End of AirBnB in Jersey City?
#25
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Home away from home


Jersey City fights Airbnb war fueled by NYC crackdown

By Julia Marsh October 29, 2019 | 7:22pm

Mayor Bill de Blasio’s Airbnb crackdown in the Big Apple has pushed the battle over short-term rentals across the Hudson River to Jersey City, where voters will decide Nov. 5 whether to regulate them in their neighborhoods.

“I think Jersey City is kind of a proxy for what’s going on in the New York market,” said Sue Altman, the state’s director for the Working Families Party, referring to the flourishing of Airbnb in the New Jersey commuter enclave since de Blasio’s crackdown on it in the five boroughs.

But “we’re not just going to take things that are regulated out of New York City and take them with open arms — that’s not what New Jersey is here for,” she said.

In New York City, most short-term rentals are illegal unless the permanent tenant is also living in the apartment. De Blasio has poured $6 million into enforcement of illegal listings during his tenure.

Consequently, there are now 3,000 Airbnb rentals in Jersey City, many of which are marketed to tourists visiting the Big Apple and controlled by commercial operators with multiple listings instead of individual property owners, according to the independent data website Inside Airbnb.

An Airbnb spokeswoman refuted those figures but could not provide alternative information.

The measure on the Jersey City ballot next month will allow residents to vote on regulations that would impose an annual 60-day rental limit for property owners who don’t live on site, require a $500,000 home-insurance policy of them and implement city code inspections every three years.

Liz DeBold Fusco, an Airbnb spokeswoman, said the restrictions would amount to a ban on Airbnb, putting thousands of residents who rent their homes through the system in “serious financial jeopardy.”

She said the ban was “crafted at the behest of the hotel industry’s special interests.”

Indeed the politically powerful Hotel Trades Council, a union representing hotel workers who see Airbnb as a direct competitor, plans to spent $1.15 million to ensure the ballot measure passes.

But Airbnb has spent another $4.2 million opposing the referendum.

Staci Berger, president of the nonprofit Housing and Community Development Network of New Jersey, said the regulations are necessary to protect affordable rents in Jersey City, since such short-term rentals eat up the overall housing market.

“We support a ‘yes’ vote on the sensible ballot question because we want to keep apartments affordable for renters while protecting residents’ health and safety and preserving the ability of homeowners to rent their homes if they choose,” Berger said.

https://nypost.com/2019/10/29/jersey-c ... -fueled-by-nyc-crackdown/

Posted on: 2019/10/30 1:53
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Join the PATH Riders
#26
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Join the PATH Riders' Council!

The application deadline has been extended to 11/1/2019. If you have ideas for ways PATH can improve service, this is your opportunity to work directly with leadership and make your voice heard.

http://www.panynj.gov/path/prc.html

Posted on: 2019/10/8 16:11
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Jersey City Asks Residents For Help Getting Rid Of Spotted Lanternflies
#27
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Jersey City Asks Residents For Help Getting Rid Of Spotted Lanternflies


October 8, 2019 at 9:55 am

JERSEY CITY (CBSNewYork) – Residents of Jersey City are being asked to help get rid of a plant and tree-killing insect invading Jersey City.

Several residents have reported seeing Spotted Lanternflies.

The insect is native to Asia and was first spotted in the U.S. in Pennsylvania.

The New Jersey Department of Agriculture says it lays eggs on crops and plants and eventually kills them.

The bugs can lay egg masses with up to 50 eggs each.

Officials fear the Spotted Lanternfly can destroy Jersey City’s urban forest.


https://newyork.cbslocal.com/2019/10/0 ... -city-spotted-lanternfly/

Posted on: 2019/10/8 16:08
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Jersey City Residents Say Chaotic Bike Lanes Send Cyclists The Wrong Way In Front Of A School, Churc
#28
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Home away from home


Jersey City Residents Say Chaotic Bike Lanes Send Cyclists The Wrong Way In Front Of A School, Church

September 26, 2019 at 7:11 pm

JERSEY CITY, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – Jersey City officials say the new bike lanes were meant to improve safety – but residents say the change has actually created a dangerous problem right near a school.

CBS2 cameras caught one biker after another going the wrong way on Bergen Avenue; in the newly painted bright green bike lane.


Bike lanes in Jersey City causing confusion near schools and churches. (Credit: CBS2)

The arrow on that lane however, shows it shifts from two-way access down to one-way.

Bikers are supposed to cross the street to continue on, but Terence Matthews – associate principal of Hudson Catholic High School – says this is just one of the many problems with the new bike lanes.

“You changed the bus stop by the school, now you’re running a bike lane through a bus stop,” Matthews explained.

CBS2 witnessed a passenger get off without looking both ways, walking right into the bike path, a danger especially if bikers are coming from the wrong direction.


Jersey City bus passengers must now cross bike lanes just to get to the curb. (Credit: CBS2)

Priests at St. Aedan’s say the bike lanes cause major issues especially during special events. There is no access now for funerals or weddings to pull up out front.

Others are frustrated that vehicular traffic which was reduced from four lanes down to two and three lanes.


Jersey City’s new bike lanes have now cut off the curb leading to St. Aedan’s church – not allowing access for funeral and wedding parties. (Credit: CBS2)

“It’s causing a lot of cars… causing a lot of accidents in the Journal Square area, so I think it was a waste of money,” Vilissa Jordan said.

Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop claims the reduction in lanes was a strategic safety move.

“There was a lot of crashes there, there were fatalities in that area, it was very unsafe street, so a road diet isn’t a terrible thing,” Fulop argued.

Matthews says the school was given a just few days notice about the new traffic pattern and wishes the city sought neighborhood input.

“The reality is we had 60 public meetings, 60. Not something that happened overnight,” Fulop said.

That said, the mayor says nothing is final. Parking issues and more can be adjusted, but the bike lanes will remain as part of a citywide initiative.

The mayor says new traffic patterns are part of a greater push to encourage residents to take public transportation or give biking a try to help reduce congestion.


https://newyork.cbslocal.com/2019/09/2 ... ity-bike-lanes-wrong-way/

Posted on: 2019/9/26 23:34
Top


Jersey City launching new bus service; mayor says NJ Transit falling short
#29
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Jersey City launching new bus service; mayor says NJ Transit falling short

By RYAN HUTCHINS 09/19/2019 05:02 AM EDT

JERSEY CITY — New Jersey’s second-largest city is launching its own heavily-subsidized bus system, an effort it says will ameliorate a lack of options in far-flung neighborhoods while filling gaps left by NJ Transit, which has struggled to keep up with the city’s rapidly growing population.

The new service, set to be announced Thursday morning at press conference with Mayor Steven Fulop, will be run in partnership with Via, a transportation company that operates in numerous cities across the country, but may be best known locally for running an on-demand van network that shuttles riders between uptown and downtown Manhattan locations.

In Jersey City, the company will receive $2 million annually from the city — at least to start — to establish a network of 14 vehicles that will pick up riders along dynamic routes, moving residents from neighborhoods like Greenville and the Heights to transit hubs or popular downtown locations.

No other city in the state operates such a service.

Fulop said in an interview that has been left dissatisfied by NJ Transit, which has faced years of commuter discontent with both its bus and rail services but has promised a turnaround under Gov. Phil Murphy.

The mayor, a Democrat, said the agency has made some adjustments — like adding more bus trips on some key routes — but isn’t reacting quickly enough to the changing city, which is now seen as an alternative to many popular New York neighborhoods.

“I think that we’re frustrated and a lot of people in this state are frustrated. I think we have two choices: Choice one is we continue to complain and bitch to NJ Transit that they’re not fulfilling their obligations,” Fulop said. “Or option two is we try to find our own solutions while continuing to do that.”

The new service is expected to run 150,000 rider trips per month, carrying several passengers at a time who are all headed in the same direction. Trips will cost $2 each way, with a discounted $1 fare available for low-income residents.

Residents who request a trip using Via’s phone app will be directed to a nearby “virtual” bus stop within a few blocks of their location and taken to another stop not far from their destination. The idea is increased access to key shopping and business districts, government facilities as well as PATH, ferry and light rail stations.

The service won’t work everywhere in the city. Those requesting a pickup in a busy downtown location and headed to another downtown location will be rejected.

“I think it’s going to be transformational for the city,” Fulop said.

Via, which will buy the vehicles on behalf of the city, runs similar services for other local governments and transit agencies. The company says it has more than 80 current or pending “deployments of its technology” around the world, and most are through direct partnership like the one with Jersey City.

Those locations include Los Angeles, where it operates first- and last-mile transit for LA Metro. It also operates services Seattle, West Sacramento, Calif., and Arlington, Texas, where the local government has replaced fixed bus routes with the Via service after seeing an increase in ridership.

“Via’s technology is specifically designed to provide efficient shared rides that seamlessly complement and integrate into existing public transit infrastructure,” Alex Lavoie, Via’s U.S. general manager, said in a statement. “Together with the Jersey City community and Mayor Fulop, our aim is to build a sustainable service that is priced affordably, provides equitable access to all and incorporates electric vehicles from the start.”

Jersey City, whose population is about 265,000, has far more mass transit options than most communities in New Jersey. That includes NJ Transit buses, the agency’s Hudson-Bergen Light Rail and the Port Authority’s PATH train, a subway that connects Newark, Harrison, Hoboken and Jersey City to Manhattan. There are also numerous, privately-operated “jitney” buses that make stops along several fixed routes.

Fulop says it isn’t enough, and he thinks NJ Transit has been slow to respond to local transportation needs. He says some buses are constantly crowded, despite recent changes, and notes the agency still hasn’t built a light rail stop in a neighborhood that sits between Hoboken and the roads that lead to the Holland Tunnel.

“New Jersey Transit is terrible,” Fulop said. “We’re going to push them to do what they’re required to do. But it’s really hard to work with them.”

NJ Transit says it’s trying to do better.

In the Heights, a neighborhood in the northern part of the city that overlooks Hoboken, the agency’s No. 119 bus route has struggled to keep up as more and more riders use it to reach the Port Authority Bus Terminal in Manhattan. NJ Transit says it has increased service on the route by 117 percent between 2013 and 2019. In June, it added 12 trips to the route.

The agency also made changes to the No. 86 bus route, identifying “efficiencies in the current route” that have allowed one-seat rides for residents trying to reach a popular senior center.

“Despite significant budget challenges over the last decade, we’ve worked closely with the administration to enhance bus service in response to growing demand,” Nancy Snyder, a spokesperson for NJ Transit, said in a statement. “We will continue to work closely with the administration, as we do with stakeholders across New Jersey, to maximize the availability of public transportation in Jersey City and cities throughout the state.”

https://www.politico.com/states/new-je ... sit-falling-short-1198003

Posted on: 2019/9/19 19:05
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Jersey City library renamed in honor of its longtime director
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Jersey City library renamed in honor of its longtime director


JERSEY CITY, New Jersey (WABC) -- They renamed the main library in Jersey City in honor of its longtime director Monday.

Mayor Steven M. Fulop announced the renaming of the Jersey City Free Public Library's Main Library building in honor of Priscilla Gardner.

The honor comes as Gardner steps down from her post. She is retiring after 50 years of service.

"It is fitting that the main library be named in honor of Priscilla and all of her hard work," said Fulop in a statement. "The Jersey City Free Public Library is a valuable resource in our community, and Priscilla created a community that opened doors for people who may not otherwise have had access to books and other educational resources. The impact she has made on our City will last a lifetime."

Gardner began her career as a junior library assistant in 1969. She became the library's first African American director in 2002. She spent 30 years working at Miller Branch Library, serving as branch head there from 1987-1999.

"While I am beyond grateful the mayor has chosen to recognize me, I simply worked to serve as the best Library Director for our community and never imagined being recognized in this way," Gardner said. "I am excited to start this new chapter in my life, but am also thankful for the change we have been able to create in Jersey City. It is my hope that the work I started lives on, and the Jersey City community continues to have endless access to free resources through the Jersey City Free Public Library."

Gardner established the Jersey City Free Public Library Foundation in 2004 to raise funds for capital improvements to the Library and to support Library services and programs.

Under her leadership, the foundation made critical contributions to the library, expanding the resources offered to Jersey City residents.

video:
https://abc7ny.com/society/jersey-city ... ongtime-director/5543342/

Posted on: 2019/9/17 0:57
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