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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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mrrogers wrote:
The city needs to just buy it first,we can argue over its use later.
Personally it could just stay the way it is and i'd be happy(least useful application) though.

Just planting wild flowers on the top would be pretty cool till we get more money.The point is you cannot wait till you have every penny before you do something or no great thing would ever get done.My wife got pregnant before we had health insurance,crazy yes but worth every penny.

Someday Jersey City will host its own full blown Marathon and the news choppers will show the whole world a close up of the runners heading for the waterfront on top of the Embankment.

Sound silly,well i remember LSP when it was a garbage dump so anything is possible.Never give up,Never give in....


Actually, there's something to be said for keeping it as is. The Embankment right now soaks up a lot of rain water, which is very important in a flood prone area. The natural growth on top serves as a lung for the surrounding area, replacing CO2 with O2 (and a light rail would not eliminate most of those cars, because they are headed to the Holland Tunnel), it also provides a flyway and habitant for various animal species.

Posted on: 2007/8/14 12:48
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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The city needs to just buy it first,we can argue over its use later.
Personally it could just stay the way it is and i'd be happy(least useful application) though.

Just planting wild flowers on the top would be pretty cool till we get more money.The point is you cannot wait till you have every penny before you do something or no great thing would ever get done.My wife got pregnant before we had health insurance,crazy yes but worth every penny.

Someday Jersey City will host its own full blown Marathon and the news choppers will show the whole world a close up of the runners heading for the waterfront on top of the Embankment.

Sound silly,well i remember LSP when it was a garbage dump so anything is possible.Never give up,Never give in....

Posted on: 2007/8/14 3:58
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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JPhurst wrote:
Quote:

ianmac47 wrote:
The advocacy groups you mention are biased lobbying organizations that each have their own specific agendas, none of which have anything to do with providing transportation alternatives, aiding economic growth, or facing the realities of Jersey City's expanding population.


Absolutely wrong. You seem to think that these organziations have some a priori existence with a pre-set agenda. To the contrary, they are made up of individuals (with remarkably diverse backgrounds) who have formed them and advocate the positions they do because they have arrived at that position through their work, life, and experience. They, and the individuals who make them up, are no more biased than you are (but much more educated and informed).

Funny how an armchair planner who posts on a message forum is somehow an enlightened advocate for the public good, yet those who actually get out and work to achieve something for the community are "biased" and "lobbyists."

From the perspective of the Conservancy, our board and advisors are and have included educators, economic development officials, contractors who appreciate history rather than raze it, professionals such as architects, environmental and open space advocates, as well as people who were just concerned citizens.

Quote:

Further you state that there are hundreds of people in support of preserving the embankment, yet in a city of 240,000 residents, even a thousand supporters is far less than even 1%. And in addition to that, while many people want to see a park built on the land where the embankment sits, not all of those people who want a park want to preserve the stone wall.


The hundreds of people are just the people who have actually donated time, money and other resources to make things a reality. I'd be glad to put this to a voter referendum, would you?


Quote:

Like any advocacy group, these three organizations are most concerned about their own agendas rather than the greater good, or they confuse their own agenda with the greater good...Similarly, the embankment coalition, the greenway alliance, and the JCLC are not authoritative organizations on urban planning. They are agenda driven lobbyists looking to promote themselves and their values.


Ah yes, so the volunteer who receives no compensation and has no financial or other ulterior motive, other than a nice place to live, becomes someone who is trying to "promote himself." I think last time we heard this from our Sockpuppet for Developer friends.

You seem to think that any action needs to be taken by some sort of Platonic form of "Urban Planner," detached from the pesky cries of the people who, you know, actually live in the city. Cities are created by their constituents, and ideally ones who are active and seek to build community and community institutions. Residents may advocate for social services for the poor, may advocate for a light rail line, may advocate for park space, may advocate for night life, or may advocate for a number of such things. Without such inputs, not even the best "Urban Planner" has anything to work with.

Quote:

Yet they approach any discussion of the use of the embankment as though their beliefs are paramount, as though the debate should end with them.


Actually, had you actually been involved in the discussion over the past decade, you would have realized that was not true. When the Conservancy first approached the issue as part of the Bergen Arches campaign, our initial inclination was to support Light Rail as the best alternative, and to consider the Embankment as a possible continuation route. Our advisory council included the President of the New Jersey Association of Railroad Passengers. We have become more ambivalent on light rail for the reasons stated before. Note that we don't exclude it as a possibility. Personally, I am a member of NJ-ARP as well, and tend to be a vocal supporter of expanding rail service. So if anything, I have been led against my "biases" in supporting open space as the first option.

So, as with so many other things Ian, you are simply wrong. The Conservancy and other groups involved did not approach the issue with a pre-set agenda and say that the debate ends there. Rather, we approached the discussion with an open mind as to all possibilities, and have arrived at positions based on the facts as they developed and as they continue to develop.

If you really think light rail is the best use, then go out and do something about it. And I don't mean post on JClist and make inaccurate personal attacks on the volunteers who disagree with you. I mean go out and secure millions of dollars in funding (done by EPC and its allies), and get hundreds of people to support and volunteer for the cause (ditto), and help retain legal counsel to set aside the unlawful sale of the property so it can be put aside for public use (actually, you don't have to do that, because that's now been done for you. You're welcome, again.).

And convince NJ Transit to shelve the other proposed HBLRT extensions, because you insist that the Embankment Bergen Arches extension is more important than service to Bergen County, to the Meadowlands via North Bergen, or to NJCU, Rte 440, Society Hill, Kearny and Newark Airport. And while your at it explain to NJT why another HBLRT extension trumps Monmouth-Ocean-Middlesex service, or the Lackawanna Cutoff, the RIVER LINE extension to the capital, or the West Trenton Line. Oh, and then there's that little project that has to do with building another tunnel under the Hudson, how could I forget?!

Sorry, we can't do that last one for you. Because after all, we know nothing about transportation or urban planning, right?


JP- Thank you for this well put, honest and articulate post!

Posted on: 2007/8/14 3:06
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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ianmac47 wrote:
The advocacy groups you mention are biased lobbying organizations that each have their own specific agendas, none of which have anything to do with providing transportation alternatives, aiding economic growth, or facing the realities of Jersey City's expanding population.


Absolutely wrong. You seem to think that these organziations have some a priori existence with a pre-set agenda. To the contrary, they are made up of individuals (with remarkably diverse backgrounds) who have formed them and advocate the positions they do because they have arrived at that position through their work, life, and experience. They, and the individuals who make them up, are no more biased than you are (but much more educated and informed).

Funny how an armchair planner who posts on a message forum is somehow an enlightened advocate for the public good, yet those who actually get out and work to achieve something for the community are "biased" and "lobbyists."

From the perspective of the Conservancy, our board and advisors are and have included educators, economic development officials, contractors who appreciate history rather than raze it, professionals such as architects, environmental and open space advocates, as well as people who were just concerned citizens.

Quote:

Further you state that there are hundreds of people in support of preserving the embankment, yet in a city of 240,000 residents, even a thousand supporters is far less than even 1%. And in addition to that, while many people want to see a park built on the land where the embankment sits, not all of those people who want a park want to preserve the stone wall.


The hundreds of people are just the people who have actually donated time, money and other resources to make things a reality. I'd be glad to put this to a voter referendum, would you?


Quote:

Like any advocacy group, these three organizations are most concerned about their own agendas rather than the greater good, or they confuse their own agenda with the greater good...Similarly, the embankment coalition, the greenway alliance, and the JCLC are not authoritative organizations on urban planning. They are agenda driven lobbyists looking to promote themselves and their values.


Ah yes, so the volunteer who receives no compensation and has no financial or other ulterior motive, other than a nice place to live, becomes someone who is trying to "promote himself." I think last time we heard this from our Sockpuppet for Developer friends.

You seem to think that any action needs to be taken by some sort of Platonic form of "Urban Planner," detached from the pesky cries of the people who, you know, actually live in the city. Cities are created by their constituents, and ideally ones who are active and seek to build community and community institutions. Residents may advocate for social services for the poor, may advocate for a light rail line, may advocate for park space, may advocate for night life, or may advocate for a number of such things. Without such inputs, not even the best "Urban Planner" has anything to work with.

Quote:

Yet they approach any discussion of the use of the embankment as though their beliefs are paramount, as though the debate should end with them.


Actually, had you actually been involved in the discussion over the past decade, you would have realized that was not true. When the Conservancy first approached the issue as part of the Bergen Arches campaign, our initial inclination was to support Light Rail as the best alternative, and to consider the Embankment as a possible continuation route. Our advisory council included the President of the New Jersey Association of Railroad Passengers. We have become more ambivalent on light rail for the reasons stated before. Note that we don't exclude it as a possibility. Personally, I am a member of NJ-ARP as well, and tend to be a vocal supporter of expanding rail service. So if anything, I have been led against my "biases" in supporting open space as the first option.

So, as with so many other things Ian, you are simply wrong. The Conservancy and other groups involved did not approach the issue with a pre-set agenda and say that the debate ends there. Rather, we approached the discussion with an open mind as to all possibilities, and have arrived at positions based on the facts as they developed and as they continue to develop.

If you really think light rail is the best use, then go out and do something about it. And I don't mean post on JClist and make inaccurate personal attacks on the volunteers who disagree with you. I mean go out and secure millions of dollars in funding (done by EPC and its allies), and get hundreds of people to support and volunteer for the cause (ditto), and help retain legal counsel to set aside the unlawful sale of the property so it can be put aside for public use (actually, you don't have to do that, because that's now been done for you. You're welcome, again.).

And convince NJ Transit to shelve the other proposed HBLRT extensions, because you insist that the Embankment Bergen Arches extension is more important than service to Bergen County, to the Meadowlands via North Bergen, or to NJCU, Rte 440, Society Hill, Kearny and Newark Airport. And while your at it explain to NJT why another HBLRT extension trumps Monmouth-Ocean-Middlesex service, or the Lackawanna Cutoff, the RIVER LINE extension to the capital, or the West Trenton Line. Oh, and then there's that little project that has to do with building another tunnel under the Hudson, how could I forget?!

Sorry, we can't do that last one for you. Because after all, we know nothing about transportation or urban planning, right?

Posted on: 2007/8/14 2:36
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Re: Embankment sale invalid
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DanL wrote:
got the ruling, but passed on the money...

is the Mayor now in a pickle......



Actually, the Mayor, at least nominally, asked for authority to apply. It's the council that authorized the lawsuit, then passed on the money to acquire. Bizarre.

Posted on: 2007/8/14 1:41
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Re: Embankment sale invalid
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got the ruling, but passed on the money...

is the Mayor now in a pickle......

Quote:

loucheNJ wrote:
"I am pleased the Surface Transportation Board ruled in favor of the city and the community this week," Mayor Jerramiah Healy said. "Their decision removes a major obstacle to the city and the community's goal to turn this embankment into green space and a light rail line to the city's Downtown area."

Is a light rail down the embankment or along 6th street a community goal?

Posted on: 2007/8/14 0:51
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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ianmac47 wrote:
The advocacy groups you mention are biased lobbying organizations that each have their own specific agendas, none of which have anything to do with providing transportation alternatives, aiding economic growth, or facing the realities of Jersey City's expanding population.


Good God! Advocacy groups with agendas?!?! What next, voters with opinions? This is madness, sir. Thank you for opening our eyes.

Posted on: 2007/8/13 16:11
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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The advocacy groups you mention are biased lobbying organizations that each have their own specific agendas, none of which have anything to do with providing transportation alternatives, aiding economic growth, or facing the realities of Jersey City's expanding population.

The Embankment Preservation Coalition:

"The Pennsylvannia Railroad Harsimus Stem Embankment Coalition is a 501(c)3 organization incorporated in the State of New Jersey. It works to protect the elevated stone embankment that was once the easternmost portion of the Pennsylvania Railroad freightway,"

The East Coast Greenway:

"The Alliance plays an essential role in making the East Coast Greenway a reality. We set the vision, define clear criteria for the kind of trail to be created, provide the needed coordination among the many players who will develop, own, and manage the trail"

Jersey City Landmarks Conservancy:

"Founding members, alarmed by rampant development, came together in a concerted effort to preserve, protect, and promote other irreplaceable historic resources of Jersey City, such as Whitlock Cordage, Reservoir 3, The Bergen Arches, Cobblestone Streets, St. John's Episcopal Church, and the Warehouse Historic District....JCLC works to preserve endangered historic sites, conducts historical walking and bus tours, sponsors historical exhibitions, and publishes preservation-related literature"

Further you state that there are hundreds of people in support of preserving the embankment, yet in a city of 240,000 residents, even a thousand supporters is far less than even 1%. And in addition to that, while many people want to see a park built on the land where the embankment sits, not all of those people who want a park want to preserve the stone wall.


Quote:

Ultimately, the concerns about light rail are not based on the "passions" of a "vocal minority" who don't know as much about urban planning as the I-man. Rather, they are carefully considered positions which have been arrived at by people who have, for several years, been involved in a unique opportunity to utilize a historic and natural resource for a public good. It bears noting that these people are not just yelling at others to do the job. These are the same people who worked to secure millions of dollars and funding to acquire the property, and to fight the legal battle which, last week, resulted in a crucial win that gives the city an opportunity to utilize the Embankment for public good, whether as rail or as open space.



The embankment coalition makes clear their single purpose is to save the elevated stone embankment. The coalition's purpose is not to create a sustainable city or to manage Jersey City's growth or transportation needs; it exists to prevent the destruction of the embankment.

The Greenaway alliance has a specific goal of connecting east coast cities with "an urban alternative to the highly popular Appalachian Trail." That's a great goal, but has nothing to do with creating a sustainable city. While a trail system is transportation oriented, it has absolutely nothing to do with practical considerations for moving people on daily basis. Their interest is entirely based on creating the trail network, not creating a transportation network to service the thousands of daily commuters of the metropolitan region.

Finally the JC Landmarks Conservancy is again an organization of preservation, with a stated goal of ensuring critical landmarks are preserved. Yet again, there is no mention of managing the city's growth or balancing future needs.

Like any advocacy group, these three organizations are most concerned about their own agendas rather than the greater good, or they confuse their own agenda with the greater good. The NRA probably wouldn't support a ban on handguns in cities; the Sierra Club probably wouldn't support lower standards for auto emissions; Christian fundamentalists probably wouldn't support building an abortion clinic. But the NRA isn't an authority on crime, nor the Sierra Club an authority the auto industry, nor right to life groups authorities on abortion. Similarly, the embankment coalition, the greenway alliance, and the JCLC are not authoritative organizations on urban planning. They are agenda driven lobbyists looking to promote themselves and their values. Yet they approach any discussion of the use of the embankment as though their beliefs are paramount, as though the debate should end with them.

Just because you and your organization have spent years working towards a goal does not make it the right goal or the best goal. Members of Americans for Fair Taxation may spend years studying the federal tax system, but that doesn't mean the best public policy is to "abolish all federal personal and corporate income taxes, gift, estate, capital gains, alternative minimum, Social Security, Medicare, and self-employment taxes and replaces them with one simple, visible, federal retail sales tax."

Posted on: 2007/8/13 15:44
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Re: Embankment sale invalid
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ianmac47 wrote:
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loucheNJ wrote:
Is a light rail down the embankment or along 6th street a community goal?


Yes, for those of us who are not blinded by the passionate cries of a vocal minority and by those who understand the fundamental needs of a growing city.


Ah yes, another classic "IMacFact." That is, an assertion spouted with much conviction but with little actual basis in reality.

The position of the Embankment Preservation Coalition, the Jersey City Landmarks Conservancy, the East Coast Greenway Alliance, the various downtown neighborhood associations, and the hundreds of individuals who the I-man bizarrely tries to deride as the "vocal minority" have been flexible on the subject of light rail.

Theoretically, light rail could be beneficial. However, the route in question would be a marginal improvement. The proposal is to take the light rail over the Embankment, through the Bergen Arches, and eventually wind up at Secaucus Junction.

This route is largely redundant. One can already take a train from Secaucus Junction to Hoboken and switch to the light rail there. Positive redundancy is not necessarily a bad thing, and the light rail could also add intermediate stops in between, so there is use for it.

And if anyone is really thinking big, the light rail could go further out. During the Bergen Arches transportation study, one of the transportation planners proposed extending the route from Secaucus Junction to also stop at Harmon Cove (which lost rail service when the new station opened), a Route 3 Park and Ride Stop, and a Meadowlands/Giant Stadium stop.

Still, the Embankment's supporters cannot simply jump on the light rail bandwagon unconditionally. When one goes beyond the lines of "fantasy mapping" and armchair urban planning on JClist, one recognizes several obstacles....

1) There are some engineering obstacles, which were acknowledged by the transportation planners. Crossing the Hackensack, making the transition from the Arches to the Embankment. These are not insurmountable barriers, but make light rail construction more difficult than simply extending the tracks over former railroad rights of way.

2) NJ Transit has expressed little interest in this extension. If anything, the next step for light rail expansion (not counting south from 22nd St. in Bayonne to 8th St), will be from the Tonnelle Avenue station. Possibly up the Northern Branch to Tenafly. Possible out west to the Meadowlands (which would make the Embankment/Bergen Arches route even more redundant). And there's also some talk of expanding from West Side Avenue to the Society Hill 440 area, and possibly out to Kearny (which lost rail service with the advent of Midtown Direct service) continuing to, egads, Newark Airport! And then, of course, there are other statewide projects that have been in the making for years if not longer. Monmouth-Ocean-Middlesex Service, the Lackawanna Cutoff Extension, and the like.

In short, if you want HBLRT service expanded this way, get in line, and prepare to justify why another route through JC should be bumped ahead of many parts of the region which still don't have any rail service whatsoever. There is a reason it is called Hudson BERGEN Light Rail Transit, ya know.

3) When constructing lines that interact with historic and natural resources, NJ Transit has behaved with all the delicacy of a bull in a China Shop. The cliffs on the Palisades in Weehawken were coated over with this foam cement which makes the natural landscape look like Disney's Matterhorn ride.

And yes, I am aware that it is a well established IMacFact that the Embankment is nothing more than a pile of stone. Personally, I will defer to the opinion of the state and local historic preservation offices/commission, who consider both the Embankment and Arches to have historic significance.

4) Open Space is as much a need for a city as public transit. And people are entitled to make the policy decision that they want the former, rather than the latter.

5) Funding is available, from government and other sources, for acquisition of green space. The Embankment Preservation Coalition has secured this funding, and it is endangered by the Mayor's insistence on light rail, because that money can only be used for open space. Transportation funding may be available from other sources, but as noted in point 2 above, right now this just is not considered a priority project. By stating its intention to have light rail on the Embankment and through the arches (even though such plans are highly speculative), the city is leaving possibly millions of dollars at the table.

Ultimately, the concerns about light rail are not based on the "passions" of a "vocal minority" who don't know as much about urban planning as the I-man. Rather, they are carefully considered positions which have been arrived at by people who have, for several years, been involved in a unique opportunity to utilize a historic and natural resource for a public good. It bears noting that these people are not just yelling at others to do the job. These are the same people who worked to secure millions of dollars and funding to acquire the property, and to fight the legal battle which, last week, resulted in a crucial win that gives the city an opportunity to utilize the Embankment for public good, whether as rail or as open space.

You're welcome.

Joshua Parkhurst
President
Jersey City Landmarks Conservancy

Posted on: 2007/8/13 14:20
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Re: Embankment sale invalid
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loucheNJ wrote:
Is a light rail down the embankment or along 6th street a community goal?


Yes, for those of us who are not blinded by the passionate cries of a vocal minority and by those who understand the fundamental needs of a growing city.


I guess the A.U.P (Armchair Urban Planners) don't have much of a lobby.

Posted on: 2007/8/13 13:37
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Re: Embankment sale invalid
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loucheNJ wrote:
Is a light rail down the embankment or along 6th street a community goal?


Yes, for those of us who are not blinded by the passionate cries of a vocal minority and by those who understand the fundamental needs of a growing city.

Posted on: 2007/8/13 13:28
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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well i think the basic proposal was to have half of the width be used for lightrail, and the other half as a walkway/bikepath if im not mistaken

Posted on: 2007/8/13 13:20
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Re: Embankment sale invalid
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"I am pleased the Surface Transportation Board ruled in favor of the city and the community this week," Mayor Jerramiah Healy said. "Their decision removes a major obstacle to the city and the community's goal to turn this embankment into green space and a light rail line to the city's Downtown area."

Is a light rail down the embankment or along 6th street a community goal?

Posted on: 2007/8/13 12:58
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Embankment sale invalid
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Embankment sale invalid

Monday, August 13, 2007
By JARRETT RENSHAW
JOURNAL STAFF WRITER

Board rules Conrail failed to get required approval

A federal board has ruled that Conrail failed to secure the required regulatory approval before it sold the Sixth Street Embankment in 2005 to businessman Steve Hyman, opening the door for Jersey City to purchase the property - and end years of controversy about the site's future.

The ruling, issued Wednesday by the Surface Transportation Board, forces Conrail to go back and seek approval to abandon the site from the Interstate Commerce Commission and STB before the Philadelphia-based freight railroad company can sell the property. However, Conrail would first have to offer the property to the city before selling it to a private entity, according to city officials.

Although the STB did not explicitly address whether its decision invalidated Hyman's purchase of the property, the city is interpreting that way - with one law department official calling it "the only logical extension" from the ruling.

City officials said the decision allows them to seek a transfer of the property's title back to Conrail through the court system, whether at the federal or state level.

Hyman agreed with the city's assessment of the decision, but he said that does not mean that he won't end up with the property in the end.

"I got court-ordered planning approvals at the site, which means the property is much more valuable than when I bought it, and I don't think the city will be willing to put up that kind of money," said Hyman, who purchased the 6.2 acres for roughly $3 million in 2005 and hoped to build two-family homes.

The city's law department said those approvals are no longer valid since "Hyman never owned the property."

A spokesman for Conrail said the company is holding back on any official statement until its attorneys take a more careful review of the decision.

Conrail attorneys unsuccessfully argued that the rail line was an "ancillary" or a "spur," a designation that would relieve the rail company of the federal approval obligation.

In arguing for the main line designation, the city pointed out that the Embankment, which served as pipeline for the city's once-mighty industrial Downtown area for decades, carried at least 3,000 carloads per year for multiple customers.

Assemblyman Lou Manzo, D-Jersey City, initially filed the lawsuit with STB and was eventually joined by the city and civic groups, such as the Embankment Preservation Coalition, which formed nine years ago to save the site.

"It's extremely important decision, and we feel it now gives the city a great chance at getting great public use out of the property," said Maureen Crowley, Embankment Preservation Coalition coordinator.

Crowley noted that more than $3 million of federal and state funds have already been earmarked for the purchase

"This is a great day for the residents of Jersey City, and it's time to move to the next step of getting the funding necessary to move ahead," Manzo said.

"I am pleased the Surface Transportation Board ruled in favor of the city and the community this week," Mayor Jerramiah Healy said. "Their decision removes a major obstacle to the city and the community's goal to turn this embankment into green space and a light rail line to the city's Downtown area."

Posted on: 2007/8/13 12:41
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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mrrogers wrote:
I wouldn't want that dirtbag to do any thing on top because he might leval the place while weeding.


We should be so lucky.

Posted on: 2007/8/12 12:33
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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At street level where people have to walk.I cross the street because you can't walk on that side.I wouldn't want that dirtbag to do any thing on top because he might leval the place while weeding.

Posted on: 2007/8/12 2:19
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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You mean on the top level or on the walls, or at the street level? My understanding is that the embankment is an island out of human intervention. There was something about rare butterflies on the coalition website, I think. I thought the charm of the place is the way nature reconquers what it lost. With grass at the level of my backyard, I can't see why it should be preserved.

Posted on: 2007/8/11 23:59
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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Anyone notice the overgrown weeds all along the embankment.
We should all call to complain and force the present owner to cut the grass or be fined like everyone else in this city.Those fines can run up pretty fast and would give the city leverage when negotiating.

Posted on: 2007/8/11 19:52
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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I just watched 'House Hunters International' on HGTV, and this woman wants to buy a home in Lucca, Tuscany.

Lucca has a wall around the city, and the people walk, jog and cycle on it. Interesting.

http://www.knowital.com/html/lucca_-_the_town_walls.html

Posted on: 2007/8/11 3:24
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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http://www.stb.dot.gov/decisions/read ... 73320048619e?OpenDocument



In the decision there is this paragraph:

[2] The petition is supported by United States Senators Robert Menendez and Frank R. Lautenberg, United States Representatives Frank Pallone, Steven R. Rothman, Robert E. Andrews, Donald M. Payne and Bill Pascrell, Jr., and Governor Jon S. Corzine. Letters supporting the petition were also received from the County of Hudson Department of Public Resources, Hamilton Park Neighborhood Association, Preservation New Jersey, East Coast Greenway Alliance, NY/NJ Baykeeper, Harsimus Cove Association, Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance, Historic Paulus Hook Association, Inc., the Jersey City Landmarks Conservancy, Inc., the North Jersey Transportation Planning Authority, Inc., and Bernard F. Kenny, Jr., Senate Majority Leader, State of New Jersey.

Well Done Everyone!

Posted on: 2007/8/11 2:41
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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What To Do Now!

Pennsylvania Railroad Harsimus Stem
Embankment Preservation Coalition


Nine years ago residents of Jersey City organized the Embankment Preservation Coalition to save the Pennsylvania Railroad Harsimus Stem Embankment, 6th Street, Jersey City, from demolition and replacement with undistinguished housing. See www.embankment.org for background on the struggle

1. Speak out at these two these two critical public meetings coming up in the next two weeks:

* Jersey City Planning Board
, Tuesday, August 14, 5:30 pm, City Hall, 280 Grove St. [/b] The developer has applied for Final Major Site Plan approval for four Embankment blocks, 6th Street, from Erie to Brunswick. The hearing begins with Item 6 on the agenda.

* Jersey City Historic Preservation Commission*, Monday, August 20, City Hall, 280 Grove Street, Council Chambers, 6:30 p.m. The developer has applied for demolition permits for the massive Embankment structures and, if denied approval, will ask for a hardship exemption

Your presence, or that of your authorized representative, at these meetings is mandatory if your comments are to count. If you write a letter, it will be placed in the project file but will not be considered by the board or commission, and it will not appear in the record likely to be reviewed by courts.)

2. Call Mayor Jerramiah Healy (201-547-5200) and Council President Mariano Vega (201-547- 5268)['/b] and tell them you want the City to acquire the Embankment.

[b]3. Join the Embankment Preservation Coalition subscribers list
so you can keep up with late-breaking news and Action Alerts. Go to www.embankment.org and sign up, or email Moher1@aol.com with your contact information, including email and phone.

4. Join the Embankment Area Property Owners Association newly forming to protect the private property rights of the hundreds of property owners within 200 feet of the Embankment. Contact: John Perls, jperls@hammerheadadvertising.com 201-963-0232

*Information about the Planning Board and Historic Preservation Commission composition and duties can be found at http://cityofjerseycity.com/cityclerk/index.html#clerk . Select the links Jersey City Municipal Code, and then Chapter 245, for descriptions of the land use boards.



For more information about these items, please contact:
Maureen Crowley, Coordinator
Embankment Preservation Coalition
201-963-0232 Moher1@aol.com

Please let us know what you will be doing to help!



Quote:

BrightMoment wrote:
Embankment Tracks
The Newsletter of the Embankment Preservation Coalition

City & Coalition Win at STB

Aug. 9. In a big win for the City of Jersey City and the Embankment Preservation Coalition, the federal Surface Transportation Board ruled today that Conrail needs authorization to abandon the 6th Street Embankment. Conrail sold the property to an investor, SLH Properties, in July 2005, without requesting authorization from the Board.

But Further Community Action Required

Community Asked to Speak Out At Hearings Aug. 14 & 20
Though the Surface Transportation Board ruling noted above should take precedence over local land use applications, the developer may move ahead in the hopes that the STB ruling will be overturned on appeal.

For this reason, we are asking supporters to speak out at two hearings scheduled in the next ten days:

Tuesday, August 14, 5:30 pm, Jersey City Planning Board, City Hall, 280 Grove St. The developer has applied for Final Major Site Plan approval for four Embankment blocks, 6th Street, from Erie to Brunswick. The hearing begins with Item 6 on the agenda.

Monday, August 20, 6:30 pm, Jersey City Historic Preservation Commission, City Hall, 280 Grove St. The developer has applied for demolition permits for the massive Embankment structures and, if denied approval, will ask for a hardship exemption.

To prepare for these meetings, see our letter to property owners along the Embankment and the flyer "What To Do Now."

Click here for a chronology of events and actions concerning the Embankment.

Information about the composition and duties of the boards can be found here. Select the links Jersey City Municipal Code and then Chapter 245, for descriptions of the land use boards.

Full Story on STB Decision
Federal Board Rules for City and Embankment Preservation Coalition


Washington, D.C., Aug. 9. In a big win for the City of Jersey City and the Embankment Preservation Coalition, the federal Surface Transportation Board ruled today that Conrail needs authorization to abandon the 6th Street Embankment. Conrail sold the property to an investor, SLH Properties, in July 2005, without requesting authorization from the Board.

"This is a huge win," said Jennifer Meyer, Coalition president. "It opens many opportunities now for the City to work with willing County and State partners to secure the property for public use. It also looks as if the sale to the developer is void. Until we understand the ramifications of the decision, however, the community must maintain its vigilance. The developer has applications for Major Site Plan Review and demolition permits before the Planning Board and Historic Preservation Commission in the next ten days. For all we know, he may press on with his local land use applications in the hope that the STB decision will be overturned on appeal. We are therefore asking Embankment supporters to attend the Planning Board meeting August 14 and the Historic Preservation Commission meeting August 20 and speak out for preservation."

The City of Jersey City, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, the Embankment Preservation Coalition, and Assemblyman Louis Manzo filed the STB petition in January 2006. As the Coalition awaited the decision, it identified acquisition funding and secured recognitions making the site eligible for special funding.

Charles Montange, attorney for the City and the Coalition, said that "STB's decision today follows the law to the letter. The Harsimus Embankment was clearly a line of railroad, it was conveyed to Conrail as a line of railroad, it was used by Conrail as a line of railroad, and it can only be abandoned and sold to a developer if Conrail first obtains abandonment authority from STB, which of course Conrail clearly did not. This is a great victory for Jersey City, the historic preservation community, Rails to Trails Conservancy, and supporters of the East Coast Greenway."

For the full text of the STB decision, click here.

Quote:
In sum, we conclude that Conrail acquired the Embankment as a line of railroad under Line Code 1420 of the FSP. Thus, the Embankment is a line of railroad subject to Federal abandonment regulation. Accordingly, the Embankment property sold to SLH remains part of the national rail system subject to the Board?s exclusive jurisdiction until appropriate abandonment authority is obtained.

This action will not significantly affect either the quality of the human environment or the conservation of energy resources.

It is ordered:


1. Petitioners? motion for leave to file a Penn Central Track Chart is granted, and the supplemental filings are accepted into the record as set forth in this decision.

2. The petition for declaratory order is granted; this proceeding is discontinued.

3. This decision is effective on September 8, 2007.

By the Board, Chairman Nottingham, Vice Chairman Buttrey, and Commissioner Mulvey.
Vernon A. Williams

Secretary


JOIN NOW!
Help Us Increase Our Strength in Numbers!

The Embankment Preservation Coalition has approximately 900 supporters who\'ve indicated they want to keep informed about Embankment events. As we approach the final days of our nine-year struggle to preserve the Embankment, we hope more of you will become dues-paying members. Memberships start as low as $5 for seniors and students and $10 for other individuals.
Please see our website for membership forms.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 21:53
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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Quote:

tern wrote:
Does the coalition need money, if so what is it used for?

Is the money very important, or is it more important for us to come out and show numbers at the meetings?

Robin.


Monies are used to pay lawyers. The rest of us are all volunteers and receive no monies.

It is more important to come out, sign up to talk and be at the meetings.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 17:04
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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Does the coalition need money, if so what is it used for?

Is the money very important, or is it more important for us to come out and show numbers at the meetings?

Robin.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 16:44
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Re: Embankment- Update Thread
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Embankment Tracks
The Newsletter of the Embankment Preservation Coalition

City & Coalition Win at STB

Aug. 9. In a big win for the City of Jersey City and the Embankment Preservation Coalition, the federal Surface Transportation Board ruled today that Conrail needs authorization to abandon the 6th Street Embankment. Conrail sold the property to an investor, SLH Properties, in July 2005, without requesting authorization from the Board.

But Further Community Action Required

Community Asked to Speak Out At Hearings Aug. 14 & 20
Though the Surface Transportation Board ruling noted above should take precedence over local land use applications, the developer may move ahead in the hopes that the STB ruling will be overturned on appeal.

For this reason, we are asking supporters to speak out at two hearings scheduled in the next ten days:

Tuesday, August 14, 5:30 pm, Jersey City Planning Board, City Hall, 280 Grove St. The developer has applied for Final Major Site Plan approval for four Embankment blocks, 6th Street, from Erie to Brunswick. The hearing begins with Item 6 on the agenda.

Monday, August 20, 6:30 pm, Jersey City Historic Preservation Commission, City Hall, 280 Grove St. The developer has applied for demolition permits for the massive Embankment structures and, if denied approval, will ask for a hardship exemption.

To prepare for these meetings, see our letter to property owners along the Embankment and the flyer "What To Do Now."

Click here for a chronology of events and actions concerning the Embankment.

Information about the composition and duties of the boards can be found here. Select the links Jersey City Municipal Code and then Chapter 245, for descriptions of the land use boards.

Full Story on STB Decision
Federal Board Rules for City and Embankment Preservation Coalition


Washington, D.C., Aug. 9. In a big win for the City of Jersey City and the Embankment Preservation Coalition, the federal Surface Transportation Board ruled today that Conrail needs authorization to abandon the 6th Street Embankment. Conrail sold the property to an investor, SLH Properties, in July 2005, without requesting authorization from the Board.

"This is a huge win," said Jennifer Meyer, Coalition president. "It opens many opportunities now for the City to work with willing County and State partners to secure the property for public use. It also looks as if the sale to the developer is void. Until we understand the ramifications of the decision, however, the community must maintain its vigilance. The developer has applications for Major Site Plan Review and demolition permits before the Planning Board and Historic Preservation Commission in the next ten days. For all we know, he may press on with his local land use applications in the hope that the STB decision will be overturned on appeal. We are therefore asking Embankment supporters to attend the Planning Board meeting August 14 and the Historic Preservation Commission meeting August 20 and speak out for preservation."

The City of Jersey City, Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, the Embankment Preservation Coalition, and Assemblyman Louis Manzo filed the STB petition in January 2006. As the Coalition awaited the decision, it identified acquisition funding and secured recognitions making the site eligible for special funding.

Charles Montange, attorney for the City and the Coalition, said that "STB's decision today follows the law to the letter. The Harsimus Embankment was clearly a line of railroad, it was conveyed to Conrail as a line of railroad, it was used by Conrail as a line of railroad, and it can only be abandoned and sold to a developer if Conrail first obtains abandonment authority from STB, which of course Conrail clearly did not. This is a great victory for Jersey City, the historic preservation community, Rails to Trails Conservancy, and supporters of the East Coast Greenway."

For the full text of the STB decision, click here.

Quote:
In sum, we conclude that Conrail acquired the Embankment as a line of railroad under Line Code 1420 of the FSP. Thus, the Embankment is a line of railroad subject to Federal abandonment regulation. Accordingly, the Embankment property sold to SLH remains part of the national rail system subject to the Board?s exclusive jurisdiction until appropriate abandonment authority is obtained.

This action will not significantly affect either the quality of the human environment or the conservation of energy resources.

It is ordered:


1. Petitioners? motion for leave to file a Penn Central Track Chart is granted, and the supplemental filings are accepted into the record as set forth in this decision.

2. The petition for declaratory order is granted; this proceeding is discontinued.

3. This decision is effective on September 8, 2007.

By the Board, Chairman Nottingham, Vice Chairman Buttrey, and Commissioner Mulvey.
Vernon A. Williams

Secretary


JOIN NOW!
Help Us Increase Our Strength in Numbers!

The Embankment Preservation Coalition has approximately 900 supporters who\'ve indicated they want to keep informed about Embankment events. As we approach the final days of our nine-year struggle to preserve the Embankment, we hope more of you will become dues-paying members. Memberships start as low as $5 for seniors and students and $10 for other individuals.
Please see our website for membership forms.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 16:24
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Re: WTF!
#56
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Quote:

ianmac47 wrote:
Quote:

greenville wrote:
Wow it would be horrible seen the embankment go since it is such a beautiful peace of land. I always love to pass by the area just to see it.


Yeah, especially at night when the street lights are out and there's nothing but a ten foot wall between you and the sketchy looking guy following you. The embankment is nothing more than a crumbling pile of stones, an eyesore that has blighted the neighborhood since its erection. The greatest travesty is that the embankment land will not be put to a public use as a park or as part of a transportation system.


I doubt if Historic Preservation will see it that way. Then again, it will probably go the same way as Home Depot and the Planning Board. The board will say no, the developer will sue and maybe win. All that really matters is the city's lawsuit to prove Conrail was wrong in not offering to the city first.

Actually, all that really matters is whether the city will have the money to buy it, if the ruling goes its way.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 2:27
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Re: WTF!
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Quote:

greenville wrote:
Wow it would be horrible seen the embankment go since it is such a beautiful peace of land. I always love to pass by the area just to see it.


Yeah, especially at night when the street lights are out and there's nothing but a ten foot wall between you and the sketchy looking guy following you. The embankment is nothing more than a crumbling pile of stones, an eyesore that has blighted the neighborhood since its erection. The greatest travesty is that the embankment land will not be put to a public use as a park or as part of a transportation system.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 2:05
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Re: WTF!
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Wow it would be horrible seen the embankment go since it is such a beautiful peace of land. I always love to pass by the area just to see it. Also I cannot even imagine the parking mess this would create in the area. I hope people speak up and stop it's destruction.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 1:39
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Re: WTF!
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Does anyone have the info what newspapers this was sunshined in?

Posted on: 2007/8/10 1:35
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Re: New Townhouses available . The Olde Embankment Townhomes
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I'm so glad that we are all finally coming to are senses and fully forfeiting our communal rights for private enterprise. After all, dog, it's either you or me.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 1:17
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Re: New Townhouses available . The Olde Embankment Townhomes
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Yep, this is a lot better than a light rail line.

Posted on: 2007/8/10 1:13
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