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Fights, arrests after 300 youths converge on N.J. downtown

CBD high density housing

James – you should post about the ruckus last night in village of South Orange by 300 ‘youth’

The future of the village of Ridgewood once the urbanists have had their way with downtown.

Fights, arrests after 300 youths converge on N.J. downtown

By Noah Cohen | NJ Advance Media for
on May 02, 2017 at 2:46 PM, updated May 03, 2017 at 12:37 AM

SOUTH ORANGE — Police plan to boost patrols after officers from several departments were needed to disperse at least 300 young people who gathered in downtown South Orange late Saturday, sparking fights and blocking traffic.

South Orange Police Chief Kyle Kroll said Tuesday the crowd contained a mix of village teens and others from nearby communities, including Newark, East Orange and Irvington residents, who apparently arrived by public transportation.

The unruly crowd formed around 8 p.m. and kept officers busy until around midnight, according to police. Kroll said he requested assistance from the Essex County Sheriff’s Office, Maplewood and Orange police as altercations broke out among the throngs of teens and young adults.

“We just didn’t have enough officers to handle a crowd that large,” the chief said. “The agreement we have with surrounding [police departments] worked out well.

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Suburb where heroin death rate soared now leads battle against epidemic


By Matt Gray | For
on April 27, 2017 at 7:41 AM, updated April 27, 2017 at 5:26 PM

MONROE TWP. — Amanda Potopchuk’s face may look familiar.

She’s someone’s daughter. Someone’s aunt. Someone’s girlfriend. Someone’s friend.

And she’s a recovering heroin addict.

The Williamstown resident, now 29, has been sober for nine years after battling an addiction that began when she was prescribed painkillers at age 15.

You may recognize her face as one that stood next to Gov. Chris Christie during a press conference last year to discuss the addiction crisis.

“I want this to go national. I want my face to be out there,” she said. “This is the face of someone who is in sustained remission from a substance abuse disorder.”

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Judge rules against Howell over affordable housing

CBD high density housing

Kala Kachmar , @NewsQuipPublished 3:03 p.m. ET Jan. 17, 2017 | Updated 14 hours ago

A Monmouth County judge has ruled in favor of a Howell resident who challenged the zoning for a controversial affordable housing complex, but the setback doesn’t necessarily spell the end of the venture.

Judge Jamie S. Perri ruled that the town didn’t give sufficient public notice for two key project ordinances, one creating the required affordable housing zone and the other applying that zone to the parcel where Howell Family Apartments would be built, at the intersection of West Farms and Fort Plans roads off Route 9.

The $21 million project would help the town fulfill its state-mandated affordable housing obligation.

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The Future of Ridgewood: Hoboken police chief ‘disturbed’ after 15 arrested at annual Lepre-Con bar crawl

Clock CBD

By Dan Ivers | NJ Advance Media for
on March 06, 2016 at 5:59 PM, updated March 07, 2016 at 7:24 AM

HOBOKEN – Police Chief Ken Ferrante is speaking out after 15 people were arrested and dozens of others ticketed after this year’s annual Lepre-Con bar crawl.

In a statement, the chief said he was “disturbed” by what he called repeated issues with revelers at the St. Patrick’s Day-themed event, sponsored by a private promoter and local watering holes.

Arrests this year increased by four over 2015, and Ferrante specifically cited the arrest of a former college football player for allegedly breaking a city officer’s ribs and dislocating another’s shoulder.

“I will not tolerate having any of our officers injured, for the purposes of a few to make a financial profit at the expense of our residents, and for the purposes of promoting deviant behavior attached to various holidays, which results in citizens and officers being hospitalized!” he said.

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Summery of the Special Public Meeting on Ridgewood High Density ,Multi Family Housing


file photo by Boyd Loving

January 14,2016

the staff of the Ridgewood blog with input from several readers

Ridgewood NJ , the Special Public Meeting on high density multi family housing was attended by 30-35 residents attended who heard proposals for studies from five groups as follows:

1. Heyer, Gruel & Associates – who could do studies on the fiscal and school impacts
2. Maser Consuting – traffic study
3. Ross Haber Associates – school impact
4. The RBA Group – traffic study
5. BFJ Planning/Urbanomics – fiscal, infrastructure, school, and traffic

Overall the meeting was peaceful. The mayor as usual did not answer all the questions and asked some residents “your five minutes are up” when they questioned him, though they still had time, and answered questions from some others who were appreciating his efforts.

Mayor Aronsohn could not resist poking residents making a sarcastic remark about the “overflow crowd,” – stating that BF had been selected to handle a large crowd, his comment discounted the fact that 30-35 residents had come out. Which under normal circumstances would be a decent sized crowd .

The Village had two police officers present through the entire meeting, at what cost? It was also unclear whether they were guarding the Council members , or the public since threats were made from hostile council members to the public?

There were five presentations. 2 for school, 2 for traffic and one for everything. The firm which presented everything also included impact on schools and traffic. So, for schools and traffic, 3 options each were presented. For the other two impact studies, only one option was presented BFJ/Urbananomics.

The Village Manager Roberta Schoenfield stated that there had not been an RFP, that there did not need to be for this.  Thus we only wound up with ONE infrastructure group, thus no basis for comparison.

Council Women Hauck asked questions of one of the contractors regarding how to discredit residents who disagree with the results of a study.

Deputy Mayor  Pucciarelli stated that the public called for experts, and then goes ahead and questions the expertise of the experts, implying that residents should not ask any questions about how any of the proposed studies should be done.

The council seemed to agree informally to go with BFJ for the fiscal, infrastructure and school but RBA for traffic.  This was not a vote and it will be discussed further.  RBA’s description of their traffic study indicated that would use video technology at 10 intersections, considering the cars as well as the pedestrians and bicycles at each.  The tubes-in-the-road technology is outdated and only captures vehicles.  RBA also indicated that any data from studies more than 3 years old is basically useless.

They liked the fact that BFJ had the ability to do all the studies and work with each other in-house, but their traffic proposal was weak.
Roberta stated that our in-house experts are quite capable of doing some of these studies .During the initial comments the village manager mentioned that she wanted to use them as hub where traffic and school consultant will feed into them, but she also mentioned that she did not like their pricing for data collection and she wanted them to use already collected data. When one resident asked why was only one firm invited for the other two impact studies, the village manager responded that we may not even go with them and we may do those in house to save money.

It clearly sounded like the village manager doesn’t want an outside consultant to be looking at the water, fire, police, fiscal stuff closely and wants to keep that part to herself ie internally.

Eleven residents made comments, paraphrased:

The VC was thanked for changing the date of the meeting from Friday to Tuesday
Much concern about the traffic studies – one day, two days, a week, what if a snowstorm, how good a picture would any traffic study actually produce
Questions about the RUSH – why not slow down with all of this.
Questions about complying with COAH.
Questions about what was going on with Kensington Assisted Living

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Solana begins news hearings Jan. 6 before Waldwick Planning Board



Waldwick – The Planning Board is expected to hear a new application from the developer of a previously-rejected Solana assisted living facility starting Jan. 6.

Residents opposed the facility, focusing on its height variance claiming it would result in a building that loomed over their homes to the north. Residents eventually created “Preserve Our Waldwick,” which hired both an attorney and planning consultant to fortify opposition.

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Village of Ridgewood Special Public Meeting on Multi-Family Housing


Special Public Meeting – Multi-Family Housing

Ridgewood NJ, There will be a Village Council Special Public Meeting held on Friday, January 8, 2016 @ 5PM in the Court Room at Village Hall. Various Consultants will be presenting proposals for the 4 Multi-Family Housing Studies covering; fiscal impact, traffic, education & municipal infrastructure.

Planning Board and Historic Preservation Commission – Proposed Master Plan Amendment to Permit High Density Multifamily Housing Around the CBD

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Special Public Meeting for High Density Housing In Ridgewood

Clock CBD

Special Public Meeting – Multi-Family Housing

There will be a Village Council Special Public Meeting held on Friday, January 8, 2016 @ 5PM in the Court Room at Village Hall. Various Consultants will be presenting proposals for the 4 Multi-Family Housing Studies covering; fiscal impact, traffic, education & municipal infrastructure.

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Village of Ridgewood Council Reaffirms its Agreement to 4 comprehensive, independent impact studies on the high density housing

Village Council
file photo by Boyd Loving
December 10,2015

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, Last night was a huge success for residents in that village , the Village council committed to doing the four studies on the high density issue. Without the pressure from residents, this would not have happened. The meeting went late and there were no big outbursts or excitement.

Village council agreed to 4 comprehensive, independent impact studies regarding the high density housing .The 4 comprehensive independent impact studies are financial, school, traffic, infrastructure.

Mayor Aronsohn made it clear from the git-go that all four studies would happen.  Deputy Mayor Pucciarelli switched sides like a Gemini – while he was completely opposed to the four studies in September 30, now he is in full support.  This is all good, and will delay the high density housing for awhile longer.  The hearings on the housing ordinances are continued until February 10.  In spite of Aronsohn’s early declaration that the four studies would happen, public comments went on for about 2.5 hours, with 20 people speaking against the housing and often tying it in with not wanting the garage.  Seven others had spoken against the housing in the first 1/2 hour comments session.

Also the Village Council Public Meeting was the introduction of the Bond Ordinance supports the largest garage as depicted in the images and  as decided on by council majority (3-2). The garage details include parking for  405 cars (net gain of 305) totaling  136,550 square feet, height of  49’2” to the parapet and  the tower height at 68’4”. The garage requires the elimination of all on-street parking along Hudson Street, elimination of some on- street parking along South Broad Street and the rerouting of Hudson and Passaic Street traffic.

The introduction of the bond for the garage was 5-0 in favor.  This, mind you, is just the introduction. There is a pretty good indication that Susan and Mike will vote it down then, forcing Atilla the Aronsohn to head straight to the county to float the bond.  We shall see.

The public hearing and vote on the Bond Ordinance is scheduled to occur in January 2016.  In the meantime,  Council Woman Knudsen is seeking public input regarding the proposed Hudson Street garage as shown in the simulations .

At the bitter end, From 12:02 until almost 1AM, the Schedler people spoke, 9 of them.  They asked for studies to be done around Schedler as they are being done in the CBD.  They want traffic studies, air quality, noise, etc.  one guy had an audio tape that he played of the deafening noise there from 17.  A cardiologist explained the serious health risks to children who exercise in polluted air.  There was a funny exchange where Gwenn attempted to undermine the doctor’s assertions of respiratory risks when running around in bad air, and she even suggested that maybe no one should even live over there.

Other Highlights for Last night:

3515 – Bond Ordinance – Construction of Hudson Street Parking Deck ($12,300,000) – Appropriates this money for the construction of the Hudson Street parking deck

3509 – Amend Various Salary Ordinances
3512 – Amend Valet Parking Ordinance
3513 – Non-Union Salary Ordinance
3514 – Management Salary Ordinance

3489 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Establish AH-2 Zone District
3490 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Establish B-3-R Zone District
3491 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Establish C-R Zone
3492 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Establish C Zone District
3493 – Amend Chapter 190 – Land Use and Development – Amend Various Sections – Multiple Zone Districts and General Affordable Housing Regulation

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Breaking News Bergen County officials Are Seeking to Merge County Services With Cities Like Newark ,Paterson, Passaic and Jersey City

Van Nest Sq

December 3,2015
the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ , the Ridgewoood blog has learned from what we’ve seen in other presentations that this means they want to make things ‘regional’ and that means you’ll pay for costs in other towns even though you don’t get a vote?  Bergen County officials are seeking to use your tax money to fund services in other jurisdictions .

The meeting was held at Bergen Community College on Wednesday December 2nd under the guise of “Uniting New Jersey: Cities and Suburbs Working Together”,hosted by Bergen County Executive James J. Tedesco. The keynote speaker was Bergen Professor Phil Dolce, Ph.D., a noted suburban studies expert.

Bergen Professor Phil Dolce, Ph.D.,led a panel discussion featuring: Bergen County Sheriff Michael Saudino; Paramus Mayor Richard LaBarbiera; Teaneck Mayor Lizette Parker; and Jersey City Deputy Mayor Vivian Brady-Phillips on strategies for bridging the divide between suburbs and cities.

This would answer a lot of questions as to why the made dash to urbanize down town Ridgewood .

this is the invite

Officials Will Discuss Suburb/City Relationship at Forum

Elected officials from some of North Jersey’s largest suburbs and cities, including keynote speakers Bergen County Executive James J. Tedesco III and Jersey City Mayor Steven Fulop, will gather at Bergen Community College to discuss how communities can enhance collaboration during a free and open-to-the-public conference Wednesday, Dec. 2.

The “Uniting New Jersey: Cities and Suburbs Working Together” program will begin at 5 p.m. with a light buffet in the Moses Family Meeting & Training Center at the College’s main campus, 400 Paramus Road. Along with the College, the Volunteer Center of Bergen County and the North Jersey Public Policy Network will co-sponsor the event.

In addition to the keynote speakers, Bergen Professor Phil Dolce, Ph.D., a noted suburban studies expert, will lead a panel discussion featuring: Bergen County Sheriff Michael Saudino; Paramus Mayor Richard LaBarbiera; Teaneck Mayor Lizette Parker; and Jersey City Deputy Mayor Vivian Brady-Phillips on strategies for bridging the divide between suburbs and cities.

For the first time since 1950, growth in urban counties has outpaced their suburban counterparts in the New York metropolitan area, according to a Rutgers University Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy study. Experts believe the shift could have consequences for suburban areas that depend on significant property tax revenue. Bergen County, a major suburb of New York City, remains the state’s most populated county with approximately 933,572 residents according to the federal government. The county’s population has risen each year in the last decade.

For more information on the conference, or to RSVP for the light buffet and/or conference, please