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Reader calls Village Council , “shopaholics”

What every single one of them lacks is a financial brain and apparently all also are “shopaholics”, who can’t wait to find something else they can waste money on. As long as they, personally, only have to pay a small part of what they are buying, building, etc., they are all for it. I have to assume they are all personally rich since they don’t seem to care about all the expenses they are signing up, for which the town must pay. The last Council blasted the townspeople if they opposed what the council wanted. This one just keeps whistling along and stating they don’t have ANY knowledge of ANY objections to their expensive plans.

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As summer comes to a close, there are some important things the Ridgewood Chamber wants you to know

photo courtesy of the Ridgewood Chamber Facebook page
the staff of the Ridgewood blog
Ridgewood NJ, Ridgewood Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors meeting hosted a platform for Village Manager, Heather Mailander, Councilwoman, Bernadette Walsh and Detective Captain Forest Lyons, to discuss new parking meter initiative effective Sept. 4th.

Continue reading As summer comes to a close, there are some important things the Ridgewood Chamber wants you to know

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Ridgewood Central Business District Choke Points and Congestion about to get a lot Worse

photo of Ken Smith

August 8,2018
the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ , in April 2017 the Ridgewood blog suggested that the over looked issue for the central business district is not parking , but congestion . There are just to many choke points in the CBD. Be they caused by ill planned “traffic easing” with suicide bike lanes or PSE&G upgrades it has become increasingly difficult to get in or out of the Central Business District.

Bike Lane Traffic Easing Ridgewood

suicide bike lane

With 3 current projects going forward , Brogan Cadillac, Ken Smith and now the Hudson Street garage congestion will be far worse than it is now .We still need need a comprehensive plan that factors in moderate development, infrastructure , retail, restaurants , mass transit , pedestrians, cycles and parking .


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Reader says I’m really beginning to wonder if the members of the council can even balance their own checkbooks

ridgewood elks

Does anyone have a source for fake money? Maybe if we made a visual presentation on how big that amount of money is, the council could understand it better. They appear to be only able to visualize in their minds sums that do not have a large amount of zeros behind them. I was under the impression that the council members were normal people and not among the extremely wealthy in town. I guess I made the mis-assumption that ordinary people could keep track of their money when the council shows it’s only the extremely rich who can count–or even see- the zeros. An unneeded garage and an expensive building that the last I heard the “water company had enough money for the purchase.” I thought that quote was rather interesting as the dispute between towns who think they were overcharged and got court approval to collect has not even been considered as a possible loss of that extra money in repayments demanded by the court. I’m really beginning to wonder if the members of the council can even balance their own checkbooks as they certainly don’t hesitate to spend on bonds for many years in the future and don’t see how this could make it extremely impossible for Ridgewood to balance theirs.
You were elected on the premise that you would only act on things that were good for Ridgewood and reduce costs in every way possible. At this rate you all might have the dubious honor of being the council who threw away the most money in all of Ridgewood’s recorded history during your term on the council.

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Reader says This is local politics at work and this is how local politics works. A small minority of people stand to gain from the project


Enough of this economics logic stuff. Yes, the economics of this mega garage are nonsense, but no amount of logical argument is going to stop it. This is local politics at work and this is how local politics works. A small minority of people stand to gain from the project. This includes a few business owners and everyone who is involved in the project (lawyers, architects, contractors, construction workers, etc). The taxpayers are the OPM (other peoples money) who foot the bill for it all. However, these taxpayers are mostly oblivious to this whole thing, mostly focused on their kids, their jobs, their social lives, their vacations, etc. This is how it works. It’s not a Ridgewood thing, it goes on everywhere. However, what makes this work well is that towns like Ridgewood are affluent, and therefore, this kind of thing is a good place to do it. It also helps that Ridgewood is a transient town, where people move in raise kids, then move on. Ridgewood is the perfect set of circumstances for these opportunists.

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Reader says Make the citizens of Ridgewood Great again.Stop this bullshit’s not too late

Ridgewood 3 amigos

Make the citizens of Ridgewood Great again.Stop this bullshit’s not too late..the carpetbaggers housing and politicos will be long gone with the cash and moving onto their next victim communities..clear case of others peoples (OUR) money and future higher taxes to pay for the bonding which will have to be paid as a priority obligation to the banks and funding sources..they love town infrastructure debt..they know the taxpayers have to be assessed to Pay them Back,Stop this huge mistake..we are not talking about the health bond or turf fields here..this is a forever damaging proposal.Pave ,insert concrete curbing ,storm sewers lighting and lines for car stalls and get back to work VC

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Readers say Lease the Hudson lot to a developer for 99 years

Hudson garage

VC, listen up. Lease the Hudson lot to a developer for 99 years. Let the developer pay for it completely. Let them charge what they want to make it a profitable. Let them pay the cost of maintenance. Let them cut deals with local merchants, banks and restaurants for validated parking, and take nothing from them except the usual property taxes. Then, see how many developers step up. If the number is ZERO, then you have an indication that the idea is a LOSER. The Village already collects taxes from the CBD property owners, so why LOSE money by going into the garage business?

A land lease is a type of financial arrangement in which the ground under a structure is leased, rather than sold to the builder, meaning that the land and the structure are owned independently.

The Village should enter into a long term land lease with parking garage company who will pay to construct and operate the parking facility.. Since they are an independent business they should be able to charge whatever rates they wish.. Ultimately the market will determine how much people are willing to pay.

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Reader is tired of the lame excuses for photos showing plenty of parking

parking private lot

I am tired of these lame excuses. If you say you saw plenty of parking on any certain day, the garagaholics like you come back with any of the following:

. it was raining
. it was a holiday and people were out of town
. it was a holiday and people were busy with family
. it was a Monday and some restaurants are closed on Mondays
. it was too early in the day to get a fair estimate
. it was too late in the day and people had already gone home
. it was a Saturday noon and no one goes out until later
. it was a Saturday night and people were using UBER
. it was not raining so people were walking to town
. it was snowing so people were home shoveling
. it was snowing but then it stopped so people went skiing

Get it? There are ALWAYS available spots in town, in spite of Jeff Voigt’s declaration that there are 1000 cars looking for parking on the weekends. There are ALWAYS spots, regardless of whatever excuse you come up with.

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Hudson Garage Next Stop for the Village Concil the Walker Feasibility Study

village council

photo by Boyd Loving

Dollars and Cents 

February 25,2018

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, The step for the in the Hudson garage process will be the Village Council reviewing the results of the Walker Feasibility Study at the next Public Work Session on Wednesday, February 28. The study will provide a planning-level analysis of net operating income potential for the parking system when the new garage is complete, including rate adjustments that will help maintain a parking utility that is self-supporting. Armed with a thorough financial analysis, we can then move forward with discussing contract negotiations and final selection.

Councilwomen Bernie Walsh told us ,” I was impressed by the professionalism of all who presented. They brought their A game and appeared to be genuine in their desire to provide the best option to Ridgewood for a parking structure.I had to recuse myself from the Haas proposal due to a conflict. I was pleased that the time frame is shorter than expected which would lead less disruption to the Village during construction.”

Deputy Mayor Michael Sedon also gave us some similar feedback , ” I thought all presenters highlighted interesting points and the four-hour meeting gave us a lot to think about. Maintenance was included in a past Walker financial report for the bigger garage of two years ago, so the idea that this cost would eat into the revenue generated by the garage has always been on my radar. The developers presenting did a good job this time around at highlighting those costs, while hammering home the importance of maintaining this critical piece of infrastructure to protect any potential investment in our Village.
The decision the declare the Hudson Street parking lot an area in need of redevelopment was very useful in these ongoing discussions, which has given this council the flexibility to work directly with the developer chosen allowing us to bring a project to fruition which is cost effective, efficient and aesthetically pleasing.
Finally the much awaited financial report from Walker will be discussed this Wednesday. With all this important information converging simultaneously it will provide this council with the most current picture as to how the entire project could work to benefit our Village. I am looking forward to the continued discussion as the complete picture comes into focus.”

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Reader says EVERY parking study done over the past 50+ years by objective professional consultants has indicated the need for a parking garage in Ridgewood

Hudson garage

EVERY parking study done over the past 50+ years by objective professional consultants has indicated the need for a parking garage in Ridgewood. It appears the current Village Council is doing something to remedy the longstanding parking deficit. The garage will primarily serve commuters during the day and local businesses afterwards. It will be a boost to all of Ridgewood and despite the naysayers it will not destroy or diminish the character and desirability of the Village. Other higher end towns (particularly Summit and Princeton) have garages and residential property values in these towns have continued to rise. There is not one shred of evidence that the garage will negatively impact residential property values in Ridgewood. To the contrary, it will likely enhance values because prospective homeowners who commute to NY will benefit from the availability of convenient parking. This is a big benefit when you are rushing to catch your regular morning train to the city.