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Reader asks Why would someone leave a Manhattan 1 bedroom for a Ridgewood 1 bedroom?


Reader asks Why would someone leave a Manhattan 1 bedroom for a Ridgewood 1 bedroom?

Why would someone leave a Manhattan 1 bedroom for a Ridgewood 1 bedroom? It would add an hour commute, Manhattan is just as safe, and the public schools in Manhattan are, in many cases, better. The reality is different from your view.
The enclave:
2 Bedrooms / 2 Baths
1000 sq. ft.
Monthly rent: Monthly rent: $3000

It costs me less than that to own a 4br home in the Ridge school area with a 15 yr 5% mortage.
You’d have to be a moron to pay 3k for rent.

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Ten Reasons to Welcome The Master Plan Amendment (With questions and rebuttals)


Ten Reasons to Welcome The Master Plan Amendment (With questions and rebuttals)

•Additional housing choices will retain residents who outgrow their homes (But your study says that owning a $550,000 house costs about the same. Is this place for families that are downsizing or upsizing?)

•The proposed developments create lesser traffic than any other development option (Please cite specific references and back your claim up with actual data)

•Minimal additional school children (Really? I believe that this comes from yet another less-than-believable “study” funded by the applicant. Please we all just sat through 7 years of Valley “studies” and we’ve kind of had it)

•Height and mass would be the same if commercial use (But commercial buildings don’t house as many people with cars and school children as your proposed building does.)

•Parking self-sufficient (Based upon how many cars per unit and how many cars per resident? If there are no kids in your building there will be more grownups with cars. Pick one.)

•No requirement of town services (Great – then you’ll agree put down a sizable deposit against which the town can draw if you’re wrong?)

•Contributions to traffic improvement (Isn’t this from that other less-than-believable study that said that traffic will improve if we allow this building to be built?)

•$1.5 million annual net fiscal benefits to school budget and general budget (Seems light. I’d like to see the math here)

•Planned parking structure will ease clog (How does parking ease whatever “clog” is?)

•Resolves affordable housing threat (Sorry, you don’t get this one both ways either. Affordable housing will draw families with school age kids.)

•Solidifies land use in the town with minimal yield (Really? How?)

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Technology solutions to parking problems in Fort Lee


Fort Lee overhauling parking permits

Technology solutions to parking problems in Fort Lee

September 15, 2014    Last updated: Monday, September 15, 2014, 7:23 AM
The Record

FORT LEE — To prepare for increased traffic in the downtown area, the Fort Lee Parking Authority will roll out a license plate recognition system this fall that will revamp the process for parking meter collection and parking permit registration.

The system uses technology to read license plate numbers with cameras mounted atop borough vehicles, eliminating the need for physical permits and significantly cutting down on time spent on enforcement.

Fort Lee will start with one camera-equipped vehicle and probably add a second next spring, when the program expands from parking lots to residential parking areas, said Gloria Gallo, the authority administrator.

“Because of the new development, this district is going to become very busy,” she said, referring to Redevelopment Area 5 and downtown. “We want to stay up-to-date with the latest technology, and this will just be more efficient.”

Gallo hopes to open parking permit registration on Nov. 1, though delays are possible.

The technology will move the entire registration process online, allowing drivers to pay for their permits and register their license plate numbers all at once. They will no longer need to print out permits.

– See more at:

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Ridgewood in talks to allow parking at closed car dealership


Ridgewood in talks to allow parking at closed car dealership


RIDGEWOOD — Village officials announced a potential partnership with the owner of a former car dealership to provide more than 100 new parking spaces downtown — an attempt to alleviate the parking problem in town.

Village Manager Roberta Sonenfeld cautioned that no deal had been signed, but said at a recent meeting she was excited about the potential arrangement, which Ridgewood officials continue to negotiate.

As proposed, the deal would see the dismantling of the building on the Ken Smith Motors site on Franklin Avenue. Under the plan, the village would handle selling parking passes for the lot to employees working in the Central Business District.

That would leave more parking for visitors to downtown Ridgewood.

In addition, Sonenfeld told the council she has been exploring ways for the village to fund its own parking garage.

An $8 million loan, she said, would cost taxpayers $600,000 annually for $20 years.

– See more at:

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Finally – A parking solution that makes sense


Finally – A parking solution that makes sense
September 11,2014
Boyd A. Loving
2:18 PM

Our prayers have been answered – Hallelujah!

Village Manager Roberta Sonnenfeld announced on Wednesday, 09/10/2014 the Village’s intent to lease a portion of the former Ken Smith Motors property, on Franklin Avenue near North Broad Street, for purposes of providing parking for the employees of businesses operating in Ridgewood’s Central Business District (CBD).  It is believed that the proposed private/public partnership endeavor will free up many parking spaces on streets in the CBD for shoppers and restaurant goers.

No formal agreement had been reached as of Ms. Sonnenfeld’s announcement, but was revealed that Village parking enforcement agents will patrol the lot for violators, and that the Village will receive 10% of gross revenues.  More details are expected to be released once a formal contract is signed.  No word on the Village’s contribution, if any, to expenses such as building demolition, line striping, etc.

The announcement came with this advisory – the solution will not be long term in nature because the property owner wishes to develop it at a later date.

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Village Of Ridgewood 2013 parking meter & permit revenues vs. expenses


Village Of Ridgewood  2013 parking meter & permit revenues vs. expenses
September 10,2014
Boyd A. Loving
11:01 PM

Ridgewood NJ, Village Manager Roberta Sonenfeld released a report entitled:  “Village of Ridgewood Parking Utility – 2013 Revenue & Expense Summary” on 09/08/2014.

Here are the Cliff Notes:

Total revenues = $1,063,775.55

Total expenses = $902,243.45

Excess in operation (profit) = $161,532.10

The following line items were listed under “allocations/indirect expenses.”  That is, a predetermined percentage of total 2013 parking revenues was allocated to each line item:

Municipal Court
Village Attorney
Group Health Insurance
Workers Compensation Insurance
General Liability Auto Insurance
Management Information Systems
Village Clerk
Finance (Accounts & Treasury, Audit Services, Collections)
Street Services
Street Lighting
Traffic & Signal
Central Garage
Gasoline & Diesel
Electricity and Gas
Public Employees Retirement System
Social Security
Police & Fire Retirement System
Unemployment Insurance

Indirect expense allocation in 2013 was:  $791,455.28

No information was provided regarding direct expenses other than they totaled $110,788.17 in 2013

All year end fund balances PRIOR to EOY 2013 were reduced to zero (yes, nothing left, zilch) because of theft/shortfalls in revenue.


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Village’s plan to lease Gilsenan/Gap property falls flat


Village’s plan to lease Gilsenan/Gap property falls flat
September 10 ,2014

Boyd A. Loving
11:17 PMRidgewood NJ, The following resolution was unanimously approved by Village Council members on 09/08:

#14-219: Reject Bids for Lot 12 – The Gap Parking Lot – Rejects the bids for this project due to the fact that revenues did not meet the Village’s financial expectations and there were too many zoning variances required for both bids that were received.

In a nutshell, there will be no building constructed on the Village owned property between Gilsenan Insurance/Realty and The Gap. Those who were interested in the lease proposed offering way too little in terms of annual rent, and wanted to build a structure(s) much larger than what the Village Council had envisioned.

Village Council members, and select Ridgewood Chamber of Commerce members, had hoped a real estate development firm would step forward and offer big bucks to construct a 2-story retail/office building on the property. The revenues would have been earmarked for the construction of a parking deck at the Hudson Street parking lot.

This is the second complete failure associated with this plan

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Ridgewood developers would add parking


Ridgewood developers would add parking


RIDGEWOOD — The village will be getting some much-needed parking along North Walnut Street under the terms outlined in a 42-page bid soliciting potential developers for the downtown’s redevelopment zone.

A new Request for Proposal and Qualifications, or RFP, has been issued by Ridgewood officials and seeks the redevelopment of 10 properties the heart of the Central Business District.

The 2.07 acres — some of it municipally owned — was designated a “redevelopment zone” by officials in 2007, which permits mostly retail and restaurant uses.

The redevelopment zone — currently the site of an ice cream shop, an 89-space parking lot, a mechanic’s shop, restaurants and retail stores — further allows for residential developments and is already being considered by at least one developer for a future assisted-living facility for seniors.

The RFP states that all proposals and plans from interested developers must be submitted by December and must include some manner of parking garage.

While an issue for decades, the village’s lack of parking has become an increasing concern for businesses and residents.

– See more at:

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Special Public Meeting for Planning Board – September 16


NOTICE – Special Public Meeting for Planning Board – September 16



Special Public Meeting: Tuesday, September 16, 2014 

Change of Location

In accordance with the provisions of the “Open Public Meetings Act,” please be advised that the Planning Board has scheduled a special public meeting and work session for TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 16, 2014, in the RIDGEWOOD HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT CENTER, 627 E. RIDGEWOOD AVENUE, RIDGEWOOD, NJ beginning AT 7:30 p.m.

The Board may take official action during this Special Public Meeting at which time the Board will continue the public hearing concerning a proposed amendment to the Land Use Plan Element of the Master Plan which would recommend changes in zone district classifications and boundaries within the Central Business District and surrounding area including AH-2, B-3-R, C-R and C Zone Districts. 

The proposed master plan amendment and related exhibits are at the office of the Secretary of the Ridgewood Planning Board on the third floor of Village Hall, 131 North Maple Avenue, Ridgewood, New Jersey and are available for public inspection Monday-Friday between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. The amendment and exhibits are also posted as a courtesy on the Village’s website at 

All meetings of the Ridgewood Planning Board (i.e., official public meetings, work session meetings, pre-meeting assemblies and special meetings) are public meetings which are always open to members of the general public.

Jane Wondergem

Secretary to the Board

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Mayor Aronsohn Pushes a Development Agenda in Latest Mayor’s Corner

file photo by Boyd Loving
Mayor Aronsohn Pushes a Development Agenda in Latest Mayor’s Corner

Ridgewood Mayor’s Corner: Setting up for September

September 5, 2014    Last updated: Friday, September 5, 2014, 9:45 AM

Welcome to the September edition of the Mayor’s Corner – my monthly Ridgewood News column that seeks to make village government more accessible, more transparent, more user-friendly.

Council agenda: The council will meet two more times this month – Sept. 10 and 17. On the agenda will be downtown parking, public holiday displays, Planning Board-related issues and a host of other important topics.

All of our meetings are open to the public. Residents are encouraged to attend and participate. Please visit our website – – for more information or to watch the meetings online.

Parking, Parking, Parking: If there is one issue that most of us agree on, it is the need for more parking spaces in the Central Business District (CBD).

With the busiest train station on NJ Transit’s “Main Line” – over 1,500 passengers per day – and with one of the busiest downtowns in all of New Jersey, Ridgewood’s need for additional parking spaces has probably never been greater. For that reason, the council has been exploring and implementing changes to our parking situation … and there is much more to come.

With respect to short-term fixes, we recently adopted two ordinances that should increase the number of available parking spots during the day and evening hours. First, we made “surface parking” a primary use in the C Zone, thus allowing more cars to park daily in places like the former Ken Smith lot. Second, we made valet parking a reality, thus providing relief for many restaurant customers as well as those who will benefit from more on-street parking at night.

– See more at: