Our quiet, serene, beautiful and peaceful neighborhood on Van Emburgh Avenue stretching from Washington Township into Ridgewood and made up of 100 percent single family homes is about to be shattered by a court-ordered imposition of a 44-unit apartment complex. This mandate is to satisfy some nebulous rules about complying with Affordable Housing politically-correct social engineering forced on our town by the state.

I spoke against this mandate at a recent Township of Washington Planning Board for the following reasons: Many of the Township and Village residents moved here specifically to get away from densely-packed areas which have multi-family complexes.

The construction mud and noise pollution will disrupt our peaceful lives and enshroud us in a cloud of dust and dirt probably for something like two years. The now-empty land parcel they are plopping this monstrosity in is practically across the street from Immaculate Heart Academy High School. This will mean that the dozens and dozens of parents who drop their daughters off at school each morning will now be competing in traffic with arriving construction workers — excavators, plumbers, electricians, carpenters, roofers, painters, sheetrockers and landscapers, etc.

Since most people nowadays have two cars, and are two-worker households, that will mean that 88 more cars belonging to potential residents will join the traffic during the early mornings; and that number of cars doesn’t even include arriving faculty.

The loud sounds of earth movers, bulldozers, backhoes, bucket loaders, cement trucks and dump trucks as well as huge rigs delivering lumber, massive sanitary and storm pipes, roofing supplies, siding and landscaping materials will disrupt our peaceful existence.

Even if 12 of the residents of the 44-unit apartment complex have children, that means 100 brand new instant neighbors on our street.

The trouble with politically-correct mandated solutions to social concerns is that they don’t take into consideration the impact on the existing local governments. The prime example being the local school system population, police, fire, street sweeping and snow removal.

I want to urge the Township of Washington and The Village of Ridgewood to join Park Ridge and Hillsdale to put the question of “Affordable Housing” rules on the November ballot and put pressure on our state Legislature to straighten out the rules and regulations of these mandated nightmares.

Edward Galorenzo

Washington Township