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Special Village Council Meeting for May 22 at 7:30 p.m. to Focus on the Zabriskie-Schedler Turf Field Project

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the staff  of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, on May 14th, the Village of Ridgewood submitted a revised application to the State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO) concerning the Zabriskie-Schedler Turf Field Project. This revision includes a comprehensive field use assessment conducted by Suburban Consulting Engineers, Inc., addressing comments made by the SHPO in a letter dated March 22, 2024. Interested parties can view the revised application and appendices here.

Key Revisions and Updates

The most significant update in the application is a 19-page field assessment listed as Appendix 37 at the end of Part 4, though it is actually found in Part 5 of the submission. This report by Suburban Consulting Engineers answers many questions raised by SHPO representative Richard Leynes about the current field use and conditions. Notably, Suburban has previously worked on the landscape design and fine-tuning of the original application.

Peter Primavera, the controversial consultant hired by the village in April 2023, conducted historical research on the property’s designation for the Historical Registry and provided consultation on the form, content, and historical basis for both the original application and the revised submission. Primavera’s report did not specifically rebut statements about the historic value of the property made in a 2019 Hunter Research report, which was included in both the February and May applications.

Letters of Support

The original application included five letters of support for the field project, listed in February’s Appendix 17. These letters came from residents Rurik Halby (Page 200) and Jin Lee (Page 201), and from Ridgewood sports associations: the Ridgewood Junior Football Association (Pages 202, 204-206), the Maroons Soccer Club (Page 198), and the Ridgewood Lacrosse Association (Page 203).

In the revised application, Jin Lee’s letter appears without a headline in the introduction section of Appendix 1 (Page 70), along with a new letter of support from resident Chuck Handy (Page 69). However, the Halby and sports association letters were not reposted, leaving only these two letters of support in the entire revised application.

Upcoming Village Council Meeting

The Zabriskie-Schedler property will be the focus of a special Village Council meeting scheduled for May 22 at 7:30 p.m. at Village Hall. This meeting will include the introduction of a bond ordinance to finance the work and site preparation for the project.


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30 thoughts on “Special Village Council Meeting for May 22 at 7:30 p.m. to Focus on the Zabriskie-Schedler Turf Field Project

  1. Here it comes…Bidenesque!

  2. Shut it down. Enough is enough already with this debacle.

  3. Why do we need an introduction to the bond ordinanace when Siobahn Winograd specifically stated that this project has been fully funded? This seems very confusing to me. Are we being lied to again? How do we get to the bottom on what any of this means and how much more in tax dollars will be spend. Didn’t we just go through a final budget process but yet they knew this was coming. Where is there any transparency from this group. It is unreal.

    1. Do you actually believe everything that Siobhan says? Get real. She has no clue. Absolutely no clue. Proven over and over and over again. She misspeaks constantly when she is on the deus.

      1. Ha ha, actually good point and no.

  4. And for the dirt pile.

  5. They are spending all the money. How much money is in reserve.

  6. Seems like the village manager has no problems with spending Ridgewood tax dollars and will introduce a bond ordinance so that it can cost us more money. When does this financially irresponsible spending come to a hault?

    1. Do we have a financial planner for the town or is it just the “ live out of town I don’t care about tax payers or their money” manager that gets to call all the shots?

  7. So the Village Council is basically telling parents to have their kids play out by the highway.

    1. If it ultimately is built, parents/coaches will complain about traveling to that field. Games at 6pm? 20+ mins to get there from West Side. Shut it down

      1. Plus if there is an accident on Route 17, there will be NO WAY to get down West Saddle River Road at all either way in or out. It will be at a complete standstill, so there’s that and the head of RBSA said no one car pools anymore because it is too much fun to drive in separate cars to go to games. Yipee!

        1. Plus all the traffic clogging East Saddle River Road and Racetrack Road and Hollywood Avenue, and clogging down suburban narrow streets to it.

    2. Every game will be an away game

    3. That is exactly why they built the berm, to ensure the safety and protect the children from a cars and trucks careening straight off of Rt 17 since the field will be just a few feet away. However, they probably didn’t factor in all of the toxic pollutants or particulates flying off the roadway, emissions from the thousands of vehicles that use that highway and that toxic turf that they want the kids to play on for hours that create heat islands and toxic gas emissions as it is a fossil fuel product and since Ridgewood’s Mayor Vagianos has stated, they don’t have a grounds crew to maintain fields but other towns are sanitizing the turf from bacteria overgrowth, blood, saliva, sweat and other things that can end up on a a plastic playing field after each game. I am sure they are hoping that a nice occassional rainfall will keep the field clean.

      1. Maybe staph infections, while not directly connected to turf, like MRSA could occur, it has been cautioned that turf abrasions open up the possibility to infections, Getting cancer from toxic exposure is way worse and the village outlines the dangers in their RW water lawsuit by stating “PFOA and PFOS are toxic, not easily biodegradable, persistent in the environment, and pose a significant risk to human health and safety. PFOA and PFOS are associated with a variety of illnesses, including cancer, and considered particularly dangerous to pregnant women and young children.”.

    4. I know! I honestly feel West Saddle River Road should be cul-de-sac’d at the 17 if they’re going to do this.

  8. Didn’t we just learn in the latest news flash that the village also just acquired the Town Garage and that will have to be cleaned up, but have no information about how much this will cost taxpayers?
    Will Ridgewood be passing another bond ordinance for that toxic remediation project? Now additional funds for the Schedler project are required when it was specifically stated several times by council person Winograd that this project was fully funded. Seeing that the majority is in favor my assumption is that whatever they need they vote YES anyway so why do they even present this to the public. It seems like an ongoing cycle of after the fact deceit that seems to never end.

    1. Kazmark stated on Facebook that there is a bid for an LSRP, that is how we find things out in Ridgewood. I can hardly wait for the dog and pony show to see who they selected and how much money they will bilk tax payers out of to help them clean up the mess . Just another smoke show where there is likelyna handshake that has already happened given what we have all seen from this bunch.

  9. A nice occasional rainfall will not keep the plastic grass clean. It’s more likely to wash chemicals and pollutants onto it.

  10. What a waste of money. Dirty air, and noise pollution are going to be at the park..

  11. the field will be as empty as the cbd garage

  12. Something is up and I don’t trust what my gut is telling me about this project. Why would they be asking for more money if they don’t know what will be approved. Does Keith know something or someone and is assured that this is going to get fully approved. Do you think he is the kind of guy to call in favors for a quid pro quo type of situation to ensure that this project receives full approval? So many residents have unanswered questions in Ridgewood on almost every situation that takes place and yet they tell us how transparent they are and yet people only seem to find out after things have been in the works for a good long while, like putting up a parking sign for a company before it was approved. There is a lot of sneaky things happening and a manager that was a former mayor must be up to something to be askinig for money prior to project approval. Something is rotten in Ridgewood and I smell a big dirty rat, just saying.

    1. No one knows. No one will say anything. Motto is “Just doing my job”.
      That’s how the Village of Ridgewood is run.

  13. Unfortunately may folks in Ridgewood are not impressed and aren’t awarding Kazmark & Co (Vagianos / Weitz / Whinograd / Perron) any gold stars for stellar performances. In order to gain public trust, you actually need to do things to earn it. There is a pervasive frustration with the careless consequences of this councils actions where irresponsible spending seems to happen weekly. We are not crash test dummies in a crazy experiment and there is not a blank check that you can just fill out whenever you deem it acceptable. The time is now to fix the systemic issues that are plaguing Ridgewood before it is too late to turn back and more damage is done. Mistakes have been made, and people who actually understand how to manage a village and smarter in not a new concept but a critical one.

    1. Take your own counsel. Frustration? Sure, and what’s going to come of that? Nothing. If public trust was a condition precedent … well, you wouldn’t be here complaining, would you?

      These are the facts: this is the best we can do. Yup. This is it. Don’t like it? Go blame yourself. Really. You think the village managers suck? I know someone who sucks just as bad.

      1. Not sure what this stream of consciousness gibrish means.

  14. I have dialed in to many of the public meetings and workshops hosted by the village since I moved here, mostly because I am still at the office or just getting home and don’t have the time required to attend in person. That being said, I have heard Councilperson Winograd state emphatically that the new park proposed for Schedler has long been fully funded and that the money allocated was only earmarked for that project. Now we are learning that additional funds, by way of a bond ordinance, is in the works. The 2024 municipal budget consisted of money for projects thta fall into various categories to enhance the parks and other areas of the village. It also included all of the operational spending for necessary services and was only finalized a month ago. Why wouldn’t this council realize at that time, to request additional funds if they thought there was a deficit? This seems like no strategic planning is being done and it is confusing. I will be interested to see what Ms. Winograd offers as her explanation since she has been front running the details. I am also concerned that this additional request for money is premature if the required state agencies making final approvals have not yet weighed in. Residents should say no to reckless spending and municipal leaders are going to be required to adopt an open kimono approach to governing before one more dollar is requested.

    1. Whatever. As long as I get my cut.

  15. There is no agenda on the Village of Ridgewood website for this Wednesday night. I guess if it were not for reporter, Marsha Stoltz no one would be aware that there was a special meeting and that additional money was going to be mandated for such a plagued project that is steeped in controversy. When our Village Manager first joined Ridgewood last summer, I remember thinking that someone who was a mayor would understand the intracacies of trying to navigate the landscape and would possibly shake things up a bit because it didn’t look like the mayor was interested in anything but project where he had a vested interest like the pedestrian plaza that would supposedly enhance the downtown shopping/dining district, revenue from parking in the multi-level garage, and of course the all important sports complex. Over time, I have realized that Mr. Kazmark fit in quite perfectly with the majority of the council who act more like an animated version of the keystone cops that they do a responsible municipality governing properly and responsibly. I have lost faith in this group of individuals and I think their judgement is so clouded that they are likely not capable of being objective and doing the right thing for residents.

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