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Village of Ridgewood Holds Informative Public Forum on Flood Mitigation with the United States Army Corps of Engineers

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photo courtesy of the Village Manager Keith Kazmark

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Ridgewood NJ, the Village of Ridgewood recently hosted a productive and insightful public forum with the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) at Village Hall. The meeting focused on how the USACE can assist Ridgewood with flood mitigation efforts. Residents had the opportunity to share their experiences, concerns, and thoughts on the impact of flooding in the Village.

Key Issues Raised by Residents

Flooding Near Fields and Culverts
Many residents living near Vets Field and Stevens Field voiced concerns that (as predicted) the installation of artificial turf at Stevens Field has exacerbated flooding in the area. Additionally, there were numerous comments about the Village’s inadequate maintenance of culverts and drainage ditches, particularly in these regions.

Foot Bridges and Infrastructure Projects
The superintendent of schools joined the meeting via Zoom, indicating that the school district plans to prioritize the replacement of the footbridge between Stevens Field and Ridgewood High School. The Village manager also mentioned ongoing efforts to collaborate with the county to replace the bridge on Ridgewood Avenue between Herman Place and Southern Parkway, identified as a significant choke point.

Concerns About Upstream Activities
Questions were raised about potential upstream activities affecting Ridgewood, specifically the role of a Veolia Water reservoir releasing water. However, no definitive answers were provided.

Limited Discussion on Saddle River Flooding

While many residents from the Saddle River area attended the forum, there were no concrete answers regarding the causes of flooding in that region. Discussions included the possibility of replacing the footbridge between W. Saddle River Road and Kingsbridge Road, but this was not identified as a cause of flooding. Some residents have installed flood control doors, and the Village manager promised to circulate information on where to obtain such doors.

Hope Street Area Concerns

Residents from the Hope Street area also expressed concerns about flooding, attributing it to the Village’s failure to maintain culverts and drainage ditches. There was mention of a plan for the Hopper Ridge condominium complex to assist with flood control, but this plan has not been implemented.

Long-Term Solutions with USACE

The potential collaboration with the USACE could take 3 to 5 years to plan and over 20 years to complete. The forum highlighted the extended timeline for such projects, citing ongoing efforts in Somerset County and Woodland Park that began over a decade ago and remain unfinished. It is clear that any comprehensive solution to Ridgewood’s flooding issues will require significant time and effort.


The public forum with the USACE provided valuable insights and a platform for residents to voice their concerns. While immediate solutions may not be forthcoming, the Village of Ridgewood is taking steps to address flooding issues with the help of the USACE. Continued community engagement and proactive measures will be essential in mitigating the impact of flooding in the years to come.


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22 thoughts on “Village of Ridgewood Holds Informative Public Forum on Flood Mitigation with the United States Army Corps of Engineers

  1. Did anyone explain the definition of a flood plain?

    1. Send in the clowns…don’t bother, they’re already here.

  2. Excellent summary James!

  3. Dog and pony show. Showcasing Kazmark, who sang the praises of his excellent staff.

    1. It was well done.

    2. Keith kazmark is just doing the bidding for his ex and current boss before the elections.
      Keith kazmark was Paul Vagianos campaign manager and he was hired by Paul where he’s paid over 200k and has a full time dedicated PR person who works full time to promote Keith and Paul on our expense!

      1. Who gives a rat’s ass? Kazmark is a professional and knows his stuff. Polished and professional.

        Sorry, but he is on his game.

        1. He is good at his job

        2. No. He sucks

        3. Keith Kazmark is a politician and working his connections and obviously leveraging influence with the NJDEP and his friends in Trenton for the Village’s special interest projects. He probably delegates well but there are things that have fallen through the cracks while he is busy out doing photo ops. This is unacceptable. The village needs to be PROACTIVE not REACTIVE. Get it?

    3. He sucks

  4. Water problems are not limited to Ridgewood. Changes made by other towns affect us and changes that we make will affect others too. We cannot change the topography to suit our needs.

    I read the Columbia student project. Lots of suggestions that “might be costly but will payoff later”. The least expensive option was rain barrels on homeowner property. How many homes will install rain barrels when the real effect is minimal? For other interventions they do not understand that Ridgewood does not have unlimited funds and the WWF is unlikely to give us money. Kickstarter for infrastructure improvements? Raise taxes 30%?

  5. When you build in a flood plain, plan for flooding.

  6. The common denominator in all of these complaints about Village officials failing to take the necessary steps in the cleaning and maintenance of storm water drainage systems is CHRISTOPHER RUTISHAUSER.

    1. He sucks.

  7. Were the likely effects of all that new building on upper Maple discussed?

  8. You notice the lack of experience throughout the town in the past four years the place is going to the pits. Problems all around.

  9. What was well done,🧐

  10. Most of the houses on East Saddle River Road, except for the few at the Saddle River level, never flooded in the 61 years we lived there. So “Buy in a flood plain
    …” never applied to them.

  11. The people who repeatedly insist on all these God-awful turf fields have ignored loud complaints from many of us that were made long before those fields were even put in – so it is absolutely crystal clear those people do not have the towns best interest at heart. I never post anonymously here, I have nothing to hide as I am speaking the truth!

    1. I admire your honesty and transparency

  12. The current village manager is a political hack. If he wasn’t Pee Wee’s campaign manager in the past he wouldn’t be village manager today. And how is he good at his job? I haven’t noticed any change in how the village is ran since his hire. The department heads run the town. The council and village manager are just there to distract the masses while all the real decision happen from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the offices and conference rooms at village hall.

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