Posted on

Westwood and NJ Transit Come to Terms Over Vacated Red and Tan Bus Terminal

302509612 475047074634972 3330867867872241799 n

the staff of the Ridgewood blog

Westwood NJ, in a Facebook post Westwood Mayor Ray Arroyo explains  progress made with NJ Transit over the vacated Red and Tan bus terminal in Westwood.

I love Wing Bikes. Use my referral link to get a discount now!

Dear Residents,

On April 5, the Mayor and Council adopted a resolution of disapproval regarding the continuation of the bus terminal use on Old Hook Road. (Resolution #22-204).
When Red and Tan vacated that facility we had hoped the non-conforming industrial use would give way to a conforming one supporting the hospital as the Master Plan and Zoning Ordinance contemplates. The bus terminal is a pre-existing non conforming use “grandfathered” in the HSO zone.
But NJT recognized the value of a ready made facility in Westwood, a fully developed Bergen County community that is also a transportation hub.
Our designation as “the hub” is tethered to some fixed physical characteristics that are both a blessing and a curse:
Our downtown mass transit point-of-departure, and arrival, is wedged against the NJT tracks and Broadway to the West, and Kinderkermack Road to the East. These are heavily trafficked north/south thoroughfares. Downtown is bifurcated by busy Westwood/Washington Ave. running east/west through the CBD.
That intersection, near the Bank of America building and Iron Horse saw 13,600 vehicles moving through it during normal 12 hr workday, back in 2005!
This traffic is overlaid on a 19th Century street grid, undersized for a seemingly ever increasing volume of traffic. During rush hour, with the train in-station, Broadway northbound traffic between Westwood Ave and Jefferson Avenue often backs up.
Bus traffic through our narrow streets can be, in various instances, challenging and dangerous . Idling to make schedule can be noisy and obnoxious.
I am pleased to report NJT officials were very receptive to the Borough’s myriad concerns about resuming bus depot operations at this site.
The agency’s representatives have agreed to WPD’s preferred route through town, eliminating dangerous turns on narrow residential streets.
NJT Routes now originating in Westwood, combined with fewer buses housed here than was the case with Red and Tan, should reduce the incidences of in-town, layovers and their attendant noise levels.
The latter was particularly problematic on Madison Ave between Washington and Irvington. The “tall-ish” hard surfaced building structures lining Madison amplified the sound from idling buses synching up with schedule intervals. The new, agreed upon routes do not use Madison.
NJT is adding stops at Sand Road and Charles St., proximate to the hospital, to better service hospital workers/patients and Westwood residents living between Kinderkermack Road and Main St. on the Emerson border.
They’ve also agreed to pursue noise reducing, aesthetic enhancing, screening between the facility and the adjacent residential neighborhood.
Also, pursuant to our request, NJT will host an in-town job fair to highlight employment opportunities, within the agency, for our residents.
NJT is currently working with Armand Marini, our construction and zoning code officer, to certify occupancy paperwork. They hope to have bus service fully operational, out of the Old Hook Road site, as soon as September 3.
Special thanks to NJT Officials, Paul Wycoff, Dave Colley, Justin Davis, and Jauhara Pressey; and for the Agency’s open-minded willingness to work with us on these improvements.
Thanks to WPD Chief Michael Pontillo, Lt. Rich Antonacci, Councilwoman Erin Collins, and Borough Administrator Durene Ayer for their hard work ensuring the Borough’s pedestrian safety, traffic circulation, and quality of life issues were heard and addressed by NJT.
Ray Arroyo
Westwood Mayor
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *