Author Topic: Our horrible streets, roads and highways  (Read 306 times)

Offline Victor E Sasson

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Our horrible streets, roads and highways
« on: June 17, 2019, 09:12:43 AM »
Here is the contradiction of living in Bergen County and New Jersey: We pay some of the highest property taxes in the nation, yet our streets, roads and highways are either crumbling or long overdue for an expansion, as in the case of the Garden State Parkway in northern New Jersey.

In Hackensack, many of our streets are in third-world condition, especially if they are owned by Bergen County, which rips us off in another way: Tens of millions of dollars in property, including courthouses and administrative buildings, are tax exempt, shifting the tax burden to home and business owners. Then, to add insult to injury, the county refuses to maintain portions of Summit and Prospect avenues, but merely patches them repeatedly and plugs potholes, reducing them to bumpy cow tracks.

At the City Council work session on June 11, the city manager read off a list of streets that will be paved this year. After 30 years of total neglect, my block of Euclid Avenue, between Prospect and Summit, will finally be paved. When I leave my garage, I have to drive under 15 mph over numerous patches and potholes repairs near Prospect to avoid hard hits to the suspension. Going up the hill toward Summit, the story is the same.

I asked about the conversion of Main Street to 2-way traffic and was told that project has been postponed to next year.

But no relief is in sight for the congestion at intersections that lack turn lanes, including Passaic Avenue at Summit Avenue and Passaic at First Street, because the county refuses to install them, even with its power of eminent domaine. I've actually heard a City Council member say in effect, "We can't force the county to use its power of eminent domaine." Probably not, but the city can demand concessions in this area and others as givebacks in return for all of that tax exempt property and the burden they place on both city services and long-suffering local property tax payers.

Why do city and county officials treat us this way? Probably because they can get away with it, given the legions of apathetic voters in Hackensack -- so many sheep begging officials to slaughter their quality of life.

These officials, some more arrogant than others, know the only way to reach them outside of the ballot box is to go to a meeting and grab 3 minutes of their time to sound off and express outrage at the status quo, something few of us do, and I don't blame them. At the work session I attended, I had to wait about an hour to talk after a presentation of a proposed $50 million YMCA in Johnson Park, and negative comments from more than a half-dozen residents.

What taxpayers need are ombudsmen for the city and county who can listen to such complaints and get them to the right official for consideration and possible action.

When I planned a night out this past Friday, all of this came to mind:

http://thesassonreport.blogspot.com/2019/06/a-massive-traffic-jam-ruined-our-night.html




Offline Victor E Sasson

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Re: Our horrible streets, roads and highways
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2019, 09:57:10 AM »
I met a friend for lunch in Montclair last week, and found the streets in that tony community no better than we have in Hackensack. Rough, potholed, frequently patched pavement is a rash that is spreading around northern New Jersey. In Englewood, the number of sunken manholes is astounding, and I find a lot of them on county owned streets like Grand and Engle Streets. Instead of driving down a street, you have to slalom.

 

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