RED BANK: SUNSET PARK CONCEPT TO DEBUT

The so-called Sunset Park concept plan includes a soccer field, riverfront boardwalk, kayak launch and other amenities. (Click to enlarge.)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank residents will get their first look Monday night at a concept plan for a new park on the town’s long-closed landfill site overlooking the Swimming River.

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RED BANK: RESIDENTS RESIST DUMP-SITE PARK

The audience at the Celestial Lodge Friday night. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

Red Bank residents delivered a message to borough officials Friday night about a new park proposed at the town’s long-closed landfill site: not everyone wants it.

At a town-hall-style meeting held at the Celestial Lodge #36 on Drs. James Parker Boulevard, area residents expressed concerns that the dump might never be made safe for public use.

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RED BANK: PLANTING SEEDS FOR FUTURE PARK

A map showing the extended former landfill site outlined in green. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

We need a skatepark. We need a playgrounds for West Side kids. We need to remember that this is a neighborhood that can’t handle throngs of out-of-town visitors.

Red Bank residents offered those and other suggestions as the process of shaping a new waterfront park out of the former town dump got underway with a community brainstorming session last Thursday night.

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RED BANK: PARK, VACANT SITES ON AGENDA

The council may authorize the creation of a concept plan to turn the former landfill at West Sunset Avenue into a park.  (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

The Red Bank council has a packed agenda for its semimonthly meeting Wednesday night, including possible progress toward a long-dreamed-of new park on the West Side and some bad news for landlords who neglect vacant properties.

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RED BANK: LANDFILL PARK STILL YEARS OFF

ballard 071614Engineer Christine Ballard, above, discusses sampling for toxic substances at the former landfill site. One result of the tests: new warning signs, below. (Above photo by John T. Ward; photo below by Brian Donohue. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

rb crab sign 071514Red Bank is on track with testing for toxic substances at its former landfill and incinerator, but the painstaking process is unlikely to yield new parkland within the next five years, the town’s engineer said Wednesday.

Meantime, one immediate upshot of tests at the 8.6-acre West Side site: new warnings about eating fish and crabs caught from the adjoining Swimming River.

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RED BANK: INCINERATOR SITE TO GET… WHAT?

rb landfill 070714The former landfill on West Sunset Avenue. (Photo by John T. Ward. Click to enlarge)

By JOHN T. WARD

HOT-TOPIC_03After years of environmental remediation, Red Bank’s former landfill is expected to move forward toward conversion to a park beginning this month.

But what’s proposed for the West Sunset Avenue site? Even Mayor Pasquale Menna says he doesn’t yet know.

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UNSTACKING BRICKS

stack-demoDemolition of Red Bank’s defunct incinerator smokestack on West Sunset Avenue finally got underway Monday morning.

A crew using a $3 million claw started tearing away at the 100-foot-tall, 70-year-old brick stack shortly before 10:30a. A hose attached to the boom sprayed water on the structure to keep contaminated dust from blowing over nearby residences.

Barring a wind that might force a stop to the work, contractors expected the job to be completed within a few hours. (Click photo to enlarge)

PARK AT INCINERATOR SITE YEARS AWAY

incinerator-ballard-mennaMayor Pasquale Menna with engineer Christine Ballard of T&M Associates at the incinerator site last Friday. (Click to enlarge)

The work of finally pulverizing Red Bank’s 70-plus-year-old incinerator smokestack to dust could begin as soon as tomorrow.

But replacing the stack and adjoining garbage dump, both long out of service, with a pristine 8.5-acre park overlooking the upper Navesink River may still be years from beginning, borough officials acknowledge.

They don’t know, for starters, if there are drums of waste buried around the incinerator, and will have to x-ray the ground to find out, borough engineer Christin Ballard says.

Even if tests come up clean, though, local officials may face strong objections from neighbors of the West Sunset Avenue property, some of whom envision nothing but trouble at the dead end of their street if a park is created there.

“I’m just afraid that’s going to be a hangout,” Marcelle Seruby, a senior citizen and West Sunset resident for over 50 years, told redbankgreen recently. “I just feel that it’s unsafe for us. The police have enough to do.”

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STACK MAY COME DOWN MONDAY

incinerator-smokestackPlans for the demolition of Red Bank’s idle incinerator stack are moving ahead, with work expected to begin as early as Monday,  borough engineer Christine Ballard tells redbankgreen.

In a press release issued today, Ballard says the 100-foot-tall brick smokestack at the western end of Sunset Avenue is part of a hazardous discharge site remediation leading, possibly, to the creation of a park on the 8.5-acre property.

In addition, the receipt of some $511,000 in grants for the takedown and ground testing afterward means that the project can move ahead “without overly burdening taxpayers.”
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TIME TO PUT THE CHAMPAGNE ON ICE?

incinerator-smokestack

Red Bank officials say they’re now about a month away from tearing down the West Sunset Avenue incinerator stack that has stood as a reminder of the town’s garbage-burning past for several decades.

The town council last night approved a $195,342 contract under which a demolition firm, Nacirema Environmental Services, will remove the stack and the incinerator building at its base.

The Bayonne company won the contact after a sealed-bid process, officials said.

Passage of a resolution approving the deal was cause for cheer among members of the governing body at their bimonthly meeting.

“I’m supposed to bring the champagne” to the demolition, said Mayor Pasquale Menna.

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COUNCIL BIZ, JULY 13, 2009

rb-council-chambers2

Some items from Monday night’s bimonthly meeting of the Red Bank Council:

The council honored this year’s teachers of the year at local schools. They are:

Red Bank Primary School: Karen Gerber

Red Bank Middle School: Damian Medina

Red Bank Regional High: Cassandra Dorn

Red Bank Charter School: Brenda Conni

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