The Record: Letters, July 19, 2012
By Murray Weinstock
Revive main asset
Regarding "Builders respond to downtown plan" (Page L-7, July 2):
Francis Reiner, the planner with DMR Architects, said the city already has several characteristics that would draw developers. Not discussed in the article was perhaps the city's most important asset: the Hackensack River and its waterfront.
All over the country, waterfronts are being redeveloped into attractive places for living, shopping and leisure activities. I propose that all the land east of River Street, between the approach to the Midtown Bridge and Anderson Street, be converted to a park. The park could contain docks for fishing, rowboats and kayaks, and there could be a band shell, similar to the one in Ridgewood, with a band playing there on summer evenings — perhaps even a merry-go-round. Making this street even more attractive are the parks within its bounds and across its northern border.
On the west side of River Street, with a view of the park and the Hackensack River, would be the new high-rise buildings. The taxes from the high-rise buildings should offset the lost taxes from the businesses. Furthermore, this would bring more people downtown, which would help support the Main Street businesses.
Imagine living there, overlooking the park and Hackensack River, and being in walking distance of shopping, restaurants, the library, the post office and the bus station. You would hardly need a car. You could walk to work at the courthouse; a shuttle could take you to work at Hackensack University Medical Center or to the city's two commuter train stations.
Any redevelopment plan should include the Hackensack River and its waterfront.