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  • Sylvia Schwartz

Rebuild by Design's Southern Barrier

Members of our Task Force, along with many other Hoboken residents and stakeholders, have attended the public sessions about the barriers needed to protect our City from flooding and are very concerned about the latest development concerning the southern barrier.

The DEP is at a critical juncture of making a decision between two alternative locations for the southern barrier wall in the Rebuild by Design plan.

• Option 1 is to locate the barrier south of the approved Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan. Locating the barrier at this location, which is on lands owned by NJ Transit, would protect this future development from flooding and storm surges.

• Option 2 is along Observer Highway and would not protect this redevelopment project from future flooding and storm surges.

We are concerned that the DEP may favor Option 2 for expediency and that they will be making their final decision in the coming weeks. We believe that is is short- sighted for the following the reasons:

  1. When the future redevelopment project is built another costly wall will be needed to protect those residents and businesses from potential flooding.

  2. Option 2 is more expensive than Option1 by at least $14MM.

  3. Option 2 puts a visual barrier of up to 11 feet directly across from established Hoboken neighborhoods and historical buildings.

  4. Option 2 isolates the approved redevelopment from the rest of Hoboken by blocking the planned through streets and crosswalks.

As both our Mayor and City Council have pointed out, Option 2 ignores the nine years that went into finalizing the Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan. This project, as the Mayor has pointed out, would benefit the State of New Jersey in the form of job creation (e.g., short and long-term construction) and taxes (e.g., from new tenants). To ignore the amount of time and money that has already been put into the Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan is inexplicable.

Option 1 is the only option that would guarantee protecting the Hoboken Yard Redevelopment Plan.


1) A letter stating our viewpoint was sent to the NJ Governor Philip Murphy with copies to appropriate government officials.

2) Hoboken City Council passed a resolution supporting Option 1 on April 4th, 2018.

3) "Hoboken Officials Come Together in Support of Option 1" article in the Hudson County View (8/16/18).

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