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$30M South Orange Avenue Project County's Largest in 'Last Generation'

Two-year plan will enhance safety and drainage along two-mile stretch through South Mountain Reservation.

Essex County officials will announce on Monday plans for a $30 million reconstruction project of South Orange Avenue through the South Mountain Reservation.

The project is the largest the county has undertaken in the "last generation," according to a statement released by Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo's office.

The two-year, federally funded project will flatten the curves in the road, enhance motor vehicle safety and storm drainage, and make the road meet modern traffic design standards over a two-mile stretch of the roadway, according to the county's statement.
David Harrison April 14, 2014 at 11:20 AM
The number of trees felled for this project, which as far as I can tell no taxpayers asked for, is absolutely horrendous. The county continues to chip away at OUR reservation with projects that most of would rather do without. Duck boats that rent for $28- per hour with an overly-lit pavilion and parking lot? Miniature golf? How about leaving the reservation - already under tremendous stress from weather events - as a natural reserve?
neanderer April 14, 2014 at 12:47 PM
federal money means there should have been and EA or EIS completed for the project documenting the environmental impacts of the proposed project. Anybody seen an environmental report for this project?
Tom Pollard April 14, 2014 at 01:36 PM
The trees will grow back. It's a park - not an old-growth forest. The land that's now South Mountain Reservation was thoroughly logged a century ago and everything that's there now is relatively new growth, anyway.
David Harrison April 14, 2014 at 02:20 PM
Really Tom? A century is a long time and trees certainly will not grow where they are replacing forest with pavement. Upon cutting, there is also a huge release of the Co2 that the tree has absorbed within its lifetime.
Adam Altamore April 14, 2014 at 04:05 PM
The project is stupid and wasteful, who thinks up this crap! Build a school, or better yet fix up the schools and parks and recreation fields we have! Was that so hard to think of!!!

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