BREAKING: Weehawken to build walls to keep hurricanes out; mayor reacts to Hoboken's plan
Mar 22, 2013 | 5805 views | 9 9 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend | print

WEEHAWKEN -- Hoboken isn't the only Hudson County town considering building walls to save itself from flooding during hurricanes.

The township of Weehawken submitted a $12 million application to the Federal Emergency Management Authority (FEMA) Friday to construct two flood defense walls around the Shades neighborhood and along Boulevard East to protect the low-lying parts of town against future Hurricane Sandy-like storm surges, said Mayor Richard Turner this week.

The township’s application was formulated as part of a joint effort with the North Hudson Sewerage Authority (NHSA) to protect the Shades and NHSA’s 18th street pump station.

The application would see the construction of two separate walls. The first, a permanent, concrete reinforced structure that is planned to be somewhere from seven to ten feet tall, will extend eastward from the Palisades cliffs along the Hudson Bergen Light Rail tracks as far as Boulevard East.

The second wall, which is described as “deployable” because it only takes action in the event of a storm surge, will run perpendicular to the first, along Boulevard East through the 19th Street intersection, stopping just north of the basketball court there.

Mayor Richard Turner did not say whether he’d spoken to Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer, who proposed a similar plan for her town, about the proposal, but he did say that Weehawken’s design does keep open the possibility of collaborating with Hoboken in the future.

Following Zimmer’s proposal, the Sierra Club issued a press release blasting her floodwalls, saying that if she was to go ahead with her plan, a storm surge deflected from Hoboken could result in massive consequences for neighboring towns. But Turner expressed skepticism at the notion.

“The Hudson River basin is enormous, any water that can’t get through our walls will most likely just go back into the river,” he said. “I don’t think we’ll be threatening other towns with our plan.”

For more on this story, see the Weehawken Reporter this weekend, or come back to hudsonreporter.com starting Sunday and scroll down to Weehawken News.

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prsm
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April 12, 2013
IVANS

afriad of what? did someone express fear of something? maybe i missed it. there was some derision and disgust for the shades but no fear. should there be something to fear?

let me answer that for you...yes, there is something to fear, fear of your property's values further plummeting due to the condition of the streets, surrounding vacant, industrial buildings, chemical infused soil, fear of future generations of freaks that will inheriting a dilapidated sink hole

i heard there was a massive fire in the shades last week. maybe turner was just trying to get a campfire going
prsm
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April 03, 2013
'theuglyshades', i thank you for your agreement. i have also seen some of the things you mention,including the MANNEQUINS, and piles of garbage everywhere. you forgot to mention, however, the families of stray cats that wander around near waste. but most importantly, you forgot the mention the homeless people who live in the woods no more than 50 yards from this repulsive shanty-town (as you so appropriately coined). it is the shanty-town within the shanty-town.

IVANS, i suggest you review your declaration of the mayor and his "humanitarianism", you couldn't be further from the truth. i do not know him, but based on his actions and "plans", he is not a humanitarian. no "humanitarian" mayor would allow the residents of his beloved town to live among homeless squatters who defecate where they squat(up in the woods right behind the shades), or near literal piles of filth and garbage found near those vacant lots that surround the whole neighborhood. he also wouldn't allow potenially disease carrying stray and wild cats, beavers and dogs to scavenge and live freely throughout every street of the shades. nor would a humanitarian allow the same people to live among the clearly insane who place multiple mannequins on their front lawns 365 days a year.

the mayor is a humanitarian because he will gladly take taxpayers money to build a wall around around some part of earth that couldn't be saved by even jesus parting the waters? ivans, you sound like you work for the mayors office. you should get another job. oh and i do not write blogs. i comment on them. educate yourself on the difference.

the shades is a sinkhole literally and figuratively.

Ivans
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April 08, 2013
Yes, it is true. There are beavers and homeless people building dams and pan handling in the streets. Wild dogs hold weekly poker games and I'm sure one of you have seen the rabid platypus with a spiked collar walking around.

Clearly I can't be the first person to bring your ignorance and paranoia to light. What are you guys so afraid of? The Shades will not hurt you. Easy on the mushrooms guys and have fun replying to blogs. hehe
prsm
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March 23, 2013
have the engineers who submitted this plan ever stuck their finger in a stream of water before? what happens when you do that? the water goes around your finger and meets again very close behind your finger. a 4 block by 4 block wall will serve as the finger and the hypothetical flood waters will actually end up causing more damage due to the concentrated force of the "flood". hey if i was the mayor i guess i'd want to get rid of that neighborhood too. the only people that live there are redneck freaks and i'm pretty sure there were previous plans to turn "the shades" into a new entrance to some unidentified nj transit mess.
Ivans
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March 23, 2013
Dear prsm,

All due respect, but you obviously have no idea what you're writing about. You actually took the time to write this blog however you possess no knowledge of Weehawken, the Shades, Mayor Turner, NJ Transit or physics.

The people who live in the Shades are very diverse. We as a community consist of many different cultures and ethnicities. Some are blue collar workers and some are white collar workers and one feels superior to their neighbor. There is one thing that we all have in common and that is a sense of community. We all work together down in the shades and help each other out. The meaning of “community” has long been forgotten in many cities across the USA. However, you won’t find a closer-knit neighborhood than “the Shades” of Weehawken. The people here have been living in the same houses for several generations and are the most generous, genuine, and caring people I know. If you need to throw blanket statements on people you should spend time with those people first and get to know them. After awhile you might end up calling them “the salt of the earth” instead of “rednecks” .

Mayor Turner is a true humanitarian and would give you the shirt off his back if he thought you needed it. He has the community’s best interest in mind with every decision that he makes. No mayor could have prepared Weehawken for a 500 year storm like Sandy. However, I believe Mayor Richard Turner stepped up to the plate and did a tremendous job helping the community get through a life-changing catastrophic event. Try being the “man in the arena” for awhile before cowardly blasting his name on the internet with no real knowledge of him and his town.

Regarding your vast knowledge of “fingers in water”, I think it might be best to leave the engineering plans to the engineers. If you spend as must time studying as you do writing blogs regarding subjects matters you blatantly know nothing about, you might be an engineer one day.

But like said earlier, all due respect to you.

NotYourSteppingStone
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March 24, 2013
I have to agree with Ivans on this issue. Calling people Rednecks is not any part of this issue and is out of place here. Besides, what’s wrong with rednecks? Some of my best friends are rednecks. This country was built by the blood sweat and tears of rednecks. The issue is flooding and building this wall is a bad idea as I stated in my initial comment due to hydraulic properties.
Ivans
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March 24, 2013
As per my initial comment. I meant to say "Some are blue collar workers, some are white collar workers and NO one feels superior to their neighbor." There is a real sense of comradery here.

theuglyshades
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April 02, 2013


PRSM I'm going to have to agree with you. The mayors idea of building this wall is just a way to spend tax payers money. This neighborhood should have been washed away during sandy, it would have been doing Weehawken a favor, protecting it would be useless. The mayor could buy all those people out of their homes and be spending the same amount as building a wall. As far as rednecks go, I'm going to have to agree on that as well. I have driven through and you see manikins on some ones front lawn dressed up for each and every holiday, people walking pitbulls all over, houses that look like that are about to crumble, shoes hanging from telephone lines, and trash all over the place. I really think the town needs to do something about this "shanty town" inside Weehawken. Good thing the "shades" is in it's own little discreet area or else it would be more of an embarrassment to Weehawken.
NotYourSteppingStone
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March 22, 2013
In regard to the Turner response to the Sierra Club charge, Mr. Turner clearly has no concept of hydraulic dynamics, so allow me to explain it to him. As he states “The Hudson River basin is enormous, any water that can’t get through our walls will most likely just go back into the river…”

Firstly Mr. Turner, the water will not go back into the river, as it never had the opportunity to leave it, due to you magical wall. Having set even that most basic of facts straight, now try to follow this fact. Water is a thing we call in physics a liquid. Yes water, a fascinating thing can also take other forms, vapor and ice.

But for sake of this discussion we will stay on topic with the liquid form. Water has an interesting property; it always seeks the path of lowest resistance. That is why rivers tend to flow through valleys and not over mountain tops. So rather than staying in that enormous river basin it will simply and very quickly seek the shortest path to the lowest area, whatever that area is water will find it.



What happens when people build in areas that tend to flood during severe weather is God’s way of saying you built in the wrong place. I cannot blame those people for building there though what with all those great views of the river and N.Y.C. But when you build a stupid ten foot high wall to keep a storm that happens once every 80 or 90 years out guess you can kiss the view goodbye.