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Archive for the ‘Ocean GRove parking issues’ Category

Broad Street, Red Bank. 2013. Paul Goldfinger photo. ©

 

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger

Red Bank has a difficult parking situation downtown, and this has been a major issue for many years. In an article in today’s Asbury Park Press, the problem in Red Bank is described as “terrible.”

There is constant competition for spaces in the White Street lot which can accommodate 273 vehicles.  Merchants are losing money because shoppers from affluent surrounding towns are reluctant to drive to downtown.  Unlike Asbury, Red Bank has no parking garage.

Parking on White Street in Red Bank by Paul Goldfnger ©

There are 1135 meters there, but they are badly out of date and cannot perform the high tech functions seen in other towns such as Asbury where the price can vary according to the time of day and day of week.   Some merchants want a parking garage, but experts say that garages are out of date.  (Did you hear that CMA??)

Red Bank will embark on its first parking study in 20 years, but the idea that creating more spaces is desirable is not such a good plan; instead better use of existing spaces should be emphasized.

Here are a few quotes from that article which is linked below:

www.app.com/story/news/local/red-bank-middletown-area/red-bank/2018/04/26/downtown-red-bank-parking-study/428009002/

APP:  In a sharp break from the “auto-centric” thinking that turned vast stretches of America’s cities and suburbs into paved parking lots, today’s top parking experts are advising cities from Princeton to Pasadena that the solution to their parking problems isn’t to add more spaces, but rather to better manage the spaces they already have.  

(Thank you Home Groaners for their recently added and  dangerous diagonal spots)

““The old paradigm assumes that parking should be abundant and free at most destinations. It strives to maximize supply and minimize price,” he explained. “The new paradigm strives to provide optimal parking supply and price. It considers too much supply as harmful as too little, and prices that are too low as harmful as those that are too high.”

“And, for that matter, why invest tens of millions of dollars on a new downtown parking garage when in the not-so-distant future your self-driving vehicle will be able to just circle the block or park in a remote lot until you’re ready to be picked up?”

In Ocean Grove, Blogfinger has been stressing that the Groaners are hopelessly mislead in finding new parking spaces, when what we need are parking meters, parking permits, and less cars in town.

We need to abolish all but a few giant events which clog the Grove’s existing parking most of the weekends in season. It’s about time that our parking emphasis should be on the residents here whose quality of life is adversely affected by car glut.

Red Bank’s issues are focused on their downtown.  That is what defines them, but OG should fulfill its destiny and master plan by promoting a residential, historic small town for the future.

COUNT BASIE,   who was born in Red Bank.  With JOE WILLIAMS:

 

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Sackman Enterprises created 98 rental units near the beach in A. Park.  They own other properties in AP including a new condo project and the restored Steinbach building.  They also  own #60 Main Avenue in OG.   (the brick pizza building with high rentals)   Internet photo.

By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.

Here is a link to a post we published last July regarding the relationship between OG and A. Park. It raises some important issues.

OG AP connection

In Ocean Grove the pressure on “our” parking will continue to increase due to the Asbury parkers. And this is on top of other parking concerns such as the Camp Meeting Association’s plans to increase its year round programming, and the ambitious new activities at the Jersey Shore Arts Center which has new year-round events that have made life intermittently difficult over in that west end Grovarian neighborhood, and the JSAC has even more ambitious plans for the future.

And then there is the pressure  (as with the Warrington site) to create multi-unit condominium or hotel units without offering off-street parking. Added to the mixed bag is the  continued large-scale extravaganzas by the Chamber of Commerce which shuts down our streets and crams thousands of tourists for their big events.  They, the Township, and the CMA have done nothing to help residents with the parking situation during these grid-lock megalomaniac events.

Real estate in Asbury Park continues to be hot as millennials*  come into town to be close to the Asburian action. A side effect of that is the growing AP housing demand resulting in real estate spillover to Ocean Grove—–be close to the action while paying less for housing here.  But then we will see rising price pressure in OG.

If you go to any fine restaurant in A. Park you will find well-healed young people enjoying expensive dinners.  This trend will increase, and a large new high-rise building near the ocean will have condominiums, a hotel, stores and offices.

Some condos in AP have doubled  (or more) in value in just a few years,  and resales can bring up to $1 million.  There are quite a few smaller condominium conversions as well as large units all over Asbury-town, especially at their north end.    Of course they have parking problems that keep increasing.   A recent condo project recently took over a parking lot near Wesley Lake.  All of this development impacts Ocean Grove to some extent.  Woe is us!.

And how about the street water runoff into Wesley Lake?  Jack and I visited the Monroe  work site  a few months ago  (below)  and all we saw regarding the Lake’s ecology were a few ironic storm drains along the lake with a carving of a fish on them.

Where is the DEP?   We hear that the DEP plans to get involved in shore lake management, but so far, no news on that front.

Storm sewer on the Asbury side of Wesley Lake. Blogfinger photo. Click to see the ironic fish.

This is the newly built  Monroe which faces Wesley Lake on the AP side. Internet photo.

In addition, Bradley Beach has become hot with higher prices for homes that sold for a lot less not long ago.  This is the Asbury Park effect to the south of OG. And you can buy alcoholic beverages in BB.

It’s interesting that back in the day, when AP  had roaring honky tonk going on, people from BB, Avon and other southern destinations  would walk through OG, heading north on the boards, admire the scenery and the peacefulness of our town, and then proceed as fast as they could to reach the promised land of Asburian hot-times before some Grover calls them sinners.   Now the Asbury Park two-step is back again, and developers want to turn OG into AP South.com.

Some buyers are seeking houses in OG and BB as sources of income for Air B& B and more long range rentals.  From the point of view of OG residents, this is not good news.  This kind of activity can change Ocean Grove significantly.

*Millennials often are highly educated and have good jobs. Now they have saved some money and they are looking for housing around here.  Some condos in AP have doubled their valuations  (and along with it their property taxes.)

The  Pew Research Center will use 1996 as the last birth year for Millennials.    Anyone born between 1981 and 1996 (ages 22-37 in 2018) will be considered a Millennial, and anyone born from 1997 onward will be part of a new generation.

This is an explosive  time for the staid Victorian town of Ocean Grove.  Anyone who lives here, full time or part time or as a vacation destination should be aware.

LIANNE LA HAVAS     from the movie Loving Vincent—-“Starry, Starry Night”

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The Blogfinger cow is covering the Committee meetings and any undder events where he/she can report on fake news.

 

And support the Blofinger cow. Our milk is organic, and contains no methane gas.

 

From the Neptune Township Committee meeting  minutes on January 8.  Only 3 committeemen were present.

REGARDING PERMIT PARKING:  (excerpts of the minutes)

“DR BRANTLEY  stated that he could support moving forward with the permit parking proposal. Parking is a free commodity and the Committee needs to find a way to better manage this commodity. He suggested working with Asbury Park on this issue.”

“COMMITTEEMAN LANE commended Ms. Rizzo for the proposal. He stated that he could not move forward with permits at this time. He is concerned with all the residents. Permits will not decrease the number of people parking in Ocean Grove and then walking to Asbury Park. The Committee will be talking to Asbury Park on this issue.”

“MAYOR WILLIAMS stated that he was a member of the Parking Task Force. There are still unanswered questions about permit parking. There were good comments received on December 21st but there are a lot of questions including eligibility of Neptune Township residents who do not reside in Ocean Grove, how would the permits be handled at Town Hall, and how much staff would be needed.   He recommended not to move forward with the permit parking plan.”

PUBLIC COMMENTS:

“JOAN VENEZIA, 107  Mt. Hermon Way, stated that the parking decision should have been postponed until Ms. Rizzo is present. She asked the Committee how the Township will manage parking and what are the reasons why permit parking will not move forward. The Committee indicated that they would discuss the matter with Asbury Park.”

“Mr. Lane stated that permits would be a hardship to tourism and most do not want permits. Mayor Williams mentioned legal liability and the outstanding issue whether everyone in Neptune Township would be eligible for a permit.”

“BARBARA BURNS, 4 Ocean Avenue, stated that in regards to permit parking, the Committee  provided statements without evidence and no discussion. The Committee needs to get answers to any questions they have and it is not acceptable to give up. Parking is not free, there is a cost in lost time and opportunity. Unanswered questions are not a reason to not go forward. The Mayor stated that the proposal on December 18th was totally different from the proposal that they had for months.”

“Dr. Brantley stated that the Committee will not abandon the idea of looking for solutions. We will talk to Asbury Park and use their expertise”

“RAY DEFARIA, 12  New York Avenue stated the Parking Task Force did a very extensive review. Ocean Grove was founded on inviting people to come, not to keep people out.  The Ocean Grove Homeowners Association, who is supporting permits, has about 200 members but 3100 people live year round in Ocean Grove. The Committee made a hard decision, but a good decision.”

 

Editor’s note: The mayor refers to “eligibility of Neptune Township residents  who do not reside in Ocean Grove.”   This suggests that the Mayor is out of touch with the reason for a permit plan.

And,the opinions put out by Committeeman Lane  that “a permit plan would be a hardship to tourism and most do not want permits” are two unsubstantiated fake news remarks unworthy of a high Township official.

COW MUSIC:

LEWIS LYMON AND THE TEENCHORDS:   “TRA LA LA LA LA”

 

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Fletcher Lake in Ocean Grove.  Part of the “community?” Click to enlarge and see what’s at stake when Ocean Grove policy is commandeered by the CMA and the Township. How about the citizens?    Paul Goldfinger photo.  ©

This post from last August 25 deconstructs a portion of the CMA letter about permit parking which revealed a great deal about how they feel about the town.    Here it is again because of our recent discussions on this subject. Note the comments.

The quote below is from Rev. John DiGiamberardino’s statement to the Neptune Township Committee at their regular meeting on Monday, August 14, 2017, in the Municipal Building. He is the COO of the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association.:

“The OGCMA, founder of the community, has existed for 148 years as the leading organization and tax payer in Ocean Grove seeking the good of the community, residents, and visitors.”

The context of his statement was to object vigorously against the idea of permit parking for OG citizens and to threaten a law suit if the CMA’s demands are not met.

But if you read the CMA quote above carefully, you will see that we need to clarify some of his words and definitions. Words have meaning, and I assume that the Reverend wants us to understand his meaning.

a.  “The OGCMA, founder of the community…..”    What does “community” mean?  He refers to the “community” as being separate from “residents” when he says that “OGCMA seeks the good of the community, residents and visitors,”  so “community” evidently refers to something other than the citizens who live here.

He introduces the OGCMA as the “founder of the community” as if that has some special significance in terms of governance  in this town in 2017.  When the State Supreme Court turned  Ocean Grove over to Neptune in 1980, that left the CMA as being just another group or entity in OG with no legal special influence in the decisions of the Neptune government, such as what to do about parking.

b. ” The leading organization..” Does this mean the most important organization in town?  Does he claim special entitlement because of being “the leading organization?”

c. “The leading taxpayer” seems to refer to the OG entity which  pays the most tax money to Neptune Township. Does he mention this because those who pay the most taxes deserve the most attention or the most influence?     We have residents in this town who pay no property taxes.  Do they have no influence?

d. “148 years”  Does he mention this because he wants to teach us some history or does it mean that the oldest organization in town deserves some special consideration?    Otherwise, why do we need that number?

e.  ” The CMA is seeking the good of the community, residents, and visitors.”  In order to understand this claim,  we need to know the definition of “good.”  It seems to be condescending for the CMA to know what “good” we residents need, and then to demand public policy based on that unique knowledge.

My guess is that the CMA thinks that it has some special advantage over the rest of us that entitles it to apply its  unique influence in getting the Township to make decisions in its favor, such as re-zoning the North End and refusing to consider a permit parking plan.

The CMA threatens a lawsuit over this.  If they think that they are  more important than any other constituency in town, and if the Township agrees with that, then that seems like a potential Constitutional violation  if laws are passed in their favor.  (“Equal justice under the law.”)

Are we wrong?  Are we totally misconstruing what Rev. John said in that statement?   What do you think this means?

And the entire statement by the COO can be found in the article below about political intimidation.

 

Written August 18, 2017,  by Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger

 

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By Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.net

Next-door.com is a social networking site where people share information such as items for sale or inquiries to recommend something, such as where to buy a Murphy bed.  But occasionally, Ocean Grove issues are mentioned, and if the comments are provocative enough, we will bring them over to Blogfinger for your assessment.

One thing that fascinates us at Blogfinger about this website is that the participants must use their real names.  Clearly that is having an inhibitory effect, because the current posts there about the permit parking issue offer information, but the posters will not tell us their opinions.

We know a Grover who posts under a pseudonym on Blogfinger and under his real name at Nextdoor.com   His Blogfinger posts are much more intense and revealing of his views  than what he says under his real name at Nextdoor.com.  And that speaks to the value of allowing anonymous comments on BF.

Below is a post on Nextdoor.com dated Dec. 20, 2017, which interests us.  The poster is Ray DeFaria of Ocean Grove.  This is what he said about the Workshop meeting regarding permit parking in the Grove:

“No decision was made by the Neptune Twp Committee.  They listened to the various concerns on both sides Those against permit parking included former Neptune Mayor Randy Bishop , a long time attorney in Ocean Grove, the head of the Ocean Grove Area Chamber of Commerce,  OGCMA trustees including the current President along with others who raised concern about the negative economic impact Permit Parking will have on Ocean Grove and Neptune.”

But, although Ray DeFaria  doesn’t directly offer his own opinion, he only mentions those who oppose the plan, and he only mentions the heavy hitters who spoke at the meeting.  He does not mention those who were for the plan.  And, although he tells us the titles of these big shots, he does not tell us their names.  So his comment is heavily spun in one direction and tries to impress us with his rogue’s gallery of VIP’s without direct quotes or names.

So, despite those limitations, I was interested in the people/organizations whom Ray says spoke at the meeting.  The list includes the Chamber of Commerce which, up to now, as far as we know, has not expressed how it feels about permit parking (or about any parking issues downtown.)   You would think that they would welcome a parking solution.

And he mentions Randy Bishop, who has a conflict of interest regarding this subject.  The CMA has already expressed its views armed with the threat of a lawsuit against the Township.

Our reporter, Jack Bredin, verified the negativity on the part of these VIP’s which, he said, included Jack Green, who is a realtor and developer and Camp Meeting trustee in town.

But what really interested us is Ray’s report  that all these big shots agree that the permit plan would have a “negative economic impacton Ocean Grove and Neptune!”    (our italics)  Wow!  This is new:  An economic theory as to why permit parking should be defeated.

In other words, all these Grovarian VIP’s with negative opinions on permit parking seem to care little about the problems experienced by the residential community in town.  That is a striking revelation regarding all these pillars of OG society.

As for the economic theory expressed in Ray’s post, it  seems like a far-fetched concept to us,  and Ray’s post did not explain how the dots are being connected.

Will any Blogfinger commenters or naysayers mentioned above weigh in on this economic argument against a permit parking plan for Ocean Grove?  Please explain that argument.

And finally, Ray didn’t say so, but most of the positive comments at the meeting regarding permit parking came from the OGHOA.  So that is a nice change of pace, but we guess they’ll have to change their plan:

BOB DYLAN:  “I Guess I’ll Have to Change My Plan.”

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Internet photo

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Mt. Tabor Way. October, 2017. By Surfer. Special to Blogfinger.

From Suffering Surfer:    During the summer, I occasionally drove high up (to the summit) of Mt. Tabor and saw a reserved spot. It’s not near my home or I would talk to the person about his/her selfishness. If the person is physically handicapped, then he/she should apply for a special place. I took this picture Tuesday at 1030 am. Apparently, the person still reserves a spot on weekdays in October.
This is what I call a VIP: Very Inconsiderate Parker.

 

EDITOR’S NOTE:  Surfer, as Mickey and Sylvia say, “Love is Strange.”   Our parking problems will never be solved with perfection until the number of cars allowed into town are less than the number of parking spaces.  There are solutions, but none that have been welcomed  with enthusiasm.

The only passable possible solution is to give some preference to those of us who live here (full, part-time and renters) using a system of permit parking.  Since all of us who live here are currently using a certain number of spaces,  giving a preferential nod to us will not decrease the number of spaces for others as has been alleged by naysayers.

But we are done entertaining solutions here. Let the Groaners continue to flail around —getting nowhere.

And by the way, for those who allege that we don’t have parking problems here  (Jack Green said on Facebook that there are only about 18 days at peak season when there is trouble parking), the season extends from May through October  (a full 6 months.)

Just last Saturday, October 7, 2017, there was parking gridlock due to the thousands in Asbury for Zombie Day and the Harvest Festival crowd in the Grove.  Even Zombies and pumpkin sellers are on an equal footing with Grovers in seeking parking spaces.

Anyhow, we have been collecting photos from the “parking wars,” so keep them coming, just for the Heck Avenue of it.

—Paul @Blogfinger

support-og-permit-parking

 

MICKEY AND SYLVIA:

 

 

 

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This car at Heck and Benson has been parked there for 4 months. It is missing the rear license plate. Imagine  if that corner house were yours.   The police have not acted. Blogfinger photo 9/28/17

The Township Committee has proposed an ordinance to deal with the problem of warehoused cars in the Grove.  Such vehicles will be impounded if they have been parked in one spot for 30 days or more.

There will be a public hearing on this proposed ordinance at the Oct 5 meeting.

The definition of impounded is “seize and take legal custody of  something, especially a vehicle, goods, or documents because of an infringement of a law or regulation.”

If a car does not have an up-to-date registration, it can currently receive a summons and can be towed.

The car above is missing the rear license plate, but the inspection sticker is up-to-date.  We don’t know if it has a current registration. There are no tickets under the wipers.

There is a warehoused vehicle on Delaware Avenue which the out-of-town owner moves  slightly every once in a while.  We also know that some people store a car on Ocean Avenue to use as a beach locker.

HERE IS ORDINANCE 17-40. There is a second page which has to do with “presumption of abandonment” but this is the main part.         Click on it for easier reading:

PAGE 2 BELOW:

 

 

Paul Goldfinger, Editor @Blogfinger.

GRIMES X BLEACHERS  “Entropy”  (Soundtrack of HBO’s Girls.)

“Calculate the entropy
Running out of energy
A lack of love or empathy
Leave me lonely”

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Grounds for Sculpture, Hamilton Township. You can picnic there, but there is one catch.

 

From Anita Meeks of OG:    “Perfect Day Trip! ART! SCULPTURE! HORTICULTURE!

“Friends of Neptune Library sponsoring bus trip to Grounds for Sculpture.  Tuesday, September 19.

“Trip leaves Neptune Senior Center @ 10 AM (parking there).   1 hr. docent led walking tour there/ lunch on your own.
“Trip returns @ 5PM.  $50 pp  payable to Neptune Library.More info  and reservations call Anita 732-775-1186 “

Blogfinger 101: When a reader submits a comment, there may be a reason why we would want to contact him. It happens fairly often, and it might save an opinion from rejection by clearing up certain issues. Or it might be a suggestion as to how to improve or re-categorize a comment.

But if our commenters refuse to give us their email address, we have no way to communicate.  Your email is never revealed on the blog, and no one ever gets to see it except me, and most of the time we do not even know your name.

This is especially useful when a reader is trying to communicate something controversial.   Thank you, the Management.

MUSIC OF THE WEEK:

YO-YO MA, ENNIO MORRICONE:   “Gabriel’s Oboe” from the album Essential Yo-Yo Ma.   This movie music from The Mission, was composed by world famous Italian composer Ennio Morricone.

The Mission is a  1986 film about 18th century Jesuit priests who try to protect an Indian tribe in a remote region of South America.   Roland Joffé was the director, and the stars were Robert DeNiro, Liam Neeson, and Jeremy Irons.

Morricone’s  music for this film won the Golden Globe for Best Original Score, and the film was nominated for a Best Picture Oscar.

 

 

 

 

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Delaware Avenue, south of Main.Parallel parking is an adventure. Click to Seymour. Blogfinger photo 8/19/17 ©

This is Delaware Avenue,  just south of Main Avenue.  Ironically, there is a funeral home to the right. This street here is very narrow, as are many OG streets.  It’s a sunny Saturday in August, and there is gridlock. About 60 seconds before this photo was taken that parking spot was vacated.  The prior occupant pulled out of the space very slowly.

30 seconds after that, this vehicle showed up.  There was room for parking, but parallel parking in a place like that always feels as if you would hit the car on the other side. You have to have faith in the Lord that you will not do so, and almost always you don’t. This driver must have been sweating this experience.  Behind his car is another car waiting.

But why should parking be a frightening experience and why do we allow our town to overflow with cars—many more than there are spaces?

NJ.com  June 2016:  The Neptune mayor was interviewed about OG parking.  “We have to take a look at the proposals that do what’s best for the greater good,” McMillan said.  Bull!!

This is double talk for “we are not going to seriously look at the OGHOA permit parking proposal.”  This also is fake news because he doesn’t tell us what “greater good” means.  He certainly isn’t giving the residents any advantage.

Parking should not be an absolute democracy.  Permit parking works in many other towns which recognize that their residents are special and need assistance. That is the greater good!    The objections mentioned by the CMA earlier this week (Aug. 2017 ) are bogus.

In that 2016 NJ.com interview, McMillan said, “There’s no easy solution to the parking issue, and the best way to address it is to let the political process play out.”  Is he serious??  We cannot trust the “political process”in Neptune.   Ask them what happened to the revised  HPC guidelines——MIA.

And he said, “We’re not going to run away from the problem.   More gobbledygook!  Look what happened over the ensuing year—-nothing but poppycock. Our local government specializes in poppycock and they should hang a banner to that effect in front of the Mother Ship.

And now, 2017, Mayor Brantley tells the Coaster  (but not the citizens of OG) that permit parking is dead.

Consider Belmar:  In 2015 they closed down the entire town when the number of cars exceeded the number of spaces during a seafood festival.  But the official Belmar stance on parking, as stated by their mayor, is that they place the interests of their residents first.

Their online site says,  “Belmar’s leadership and citizenry always understood that lack of parking is a serious problem here and that increases in the availability of parking must accompany any increased development.”

Do you think the Neptune leadership ever had this thought in mind when it approved condos without parking?

Paul Goldfinger Editor @Blogfinger.net

MARLENE DIETRICH.  She sings this to the Neptune Committee on behalf of OG residents:

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