Days after an ally on the city council called for a halt to the Washington Street redesign project in Hoboken, 1st Ward Councilman/mayoral hopeful Mike DeFusco is calling for a special meeting to address concerns such as destroyed sidewalks and tree removal.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“No one would dispute that Washington Street is in desperate need of repair, but the current administration’s handling of this vital project has raised an enormous amount of concern throughout the community,” DeFusco said in a statement.
“Businesses are suffering, quality of life is being disrupted, and most alarmingly there is irreversible damage being done to our city’s character in the removal of trees and destruction of a historic bluestone sidewalk in front of City Hall.”
The upstart councilman goes on to state that the issues of destroying the bluestone and removing trees were not discussed as part of the plan, which was approved last June and didn’t commence until January of this year.
DeFusco also said he had submitted a formal request to Council President Jen Giattino, another mayoral candidate, regarding a special meeting, but she told Hudson County View no one had asked her about such a meeting and she was going to be away most of next week.
4th Ward Councilman Ruben Ramos criticized Mayor Dawn Zimmer over the project earlier this week, claiming curb bump-outs had become a major hindrance to residents and commuters alike.
Zimmer retorted that the curb extensions are necessary safety measure to prevent illegal parking and improve visibility – among other things.
A spokesman for Zimmer’s office did not return an email seeking comment regarding DeFusco’s call for a special meeting.