Citing “significant public interest,” the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJ DEP) has postponed a planned open house at Liberty State Park in Jersey City until a date to be determined.
By John Heinis/Hudson County View
“Due to significant public interest in the Liberty State Park Revitalization Program, the open house scheduled for Thursday, March 23 will be postponed to a date later this spring to provide more advanced notice and ensure maximum public participation,” the agency tweeted this afternoon.
The meeting was highly anticipated after NJ DEP Commissioner Shawn LaTourette said on a virtual media call last week that the Caven Point section of the park would remain untouched, with a stadium, concert venue, and sports complex off the table.
The open house was also set to reveal the state’s comprehensive active recreation plans for about 61 acres of land.
Bob Hurley, president of People’s Park Foundation that has sought some of the aforementioned amenities, said they are glad the NJ DEP has delayed the meeting.
“While we are pleased that there is now consensus that a cleaned up and revitalized Liberty State Park will include new athletic fields for active recreation, the plan unveiled last week by the DEP is far from where it needs to be,” he said in a statement.
“We are grateful to all the members of the Jersey City and surrounding community who have made their voices heard in this process. It is our hope that the DEP will use this extra time to listen to those voices and people’s demands for an inclusive, accessible Liberty State Park that has something for everyone to enjoy and meets the needs of the community.”
Gov. Phil Murphy (D) signed the Liberty State Park Conservation, Recreation, and Community Inclusion Act in June, which allows a 23-member task force to determine how to spend $50 million from the NJ DEP on active recreation and other park improvements – as well as potential commercialization.
The governor has not yet weighed in on what he would improvements/changes he would like to see made at the park.