FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 31, 2012
ESSEX COUNTY EXECUTIVE DIVINCENZO OUTLINES IMPROVEMENTS
TO ENHANCE ACCESS TO ESSEX COUNTY BECKER PARK IN ROSELAND
Roseland, NJ – Essex County Executive Joseph N. DiVincenzo, Jr. announced plans to enhance access to Essex County Becker Park in Roseland on Thursday, May 31st. This is the first improvement project undertaken by the DiVincenzo administration in Essex County Becker Park, which has been left undeveloped since it was acquired by the County in 1969.
“Essex County currently partners with 33 volunteer conservancy groups that give us input about the individual parks they sponsor. Working with the Becker Park Conservancy, we developed this plan to improve the public’s access to the park so more people would be able to enjoy the undeveloped land,” DiVincenzo said. “These relationships have helped the County revitalize our historic Park System and make sure our facilities continue to meet the needs of the community,” he added.
Joining the County Executive at the event were Freeholder Vice President Patricia Sebold, Roseland Mayor John Duthie, Roseland Council members David Jacobs and Richard Leonard, Roseland Police Chief Richard McDonough, Livingston Mayor Steve Santola, Livingston Deputy Mayor Rudy Fernandez and Becker Park Conservancy members Howard Silverberg and Sue Fershing.
The $857,000 project includes the rehabilitation of the Locust Avenue Bridge, which provides primary access into the park. In addition, a water line will be installed across the bridge to bring water to the park, two pavilions will be installed to provide covered seating areas for the public, and benches and trash receptacles will be installed.
Boswell Engineering from South Hackensack was awarded a $142,000 professional contract to design the improvements. Let It Grow from River Edge, NJ, was awarded a publicly bid contract for $857,000 to perform the construction work. The Essex County Department of Public Works is working with the contractors to address questions and keep the project on schedule. The project is being funded with a NJ Green Acres grant received by the Becker Park conservancy and a grant from the Essex County Recreation and Open Space Trust Fund. Work is scheduled to be completed by the fall of 2012.
Essex County Becker Park is 146.73 acres and was once part of the Becker Farm, which used the fields to grow crops and graze dairy cattle. Using County, State and Federal Funds, Essex County purchased the property in 1969 and the land has been undeveloped since then. The park is contiguous with Essex County Riker Hill Art Park and Essex County West Essex Park.