Boro awards contract for renovations

Park upgrades include grading, sod, parking lot redo, new bulkhead


Staff Writer

RUMSON — After twice going out to bid on a project to renovate Riverside Park, the Borough Council voted last week to award the contract to Precise Construction, Freehold.

The vote was taken at last week’s regular meeting of the council where a letter from Borough Engineer C. Bernard Blum, of T&M Associates, was also presented in which Blum recommended Precise Construction as the lowest responsible bidder.

The bid was in the amount of $709,865, and Blum said that the project should begin by mid-August, with the completion of the grading and sodding to be finished by late November.

Blum said the entire project should be completed by next spring.

Riverside Park has been on the list of borough priorities for quite some time, with the topic arising at council meetings last November and again this past January.

The plan for the park includes adding two new sports fields and maximizing the parking in the lot off Riverside Drive without increasing the size of the lot.

Upgrades would also include a new bulkhead on the western side of the park, and resurfacing all of the fields.

“The fields are 25 to 30 years old,” Councilman John Conklin told the council last fall, “and they have never been rehabilitated.”

The park has between 8-10 acres of usable space, plus wetlands area, according to Blum.

Funding for the park upgrades comes from a portion of a $16 million open space acquisition and recreation fund for similar projects throughout the state. The borough received $500,000 toward this project.

Wardell Avenue resident Todd Herman spoke during the November meeting, voicing his concerns about the increased parking in the lot, which is adjacent to the rear of his property.

The previous version of the plan, which was made public in October, left a 30-foot buffer between Herman’s property and the parking lot for Riverside Park.

The plan that has been accepted by the council, according to Blum, places the buffer between 10-12 feet from Herman’s property.

Conklin said that the parking lot would not be any closer to Herman’s property than it is currently.

Blum said that the plan is to fit the maximum number of cars in the lot, which now holds between about 65 and 70 vehicles.

The new lot will not be paved with asphalt, said Blum, but a porous, environmentally friendly material.