On March 15, Mayor Dawn Zimmer of the City of Hoboken, which is a member of Jersey Water Works and whose business administrator, Stephen Marks, serves on the collaborative’s Steering Committee, unveiled the city’s budget for the coming fiscal year. In it, $42 million was set aside for investment in water infrastructure upgrades over the next six years. We asked Jen Gonzalez, a principal planner for the city, to put that number in context.
JWW: How does this amount compare to investments in previous years?
JG: The City of Hoboken owns an aging drinking water infrastructure system that spans approximately 41 linear miles of water mains. The majority of Hoboken’s drinking water system was installed before 1910 and is now reaching the end of its useful life. In the past two plus decades, only $350,000 per year was invested in the system, and as a result only approximately 5 percent of the system has been upgraded.
JWW: Approximately what portion of the system will this investment address?
JG: Over the next six years, the city will invest approximately $42 million to upgrade nearly 20 percent of the city’s water infrastructure system in priority areas.
JWW: Is this part of the city’s 2017 Jersey Water Works commitment?
This advances the city’s 2017 Jersey Water Works commitment to develop a Capital Improvement Plan for the city’s water distribution system by providing a financially sustainable strategy to make continued investments in water infrastructure over the next six years. The city will invest $5 million per year, in addition to the $7 million water main replacement on Washington Street that is currently under way and the $5.2 million already authorized for additional improvements in priority areas.
Photo Credit: @CityofHoboken.