21, 1998 |
Battleship New Jersey Commission is set to choose one of three
cities - Jersey City, Camden or Bayonne - as a permanent museum
location for the USS New Jersey. Of these, Jersey City is by
far the most appropriate, accessible, beautiful and cost-effective
Liberty State Park, with two exits off the
Turnpike, ferries from Manhattan, a nearby PATH station and a
soon-to-open light-rail station, would be the most accessible
site for the battleship. More than 20 million people live within
a half-hour of the site, which helps explain why Liberty State
Park is already the country's most popular state park with more
than 3 million visitors a year.
There is no more beautiful site for the battleship.
Berthing the battleship offshore from Liberty State Park would
allow the New Jersey to be seen by 6 million people daily.
Finally, Liberty State Park is the site that
would cost the least to prepare. The existing visitor infrastructure
is already in place, with nearly 3,000 parking spaces, food and
beverage services, and plenty of recreational space, not to mention
the Liberty Science Center nearby.
Our plan would put the ship at a permanent
berth 500 feet offshore. Visitors would access the ship from
a short bridge built from the terminal to the battleship, just
as a bridge now connects Liberty State Park to Ellis Island.
The Liberty State Park site would require no expensive dredging.
This will save millions of dollars in site-preparation costs.
Our Jersey City site could be made ready even
before the battleship arrives in the Garden State next year,
precluding the need for a temporary site altogether. To this
end, I have pledged $1 million to help prepare the Jersey City
By any measurement, the USS New Jersey should
come to Jersey City. I can think of no more appropriate resting
place for the USS New Jersey than this spectacular location which
does such fitting honor to the memory of all those who made the
ultimate sacrifice so that we may be free!
MAYOR BRET SCHUNDLER