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Thursday, August 11, 2005Past Issues - S | M | T | W | T | F | S
 
South Jersey

July 21, 1998

Jersey City's plea

The 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 location.

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 site.

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
Jersey City



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