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Brick to Replace Some Trees Downed in Parkway Project

Residents concerned that lack of trees reduce natural barrier, create safety and property value issues

Trees along the Garden State Parkway in Brick during a construction project. (Patch File Photo)
Trees along the Garden State Parkway in Brick during a construction project. (Patch File Photo)
Brick Township will use a state grant to replace at least some of the trees downed near the Evergreen Woods development as part of the ongoing Garden State Parkway construction project.

The township has received a special waiver from the state to use public grant funding to plant trees on private property in the development, Business Administrator Scott Pezarras said recently.

Normally, under the state's No Net Loss grant program, trees downed in construction projects can be replaced on public land elsewhere using state funding, but the concerns of residents prompted the state to grant an exception to Brick to use the funding to plant trees in Evergreen Woods.

The township council recently accepted the funds from a $511,020 grant to plant trees in the neighborhood and at several township parks, including Windward Beach, Bayside Park, the Drum Point Sports Complex, Angela Hibbard Park, Lake Riviera Park and Colorado Park. The latest grant is in addition to an earlier $675,000 grant the township received under the same program.

The grant funding must be used by July 15, 2018.

"We plan on planting over 4,000 trees in these few years," said Council President Susan Lydecker.

The grant includes provisions to plant both trees and certain large shrubs.

Since construction began on the project to create shoulders and widen lanes on the Garden State Parkway, residents of Evergreen Woods have frequently come to township council meetings to speak about an increase in noise and pollution, as well as what they see as a lessening of their property values.

The township has only minimal influence over the project since it is administered by the state Turnpike Authority, which runs the Parkway.
Michele Spector February 26, 2014 at 06:47 PM
Michele Spector February 26, 2014 at 06:46 PM I have just heard from someone who is fighting for the same thing further south on the parkway that this whole thing is fueled by the NJ DEP. This is something else we must investigate. They are getting away with harming so many communities. Why are so few signing our petition. How else to make a huge statement, but to deliver a thousand or more signatures on one petition: http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/destruction-of-nj-garden
Raptor February 26, 2014 at 09:23 PM
funny, people want traffic improvements on the gsp, people want more lanes and new ramps in the area but want it quiet too. there isn't a wall big enough and no matter how many trees planted will reduce the ambient noise of the traffic. I certainly hope they will plant evergreens and oaks.
KC February 26, 2014 at 11:50 PM
Michele you did a good thing by posting that petition. I signed it because of that. I just want to say that I am all over local media and this is the first time I have seen it. Maybe you should post the site in the boards section of Patch and anywhere else you can think of. I am not directly affected by this, but think it a damn shame. It is just one of many hits our town has incurred at the inept hands of these politicos. Thanks for your post.
Mary Jane K. March 01, 2014 at 05:29 PM
I just got a flat tire from the pot holes because we ran out of money to finish paving the roads. I am so excited that while I'm changing my next flat tire I can admire all the pretty trees around town.

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