River Road

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Anonymous's picture

The recent discussion of the name of River Road prompts me to ask if anyone knows if this strip of potholes and rough pavement is scheduled for repaving. Needless to say it would be a great thing for cyclist. Could someone who is a New Jersey resident attempt to find out, or suggest to the proper authorities that this would be an extremely popular and politically smart thing to do?

Anonymous's picture
Richard Rosenthal (not verified)
A long love song to River Road & diatribe against its overseers.

"Tom No Last Name has hit upon one of the recurring subjects that accounts for my continual dyspepsia.

According to Lynn Pearson, administrator of the Palisades Interstate Park Commission in Alpine, NJ (I write that out as I do in the event you're of a mind to write), in a conversation as recent as last Saturday, repaving the ruptured roadway ""...is not a very high priority.""

This is the theme song she and others have sung to me for years. What is evidently of a higher priority is providing new cars for its officers with frequency pleasing to them.

In fact, from time to time, Pearson et al. make noises about barring us on River Rd. because drivers get grumpy having to slow down or wsait to pass us!

(Did you know there was a time when we weren't able to ride on River Rd.? Seems it was more important that boaters we able to put their boats in the water unimpeded by the likes of us. Charlie Komanoff was a lead voice in opening the road to us fulltime...in exchange for which we became obliged to wear helmets on the road and gave up biking up/down that fabulous serpentine road connecting it with the end of Hudson Terrace. (If you dare to get ticketed -- as I once was -- it IS a fabulous, however short, climb, or, for those who prefer descending, a descent.)

To my way of thinking, the 8 miles of that road are as pretty a ride as I know in the U.S., and that includes the Big Sur. You've got waterfalls, wild flowers, overhead, shading, trees that carry the fragrance of lilac and honey suckle, the gorgeous river right off one side, the stolid, primeval Palisade right off your other hand, a wonderful absence of cars, some nifty uphills...and, alas, crappy, crappy, CRAPPY pavement.

Alas, we simply don't form a constituency the PIPC gives a damn about.


Anonymous's picture
Cheryl S. (not verified)
River Road paving and a new tree down

In a conversation with Hans Hasney last year I was informed that the southern section or River Road (hot dog truck entrance to first circle)would be repaved (I'm assuming by the Port Authority) once the bridge painting project is completed. This was negotiated as a condition of the heavy machinery using the road during the painting project.

BTW, people, lookout! I was there this afternoon between thunderstorms and just missed getting hit by a falling tree. The tree extends the full length of the road and had many limbs hanging off - probably won't be passable until at least late in the day tomorrow. It is located between the southernmost circle and the Englewood Boat Basin.

Anonymous's picture
Fixer (not verified)
Can't have everything.

"I've been riding it since the days when it was only legally open to cyclists on Sunday mornings. It's always been rough, but that's part of it's ""rustic charm"", in my opinion.

Besides, even if resurfaced, those first couple of miles would get chewed up again pretty quickly with all the run off and rock falls from the cliffs."

Anonymous's picture
E.T. O'Shrdluatzky (not verified)
Paving: a moral

"Despite complaints from drivers that they have to slow down for cyclists, River Road gets very little automobile traffic, which is why the PIPC (do you pronounce that pipik?) can lower its priority for repaving the bumpy parts.

Another famous and long unpaved stretch was the bike path along Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn. It was a weed and bump festival for about 25 years, during which fewer and fewer cyclists used the accursed thing.

Let that be a lesson for all who would ban automobile traffic from Central Park. Once there is a marked reduction in motorists' complaints about the paving, the high poobahs stop using their budget to lay fresh asphalt, and put their resources someplace else.

If you want a ride through Central Park to feel (physically) like a ride up River Road, just get the cars banned. The noise from cyclists is usually negligible, compared to the audibility of thousands of motorists, all writing their legislators and threatening to sue for axel and shock absorber damage.

As the saying in my home country goes, ""An enraged horde of citizens gets the most grease. A squeaky wheel usually gets only misinformed mice.""

Your Pal,

cycling trips