Jersey City, Seafaring Town

This trip East Suzi and I stayed in a hotel in Jersey City, my old home town.  The hotel was right on the PATH Tube to New York and the light rail that runs along the Jersey City, Hoboken waterfront and takes us to ferry boats (many made in Sitka including the Jersey City) that carry us across the Hudson.  The hotel is near where my Aunt Janice lives and solved the parking problem I usually have when I visit her.  Jersey City is completely different from when I was a kid.  Buildings soaring to 60 stories rise on the Hudson providing back office space for companies like Goldman Sachs and skyline view condos.  Parks, that used to be rail yards, have the Statue of Liberty’s back (mail address used to be 1 Communipaw Ave, Jersey City) and Ellis Island (part of the island is in Jersey City, part in New York).   Exchange Place has a pier thrusting out into the Hudson with great views of the New York skyline.  It hosts a different ethnic festival each weekend.  Historic brown stones along Jersey Avenue are restored.   The ferries and Path Tube make Jersey City more convenient to the financial district and midtown than many flats uptown and they are, for the time being, less expensive.   Jersey City, in combination with the World Trade Center right across the river, in a way reminds me of Dubai or Doha.  Both have huge modern buildings rising, with giant cranes slowly swinging on the skyline.  Jersey City used to be a busy port.  The port facilities are now in Newark and Elizabeth next to Newark Airport where there is much more land for staging containers and where rail lines do not have to navigate the waters around the peninsula on which Jersey City sits.  The loss of the docks, warehouses, rail yards, and military munitions port at Caven and Black Tom Points has actually brought Jersey City closer to the water.  Now parks, walkways, piers and a light rail allow people to enjoy the waterfront.  Ferries carry people across the water to the World Trade Center, Midtown and Wall Street and excursion boats call at Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty from Jersey City.  You don’t have to go to New York to visit those sights now.   There is even a golf course with views of the Statue and Skyline.  Several marinas house small boats and the harbor is full of sail on nice weekends.

 

 

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