Canal Arch viewed as golden by many
Friday, February 17, 2006
By KEVIN LECHISKI
The Warren Reporter
Nearly 100 years later, the
Phillipsburg Riverview Organization (PRO) and various other stakeholders are
hoping the same industry that greatly contributed to the demise of the canal
will ultimately prove to be a key ally in bringing about a renaissance to one
of the canal's most significant remains along the
PRO Chairman Mike King is hoping
access issues will be worked out with property owner
According to King, the
restoration and public display of the Arch would not only preserve an important
historical component of the canal, but also enhance local tourism, including
drawing more people to the nearby steam train excursion that departs from
"The Arch would be an attraction unto itself," he said. "It would attract transportation buffs and others interested in canal history, and has a great potential to bolster the local train ride by bringing more people into the site."
King is hoping town officials will further the restoration effort as soon as possible, due to his concerns that a $300,000 federal grant awarded for the project over 10 years ago could become jeopardized. The grant was originally awarded to PRO, but has since been transferred to the town in hopes that the municipality would have better leverage in addressing the restoration and permanent access issues.
King said he is concerned
over the possibility that
Rudy Husband, a
King said potential safety
concerns addressing issues of permanent access must be addressed by the
railroad since many people already regularly go to the site. He is hoping town
officials will step up their efforts in working with
"What you have now is unlimited access," he said. "If the area of the railroad trestles is unsafe, the railroad either needs to prevent people from being there or install netting overhead to catch falling items to make it safe."
The Arch is located at the
western end of the 102-mile canal that cut across Northern New Jersey between
Supporters are hoping to
further the arch restoration through a proposed 22-minute video documentary
that would include images and commentary on the Morris Canal Arch and its
significance to local history, as well as the overall significance of the
Organizers of the documentary are aiming to have the program shown on public television.
The documentary's target
audience would include school classrooms, library programs, community groups,
students of local history and visitors to the steam engine tour in
Staff Writer Kevin Lechiski can be reached at email@example.com or (908) 852-3397.