MAIN MAN: Hoboken Introduces Superintendent to Oversee Municipal New Water System
Hoboken announced the hiring of Robert Smith as the Superintendent of the City’s new Water System.
After unanimous approval of the agreement last March, the City of Hoboken officially entered into its new contract with SUEZ Water as of July 1, which left Hoboken with a new public water utility to be managed by the City—supposedly generating $33 million over the next 15 years specifically for water infrastructure upgrades.
“I’m pleased to welcome Robert as Hoboken’s new Superintendent of our water system,” said Mayor Ravi Bhalla. “He has the experience and knowledge to oversee our multi-million dollar water main replacement project. I look forward to working with him as we proactively upgrade Hoboken’s infrastructure and improve the quality of life for residents.”
Mayor Bhalla and the City of Hoboken welcome Robert Smith as new Superintendent of City’s water system. Mr. Smith will oversee Hoboken’s water system with new SUEZ contract w/ $33M invested over 15 years. By 2034, 18% of Hob’s water mains will be replaced https://t.co/pceD7SkKWB pic.twitter.com/klQGWygeH3
— City of Hoboken (@CityofHoboken) October 1, 2019
Smith comes to Hoboken with over 27 years of managerial experience in the water and wastewater field, most recently serving as the Director of Water and Sewer Utilities for the Borough of Sayreville, New Jersey.
“I am proud and honored to be named the new Water Superintendent here in the City of Hoboken,” said Smith. “I am looking forward to serving the citizens of Hoboken to the best of my abilities, ensuring that they receive the highest quality of water and service possible.”
In the wake of chronic and crippling water main breaks, resulting from and increased demand on aging infrastructure, Hoboken and SUEZ avoided a protracted legal battle by agreeing to the new terms of service.
Smith’s salary will be fully funded through the water utility, at no taxpayer expense—according the the City of Hoboken. He will be the only full-time employee of the water utility.
That said, Smith has his work cut out for him, as the City of Hoboken begins replacing a water main system that dates back to the Grover Cleveland Administration.
Indeed! @PeterGleick Check out the date on this water pipe fixture from Hoboken: timestamp 1897! @UnitedWaterNJ pic.twitter.com/1BhQErel9S
— SUEZ North America (@SUEZ_NA) August 16, 2013
The work is scheduled to take place over the autumn, winter (?!?) and spring months, concluding in Spring of 2020.
Here is the … ahem… “tentative” work schedule for this initial phase:
- 1st Segment: Monroe St – 8th St to 11th St (Fall 2019)
- 2nd Segment: Garden St – Observer Hwy to 2nd St (Fall 2019)
- 3rd Segment: Bloomfield St – 2nd St to 4th St (Fall 2019/Winter 2020)
- 4th Segment: Garden St – 3rd St to 5th St (Winter 2020)
- 5th Segment: Jefferson St – 8th St to 9th St (Winter 2020)
- 6th Segment: Jefferson St – 10th St to 11th St (Winter 2020)
- 7th Segment: Monroe St – 3rd St to 4th St (Winter/Spring 2020)
- 8th Segment: Garden St – 12th St to 14th St (Spring 2020)