The Ridgewood News from Ridgewood, New Jersey on March 17, 1976 · 14
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The Ridgewood News from Ridgewood, New Jersey · 14

Ridgewood, New Jersey
Issue Date:
Wednesday, March 17, 1976
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Page 14 THR POST March 17, 1976 ctFl By GORDON MURPHY (Last of a scries) BERGEN COUNTY -During the dizzying spin of Jazz Age growth in Bergen County, Hackensack Water Co. kept a sober profile while scrambling to match water supply to the voracious demands of new residents and new industries settled west of the Hudson River. The water company built a 250 million gallon reservoir in Oradell in 1902; enlarged its New Milford pumping capacity to 12 million gallons per day that same year; purchased the Spring Valley Water Co. in Rockland County; and survived both the worst storm in Bergen annals while building the Woodcliff Reservoir, and its first rate hike tussle with the new Board of Public Utilities Commissioners in 1917. When Camp Merritt sprung up in Dumont in 1918 as a debarkation site for World War I soldiers bound for France, the works supplied the water needs of the 42,000 soldiers at the facility. Then it was on to enlarging its Oradell Reservoir again, this time to hold 1.6 billion gallons, and to purchasing lands for a River Vale Reservoir. The company had to select its sites quickly and carefully in a calculated gamble future needs would justify capital expenditures at a time when land was becoming a scarce commodity. Two milestones of water purification occurred during the frenzied activity opening a sand filtration plant at New Milford in 1906, and utilizing activated carbon to upgrade purity and palatability of drinking water in the late 1920s. Both techniques set precedents in the field. Expansion, then as now, was fraught with local turbulence. Property owners in the path of Oradell and Woodcliff Lake reservoir expansions often claimed needless uprooting prompted by water suoply growth. In 1902 a dead cat was found in a water supply tank in Carlstadt, causing an uproar foreshadowing the company's new sand filtration plant. Attempts to scale the Palisades and reach potential customers with sufficient pressure to aid firefighting efforts were not always successful during this period. Low pressure problems were graphically illustrated by the 1914 fire at Eclair Moving Picture Co. in Fort Lee, then the movie-making hub of the country. The cinematic disaster was recorded colorfully by The Evening Record of March 20, 1914: "Miserable and insufficient water pressure by the Hackensack Water Co. was the real cause of damage to the plant of the Eclair Moving Picture Co. at Fort Lee yesterday afternoon that will reach to about $500,000 . . Among productions destroyed were 'The Caballero's Way' just completed in three reels by the Arizona Company and valued at $20,000, and one just received from Paris, 'Protea,' in six reels which cost $60,000 to produce . . . Arthur Edison, one of the movie photographers, said, 'The stream of water from the nozzle would not carry six feet abovd us, and had we had even a half decent pressure we could have put the blaze out in minutes." D.W. Griffith, Mack Scnnett, Mary Pickford, Pearl White, Natty Ar-buckle, Norma Talmadgc, Irene Castle, and Warner Oland were a few of the J A.:VilL'..-?X .L..-t, 5 Yr50,000 Mil Warranty Available RAMSEY AUTO IMPORTS ne sudd jl jl i - , A ' ' f - I'i rTiT51 v-..? ?J xivl 3? x I -'tis p t'ln Fl A 4t'TST H! wr f Vertical high speed sieam pump, three stories high, and originally one of several used at New Milford plant of Hackensack Water Co., has been restored completely and city's oldtime stars. While the first feature film, "The Great Train Robbery," was filmed in Paterson, the cliffs over which Pearl White was nearly thrown time and again were the Palisades. Western scenic shots were filmed in Dumont or Tenafly, and the train tracks from which heroines were snatched were in Teaneck or Leonia. The great doorway to baronial castles evident in a multitude of films was none other than the entrance to a Union Hill crematory. The Great Crash of 1929 brought Bergen's boom to a standstill. Customers cut way back on water. New construction stopped entirely. By 1932, industry was operating at half its 1929 level. Mile after mile of developed real estate stood empty, choked with weeds. Even completion of the George Washington Bridge in 1931 failed to provide impetus for expansion until around 1946. World War II spurred Bergen growth again, and the water company was called upon to supply water to Camp Shanks in Orangeburg, N.Y., as it had to Camp Merritt in WW I. After struggling to stay ahead of expansion, the water company weathered vociferous residential protest to build its 20 million gallon DeForest Lake Reservoir in Clarkstown, N.Y. in 1957. By the end of 1950, Hackensack and Spring Valley water companies served a population in SIROCCO NEW CARS USED CARS SERVICE PARTS BODY SHOP 12 Monthi or 12,000 Milei Partt and Labor Guarantee On Vied Can N.J. R-lnipctlon Canttr "AUTHORIZED DEALER SO. MAPLE AVENUE & ROUTE 208 FAIR LAWN (opp. Nabisco) 791-6900 iiirriit - frni - Mli'an Coupe 6793.p0E. BETA FRONT WHEEL DRIVE 5 FORWARD GEARS FULL LEATHER INTERIOR 4 WHEEL INDEPENDENT SUSPENSION INDIVIDUAL DISC BRAKES ALSO AVAILABLE IS 4 VR. SEDAN 9 ly demands facing water co northern New Jersey and Rockland County of about 500,000 with 105,000 customers, ?40 million worth of plant and equipment, 1200 miles of mains, and pumped about 47 million gallons daily. By 1968 it was meeting demands for 99 million gallons per das through 2400 miles of mains. Bergen's boom had resumed and Hackensack Water Co. pieced together a 1255-acre reservoir in River Vale and Old Tappan which completed full development of the Hackensack River as a public water supply according to company officials. The river may be dammed to maximum output, but Bergen continues growing. High-rise development continues along the Palisades as condominiums appear in the north. A huge tat sports complex is projected in the meadowlands, and a race track and football stadium are scheduled to open there this year. The Hackensack Meadowlands District is projecting huge industrial and residential growth; Pascack and Northern Valley development continues. How does Hackensack figure to meet growing demands with its main, source of supply developed to the hilt? Diversion of Passaic River waters through a 14-mile, five-foot pipeline through northwest Bergen to its Oradell reservoir is how the company has put it to the state Water Policy and Supply Council during recent is highlight of tours conducted through the pumping facility. . meetings. Old-time rivals Paterson and the Passac Valley W Commission oppose the plan. Northwest Bergen residents fear installation of the giant pipeline through their highly-developed cor ridor will cause disruption State exDerts are Innkine at the effects such upstream diversion will havd on water quality down by Little Falls; environmentalists and historians voice fears proposed diversion of up to 250 million gallons daily will dry Paterson's national landmark, the Great Falls, to a trickle. Hackensack Water is determined to press ahead and again history is being made in Bergen as water supply and demand hiandate action. Water company officials feel someday Jersey's water needs will be such that water will be pumped north from the state-owned Round Valley Reservoir along the Raritan River, and Hudson River waters will be Judge it by the company that makes it. Marina The tame people who build Jaguars, MGa, Triumphs and i.ana novers duiio the new Marine. Test drive this tough eeonomycarthelirst chance you get. LIYLAND SALES & SERVICE RAMSEY MOTORS 138 N. C.nfrol Av. Ramsay 327-3200. There Is Never a Charge For a Wedding or Engagement Picture In TIIK SUNDAY POST $AVEAT:Th.liANTaADEALER RAMSEY AUTO IMPORTS FIA T 1975 Automatic 131 2 Dr. Cpe. RAMSEY diverted into the Ramapo River where it can be . diverted locally. Diverting the Passaic River at Two Bridges, Wayne, and pumping it north to Wanaque Reservoir and west to Oradell Reservoir, in tandem with additional pum- P'ng capacity along the Ramapo. would meet both present and future needs, ac- cording to the purveyor, DON'T BUY A DATSUN from just anybody . . LARRY PETERS DATSUN RAMSEY", NJ. IS STAFFED WITH QUALIFIED PROFESSIONAL SERVICE MECHANICS ASSURING YOU SATISFACTION LONG AFTER THE SALE. 825-4040 HATCHBACK CSMyJM THE 1976 DATSUN5 are at LARRY PETERS From the thrifty and nifty B-2 1 0 (which averaged a whopping 41 MPO highway, .29 In the city according to EPA teitt .) we havo a complete rang of DAT5UNS. Many sell Datsuni, LARRY PETERS SERVICES, professionally, all that he sellil Performance CountuWe Perform LARRY PETERS DATSUN-PEUGEOT 825 - ROUTE 1 7 (So.) RAMSEY, NEW JERSEY SAVINGS ON 1975 FIATS AUTO IMPORTS It would also, as always, enable Hackensack Water Co. to turn a tidy profit for its stockholders. Plans are also said to be afoot entailing Hackensack purchase of the Ridgewood Water Co. supplying Ridgewood, Glen Rock, Midland Park and Wyckoff residents. Mayors of all four towns, with the exception of Ridge-wood's where a study of the works' capacity and needs Is underway, are opposed to the sale, while Hackensack officials' refuse to comment publicly on it. In 1925, Hackensack Water Co. pumped 27 million gallons of water daily. Last year it pumped 95 million gallons daily to serve a population blown from 350,000 to 900,000. Today the unpretentious giant whose officers toil behind worn brick walls claims an investment of $111.2 million, 1840 miles of main, 12,984 hydrants, 173,-397 patrons served by 453 employes. As long as Hackensack Water Co, had the water, it shaped the face and development of Bergen. Now the Hackensack River is fully dammed and developed, and Bergen's demands for more and more water means Hackensack must turn west, reaching for private works, wells, and ultimately, the Passaic Hiver. As county history has been tied to that of its major purveyor since 1869, this westward, regional grasp must necessarily alter Bergen's future course. The state Water Policy and Supply Council is expected shortly to rule on Hackensack's Two Bridges MAKE A REAL DEAL At LARRY PETERS Complete Bank Financing CHOICE SELECTION 613 Wagon 4040 In U.S. Lutsms $3795. Hurryl Only A Few liftll Tax Additional Dealer Prep. Additional OTHER NEW IN STOCK proposal. When it does, Bergen County's Bicen- tennial tale of water supply mwicm FOR ECONOMY E.P.A. Rating: V-6, Automatic Transmission 17 Miles Per Gal. City 25 Miles Per Gal. Highway DRIVE ONE TODAY! 53 S. BROAD STREET, RIDGEWOOD, N.J. -A&A.A7QO r "JVOr JUST ANOTHER FORD DEALER" '74 MONTI CARLO "londou," hqrdtop, AC, AMPM .t.r.otop., fully powared, gray wr.d Interior and half t M M vinyl reef, 21,143 mil.,. 3 9 O 1 '73 COUGAR NW XR-7, hardtop, outs tram., air cend., PS, fit. PI Saat. 0w.lnrf.. ... ' ' wtapo, blua with white vinyl roof, 39,9 1 4 ml. Rig. $3793 THUNDERBIROS ....2 to chooie from. 1 '73 and 172 Londou,. True luxury at dramatic savlngt. '74 COUGAR Jt-7, fully equipped, air (Mid., $, , PSoati, AMfM Radio, Vinyl reef, many ax. ....Ill A. A t . . . . ' .iw.iii ...Vii. mi. nog. 94TA '73 OLDS CUTLASS Hordtop, Air Cond., PS, Pl, Tlntglaii, whl. covori, body ilde mldg., 34,136 ml. Many ax. trail Rag. Price $3399 '73 PONTIAC GRAN PRIX Mly loaded, AC, P3, Pi, PWlndowc, Pdoor locki, bucket Mat,, con.ole, AMFM Radio, Vinyl roof, 39,946 ml. Reg. $3693. $ 1 A Q r '74 TORINO 4 dr. 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