Great Public Spaces: a Few Ideas, Part II

The last several posts have addressed the pressing need for quality public spaces in the rapidly developing and transforming Jersey City. In the past decade, a group of volunteers have rescued a historic nineteenth-century cemetery from abandonment and neglect. This group hopes that the cemetery can be a splendid place for the people of Jersey City.

Sandwiched between the downtown neighborhoods and the newly reignited Journal Square, the Jersey City and Harsimus Cemetery welcomes visitors wanting to pay respects to a departed ancestor or seeking a quiet place wherein to escape the commotion of city life and find a private moment for thought and reflection. Walking along the pathways bordered by ornate obelisks and faded headstones, one easily loses himself or herself in the rustic beauty of the rolling grounds and lush vegetation. The orchestra of birds tweeting, crickets chirping, and rustling leaves drown out the grating noise of automobiles racing down Newark Avenue. The occasional train whistle evokes the image of a lonely, country landscape. Suddenly, the city is far, far away.

(Courtesy of Frank DeMarco and the Jersey City and Harsimus Cemetery).

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