A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Aberdeen Matawan Train Station Parking Turns the Corner

The Matawan and Aberdeen municipal governments have procrastinated so long on their plans to renovate the train station area that events have finally overtaken them. The Independent says that NJ Transit is choosing a company to standardize their parking offerings at many of their train stations, including the Aberdeen-Matawan Station. This could throw a serious wrench in -- well, in whatever sort of plans the municipalities couldn't ever seem to get off the ground for oh so many years. Oh, my. Someone recently commented here about the SeaWalk campaign promise finally being met, albeit a little late.  This campaign promise looks to be going down in flames.

Alas, I suppose the NJ Transit initiative means an end to an era of super cheap parking ($40/mo?!) for holders of undervalued and poorly controlled train station parking permits. I can get a parking permit at Edison if and when I'm willing to pay their fees and put up with their ornery management, but there has been no monthly municipal parking available at Aberdeen, my neighborhood station, for years. It's been frustrating, no unlike trying to get NFL season tickets when they are owned by corporations or remain in families for generations.

I frankly don't think a company could handle the parking policy any worse. And they certainly couldn't make that neglected, mercenary zone of lined pavement look any worse than it already does.


  1. 1) There is no longer any waitlist in Aberdeen for parking permits at the train station. It disappeared when NJ Transit hiked its rates a whopping 50%. I walked into town hall and got a parking pass two months ago, no problem.

    2) NJ Transit isn't taking over its parking lots to "standardize operations." They're doing it to usurp revenue that now goes to municipalities, who currently manage the NJ Transit-owned lots.

    3) NJ Transit's money-grab will decimate the revenue Matawan receives from currently operating the tran station. Aberdeen looks to be in better shape, but still stands to lose money I'm sure.

    4) The towns' redevelopment plans were always dependent on NJ Transit from the start, because NJ Transit owns the parking lots, not the towns. This development likely will have a private company build the parking decks that the towns previously proposed. In reality, NJ Transit's move to take over the lots may jumpstart the reedevelopment plans, not harm them.

    5) The lots will probably not be taken care of by a private company as well as they were maintained by the towns' DPWs because of overhead costs, etc. Also, the towns will lose control over the ticket revenue and maintenance of the lots.

    6) You're right, the parking fees will almost certainly rise substantially if a private company is taking over the lots and trying to make money on their operation. I don't see how it won't cost more.

    7) NJ Transit sucks. They've sucked forever. And, now with their state funding cut, they will continue to suck into the future.

  2. Well said. Hopefully the state will come in and clean up the area around the train station, improve the roads, and make more parking available. Lord knows these two towns just couldn't figure out what the heck to do with that area. What a disappointment that's been. Transit village? Yeah right!

  3. Aberdeen and Matawan have been squabbling over control of the project for nearly twenty years. An article in The Independent in January of this year says the two municipalities went to court to fight over the selection of a developer. The courts allowed for two developers, one for each town, but then the two plans didn't match well enough to suit Matawan. Bickering, bickering, bickering. I don't doubt that NJT sat back and sighed. Certainly their customers would benefit from a better parking arrangement, so this idea that NJT stalled is a dog that doesn't hunt. I've been commuting from Matawan train station for over thirty years, so two month of carefree access to parking permits doesn't make up for my inconvenience. The stupidity isn't at NJT's feet, my anonymous friend.

  4. Transit has already attempted to up the fee by almost 50% in Matawan. They were not able to do it annually due to the bills already being sent out. Look out to the people that pay quarterly.