City of Rahway
1 City Hall Plaza
Rahway, NJ 07065
(732) 827-2000




November 21, 2006



RAHWAY, NJ –  Brick pavers that date to the early 20th century and cover a small stretch of East Emerson Avenue in the city’s fourth ward have been preserved thanks to the design of the City Engineer and the cooperation of the contractor performing the city’s annual fall street resurfacing.


The 4” x 4” x 10” paving bricks were manufactured by the Watsontown Brick Company of Watsontown, Pennsylvania, a company that began manufacturing bricks in 1908.  The only other remaining exposed brick street in Rahway is Penn Street, a little-used industrial access dead end for the former Purolator plant on East Hazelwood Avenue.  Until they were covered a few years ago, similar pavers were worn smooth and shiny under the North Jersey Coast Line trestle at the intersection of New Brunswick and East Inman Avenues.


Sections of East Emerson Avenue between Broad and Fulton Streets were in poor condition, having survived decades of metal plow blades and an underground utility replacement that ripped a jagged gash along the curb and was hastily filled in with macadam.


In March the City Council awarded the city’s annual $540,000 resurfacing contract to Stilo Excavation of South Plainfield to resurface nine sections of city streets.  Last month the City’s engineering firm, Bohler Engineering of Warren, worked with the contractor to keep most of the bricks on East Emerson Avenue in place, constructing a concrete frame around the intact bricks and then filling in the spaces between the frame and the curb with hot asphalt.


“There are still a handful of street surfaces that date to the first half of the 20th century,” said Mayor Kennedy, who has personally restored several historic properties in the city, “and a few of them have held up quite well.  Preserving this piece of Rahway history is a small but significant accomplishment that was achieved through the skill and cooperation of our engineers and contractor.  It is a job well done.”


A portion of the project costs was absorbed by a Community Development Block Grant and $135,000 in funding from the New Jersey Department of Transportation



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