What I’d Change About Verona

By on August 17, 2016

Verona used to have a trolley on Bloomfield Avenue--and a movie theater.

Verona used to have a trolley on Bloomfield Avenue–and a movie theater.

Verona is a great town. If I didn’t think so I wouldn’t have spent most of my life here (and I certainly wouldn’t have written this. But there are some small things in town that stick my craw. I’m not talking about major things, but minor (perhaps petty) items that get under your skin; things I’d like to change. For me they are (in no particular order):

  • No left turn onto Claremont Avenue from Pompton Avenue (heading north): I understand why it should not be allowed during peak travel times (getting across Pompton Avenue is a nightmare and I shudder to think of the people who get off the #11 bus and need to cross). However, early in the morning (before 6) or late in the evening (after 10), there can be little or no traffic and I don’t see any reason why you shouldn’t be able to make a left turn. (Just as annoying are Google directions that tell me I can make a left onto Pompton Avenue from Martin Road. I don’t think so!) Maybe it’s time to ask Essex County to revisit the Claremont crossing?
  • No movie theater: I know it’s been decades since Verona’s movie theater became an office building, but every time I go past 450 Bloomfield Avenue, I mourn the loss. It’s especially acute since Cedar Grove’s Cinema 23 closed down. I know many of us fondly remember going to the movies as kids. (Does anyone else remember the Disney double features in the summer at Cinema 23?) I do love Caldwell’s Cinema 4, especially with its $6 Tuesdays (you can guess what day of the week my family goes to see movies) and I wish Verona still had one, which brings me to…
  • Empty storefronts: Verona is such a great town, it pains me to see so many vacancies. You can hardly pass by any stretch of Bloomfield Avenue without seeing “for rent” signs in the window. Perhaps pricing and parking are part of the issue. Although Verona has more parking than most people give it credit for (although it may not be right in front on the venue; the lot behind Terry’s is pretty darned big). Thinking about opening a business? Know someone who is looking for a new business location? Think Hillbilly. Think Maroon and White. Think Verona!
  • On the parking topic, why do meters only take quarters? When I’m running in to a shop I don’t need a whole hour/quarter’s worth. Why not a nickel or dime? Or let’s go high tech and pay with an app! We’ve got a great FREE one that reminds us about our recycling, so why not one for parking? Are you a talented app designer? This could be your chance!
  • And finally there’s garbage: There’s not a lot of it on the streets of Verona thanks to many trash cans and recycle cans that line Bloomfield Avenue and are all around our beautiful park, which is probably why any that I do see annoys me all the more. We have the receptacles, please use them.
  • So those are a few things that “get” to me in Verona. Considering all the good things that Verona has to offer (which outnumber the bad), I have to wonder am I crazy or does my list reflect your feelings too?
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  1. Jeff

    August 17, 2016 at 9:26 pm

    I would add to the list the intersection at Bloomfield, Lakeside and Park Place. Since the county “improved” the intersection, traffic has been terrible just about any time of the day. Bloomfield Ave commonly gets backed up all the way to station one on the eastbound lane.

  2. Terry Moore

    August 18, 2016 at 2:58 pm

    Some nice constructive criticism concerning our wonderful town.
    PLEASE, no more dry cleaners, nail salons or Italian ANYTHING (pizza parlors, restaurants, etc.). Nicer, slightly upscale ones, like the Arienne.

    A movie theater-don’t think we need another. Yet the one that was there showed independent movies and festivals (like the very last one on Woody Allen films). Maybe a BYOB policy instead of the outrageous prices and interruptions at the Essex Green theater. Otherwise it’d be more of the same drek that these small town movies have to take.

    How about biking in the park @ certain hours? Early morning or afternoon when people traffic is sparse?

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