Rider University Begins Work on New Westminster Parking Lot

Trees have been cut down to prepare for a new parking lot at Rider University's Westminster Choir College. Photo by Steve Hiltner.

Rider University has begun work on a controversial new parking lot at Westminster Choir College. The lot was opposed by neighbors on Linden Lane, who said a previous parking lot project at the school resulted in their backyards flooding. The newest parking lot will be directly behind their properties.

The residents protested the parking lot plan at meetings of the Princeton Regional Planning Board, and even filed a lawsuit trying to stop the project. The lawsuit was funded by Eleanor Lewis, a lawyer and activist who lived on Linden Lane and died in late 2010 after a long battle with ovarian cancer. School officials argued the campus has an urgent need for more parking.

The residents’ suit was unsuccessful and work has started. Trees have been cut down to make way for the lot, large drainage pipes and supplies are arriving, and a new fence has been added around the area.

Planet Princeton contributor Steve Hiltner is documenting the parking lot installation on his website, Princeton Primer.

“It seemed to me that the field was better suited to become a wetland to catch the surrounding runoff, and the last thing the world needs in the age of climate change is another parking lot,” writes Hiltner.  Click to read more and see Hiltner’s photos.