This photo, which I took this past November, looking east from City Place at The Promenade, captures Edgewater, NJ, at a landscape crossroads. To the upper right are older dwellings, hugging the cliff tops that offer a magnificent vista across the Hudson River; to the left, the newer residences, often high-rise, that have arisen over the past couple of decades, catering to a far more affluent population.
I guess this area means something to me for the most personal of reasons. It wasn’t simply that, over 40 years ago, a long-gone industrial plant employed my father and brothers for a time. But a number of my high school friends, from a similar blue-collar background as mine, lived here.
I am glad that this river town managed to rescue itself when industry left virtually en masse several decades ago. At the same time, I fear that something’s been lost in the reinvention: CNNMoney.com, after all, not too long ago, ranked Edgewater #4 among 10 places in the U.S. where the young and affluent are abundant. How much room is left now for people like my friends and their families?