Hoboken: December 2005 Archives

Hoboken's Secret Entrance

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For years I lived in Hoboken without a car. All of my trips back to Philadelphia were on the train from Newark. One year, my sister and brother in law offered me their used 1993 Volvo for about $7,000 and I was free to drive anywhere I wanted at anytime I wanted.

Then I realized what I didn't miss about driving - traffic.

If you are like me, and take frequent trips out of town on the holidays and happen to arrive near the Holland Tunnel around peak driving times, it is always backed up. For years I used to sit in this traffic, and would always wonder if there was a back street way to drive into Hoboken via Jersey City. I was a bit afraid of getting off the highway and making a wrong turn - and ending up in an episode of "COPS", if you know what I mean.

This is what I call the "Secret Entrance" into Hoboken if you are coming from out of town. For years I didn't know about this, and it wasn't until trial and error that I found out about using this route into Hoboken. Maybe you already know about it, and if you do, congratulations! If you don't, well, I hope it serves you well, it easily will shave off a good 10-30 minutes of sitting in traffic at the Holland Tunnel light (depending on traffic).


  1. After you pass exit 14B, heading towards exit 14C, and you pass the final set of tolls, there will be an exit marked "Jersey City / Columbus Drive". Take that exit into Jersey City.

  2. Go down the offramp, and thru the first light. The road will come to a curved "T" section, with traffic directed right or a stop sign for those going left. Follow it to the right onto Columbus Drive. Go to the second light.

  3. At the second light is Monmouth Street. Make a left on to Monmouth.

  4. Follow Monmouth 14 blocks to 14th Street (remember, this is Jersey City's 14th street). Make a right at 14th street. You will notice that just before you get to 14th street, you drive under a few overpasses: it's all the tunnel traffic above you!

  5. At 14th, you make a first left on to Coles St. Ahead of you, there will be the large white building that says "American Self Storage". On Coles, you drive four blocks to 18th street.

  6. On 18th, you make a right (if you can go left here, it would take you to the Storage building) and the first light you come to, a block away, you make a left on to Jersey Avenue.

  7. As soon as you do that - you will see the turn on to Newark Avenue and the large "Welcome to Hoboken" bridge.

There are other ways and other roads, that i'm sure to get comments or emails about - but this is certainly the best way to also avoid any lights and I believe the quickest way, too. I used to take Columbus Drive to Washington Street (Jersey City's Washington Street) and that has a trillion lights and takes far longer than my "secret" route.

I guess it's not a secret anymore!

*Oh technically this is also a trick to bypassing all the traffic waiting at the offramp. Instead of making a left on to Jersey Avenue, you can make a right and the second light make a left to the Holland Tunnel, which will be right in front of you. Unless you like waiting in line on the ramp...

Syrup Smell Coming To Hoboken?


Anyone else notice the syrupy smell on their PATH ride this morning?

Aside from the normal smells of urine, rat hair and too much cologne, I could easily smell a sweet smell, much like 121505.jpg Mrs. Butterworth herself was sitting next to me.

It started as soon as I sat down on the train in Hoboken and continued the whole time to 33rd street.

There has already been reports in the last couple of weeks about that odd syrup smell. I noticed it weeks ago, across the water in Hoboken.

I asked a few people on the train if they smelled syrup and they all had the same abashed reaction and sheepishly agreed with me.

Anyone have any idea what it could be?

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This page is a archive of entries in the Hoboken category from December 2005.

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