Connolly & Hickey 

Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal
Ledgewood, New Jersey
Client: Township of Roxbury
Grants: Morris County Historic Preservation Trust Fund

Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal

Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal of Elizabeth Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal
Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal of Elizabeth Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal  
(click on image for larger view)
Brief Historical Overview:
The Morris Canal, constructed between 1825 and 1831, was a technological innovation for its time. It traveled 102 miles from Phillipsburg to Jersey City and had a cumulative rise and fall of 1,674 feet. One of the canal's greatest technological achievements was its use of inclined planes to overcome the large elevation changes. Inclined Plane 2 East, the second plane located east of Lake Hopatcong, had a vertical rise of 80 feet. Although traffic on the Morris Canal had diminished by the 1890s, the canal was not officially abandoned until 1922. Upon its abandonment, the State of New Jersey systematically drained the canal and dismantled many of the buildings and structures that were used for the functioning of the planes and locks. Much of what was the canal route is either in ruin, has been removed from the landscape due to development, or is in some other manner unrecognizable as a remnant of the canal. Inclined Plane 2 East serves as one of the exceptions, it is one of the four best-preserved planes on the overall Canal. The Morris Canal was listed on the New Jersey and National Registers of Historic Places in 1973 and 1974 respectively.

Scope of Services:
For the Township of Roxbury, Connolly & Hickey evaluated the existing conditions of Inclined Plane 2 East of the Morris Canal in Ledgewood which exhibited deleterious conditions in its masonry due to prolonged and extensive moisture infiltration. The turbine pit of the powerhouse foundation had been opened to weathering for over twenty years which had caused the archway of the tailrace tunnel to displace and be in danger of collapse. In addition, the foundation for the powerhouse was unsafe to the public while located in a well-utilized public park. The project included addressing both issues of life-safety and water infiltration. The solution was to install grates over the existing openings to allow the public to look into the turbine pit and to install a shed structure over the openings to limit the amount of water infiltration into the pit. The second element of the work was to restore the tailrace tunnel opening including underpinning both sides of the tunnel, rebuilding the masonry arch and the in-kind replacement of shattered stone masonry. The design work was undertaken in two phases; the first was to study the existing conditions and make recommendations for repair to the Township followed by the preparation of design and contract documents including administration of the contract during construction.

< Previous Next >

Connolly & Hickey  l   P.O. Box 1726  l   Cranford, New Jersey 07016  l   info@chhistoricalarchitects.com  l   973-746-4911   facebook