Collapsed Retaining Wall Pictures

Mount Hope Cemetery Needs Your Help!

In September of 2019, Lambertville’s water company, Suez, set up emergency equipment near the main entrance of Mount Hope Cemetery on South Franklin Street in Lambertville, NJ.  The equipment appears to be a temporary fix in response to a water emergency that caused a torrential release of water from one or two fire hydrants managed by Suez that are located adjacent to the cemetery’s 170-year old retaining wall at the cemetery’s border with South Franklin Street.

According to multiple witnesses who live on South Franklin Street across from the cemetery, there were at least two torrential releases of water from one or both fire hydrants in August and September of 2019. The force of the water being released weakened the cemetery’s 170-year old retaining wall, causing it to collapse over an expanse of approximately 20 feet. This retaining wall had remained intact for more than 170 years, through many hurricanes and other torrential downpours with no damage. This retaining wall holds up back 10-foot high bank, above which many graves are located in close proximity the the wall. As a result of the wall’s collapse, the graves in close proximity to the wall are in serious danger of being compromised! The only places where the retaining wall has collapsed are areas adjacent to or immediately below the two fire hydrants near the cemetery’s main entrance on South Franklin Street.

After this severe damage took place, Suez did not contact the cemetery, despite the obvious damage to the cemetery property. Multiple calls to Suez from the cemetery’s board president were not returned until November 13, when a technician from Suez called and stated that “The cemetery’s wall collapsed years ago. I have much more important things to take care of than this.”

If you are a resident of Lambertville, or if you have family members buried in Mount Hope Cemetery and wish to sign a petition demanding an investigation of this matter by the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, please send a message to: Info@MountHopeCemetery.org.

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The picture above shows Fire Hydrant #1, located just down the hill from the main entrance of Mount Hope Cemetery on South Franklin Street in Lambertville, NJ.  The hydrant has a temporary pipe connected to it that connects with Fire Hydrant #2, located approximately 30 feet down the hill from Fire Hydrant #1.

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The picture above shows Fire Hydrant #2, adjacent to the emergency equipment set up by Suez. Stones from the cemetery’s collapsed stone retaining wall are shown on the right.

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The picture above shows a close-up of Fire Hydrant #2 with the emergency pipe from Fire Hydrant #1 connected to it. Stones from the cemetery’s collapsed retaining wall are shown behind Fire Hydrant #2. The emergency equipment set up by Suez is shown on the right.

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The picture above shows the area downhill from Fire Hydrant #2. Stones from the cemetery’s collapsed retaining wall are shown on the left. Just above the collapsed wall, there are multiple graves close to the bank above the retaining wall that are now in danger of being compromised by the collapse of the retaining wall.

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The picture above shows the area below Fire Hydrant #2, with the water company’s emergency equipment and orange emergency cone shown up the hill. The cemetery’s retaining wall just down the hill from Fire Hydrant #2 has suffered a major collapse.

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The picture above shows the emergency pipe between Fire Hydrants 1 & 2 as it connects to some additional emergency equipment. Stones from the collapsed retaining wall are shown behind the pipe.

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The picture above shows another view of the collapsed wall.

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The picture above shows another view of the collapsed wall.

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The above picture shows the cemetery’s retaining wall in an area about 100 feet down South Franklin Street from Fire Hydrant #1. Further away from the fire hydrants, there is no damage to the retaining wall.

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The picture above shows Fire Hydrant #2 and the emergency equipment set up by Suez.