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Hackensack, NJ |

For more than 60 years, Alfred and Mary Sanzari were devoted to the city of Hackensack and had a deep passion for improving the community and the lives of its residents. On June 11, a public garden built by Alfred Sanzari Enterprises to honor the couples’ memory was dedicated to the city.

Located at the corner of Main and Essex streets adjacent to the firm’s Court Plaza office complex, the garden was conceived last year by David Sanzari, president and CEO of Alfred Sanzari Enterprises, as a lasting tribute to his parents. More than 200 people attended the dedication ceremony, highlighting Sanzari’s legacy to the community.

“Nineteen months ago, the opportunity arose to acquire this land and develop it as a beautiful garden at one of the gateways to the city of Hackensack – a city that my parents loved,” said Sanzari. “The Sanzari family is extremely proud to name this garden in their memory. We feel blessed for the opportunity to do this for the city that Alfred and Mary Sanzari called home.”

The garden was envisioned by Sanzari as a place for Court Plaza’s tenants, area professionals and members of the community to relax and enjoy nature. The space is consistent with Hackensack’s Main Street Rehabilitation Plan, which is intended to transform the city’s downtown into a walkable, livable and sustainable community.

“In studying successful downtowns, one of the key characteristics frequently mentioned is ‘open space.’ Simply put, great downtowns have interesting places where people can walk, think, congregate and exchange ideas,” said Jerry Lombardo, chairman of the Hackensack Upper Main Alliance. “This garden is destined to become one of Hackensack’s new meeting places and will afford future generations the opportunity to share the legacy of the Sanzari family.”

Landscape architect Brad Meumann of Meumann Associates designed the 10,000-square-foot site which features a fountain, brick and stone pathways and walls, benches and decorative lighting, all surrounded by lush plantings. Oversized stone steps and a bronze plaque inscribed with “Because of You” mark the garden’s entrance. Evergreen varieties provide interest during the winter months, and in the summer, seasonal flowers, perennials, shrubs and other foliage enhance the garden’s aesthetic. It is situated in a hub of corporate activity across from the Bergen County Courthouse.

“This social and economic addition to the landscape of Hackensack is very special and is more than I ever envisioned when the idea was first presented to me,” added Stephen Lo Iacono, Hackensack’s city manager. “With everything the city is currently doing to rehabilitate the downtown area, we could not have asked for an asset that is more beautiful, or more fitting, for this location.”