The Central Business District of New Jersey’s largest city has seen many of its recent development projects centered around one street in the past few years.
Halsey Street in Downtown Newark, once lined with private parking lots and vacant buildings, now contains many new restaurants like Qdoba, Freetown Cafe, Jimmy John’s, Burger Walla, Cravings, Art Kitchen, and Green Chickpea. Now, even more changes could be coming to areas along the block.
Earlier this year, Rutgers University announced plans for a massive new development near its Newark campus. The Honors Living-Learning Community is proposed for a site that currently contains a Rutgers-Newark parking lot and a building that used to contain a university child care center. The 400-bed facility for undergraduate students will cost approximately $70 million, according to a statement from Rutgers, and will be a 320,000 square foot complex with classrooms, housing, and first-floor retail space.
It will stretch north to south from New Street to Linden Street and east to west from Halsey Street to Washington Street, and will be built around buildings like the Village Hotel and McGovern’s Tavern.
Perkins Eastman will be the designer and RBH Group will be the developer of the project, which the university says is slated for completion in 2018. However, the project has not been heard yet by the Newark Central Planning Board or the Newark Zoning Board of Adjustment.
RBH also developed the recently-completed Teachers Village complex further south on Halsey Street and is the developer for the new Four Corners Millennium Project at the corner of Market and Washington Streets.
Around the corner from Halsey Street, a large vacant building may soon be revitalized. According to Paris Real Estate, 12,000 square feet of retail space is planned for the ground floor and 60 apartments are planned for the upper floors of 37-57 Branford Place, between Halsey and Washington Streets. NJ Parcels records show that property owner, who has not yet applied for city approval of the project, is registered to the same Newark address as Dubrow Management.
The building dates to 1925, and contains 17 storefronts, most of which have been vacant for over a decade. There also used to be office space on the upper floors. According to the National Park Service, 37-57 Branford is “the predecessor of today’s shopping mall”. It is known for the Walt Whitman quote “If you want me again look for me under your bootsoles” that is written on the rooftop. Hobby’s Deli, one of Newark’s oldest buildings, is located across the street.
In addition, the Halston Flats development recently opened in a former Halsey Street office building, and Yoga Mechanics, a suburban chain of yoga studios will open a location on the block. Plus, Whole Foods Market officials tell Jersey Digs that their new location at the Hahne and Co. Building on Halsey Street is expected to open in the late winter months of 2017.
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