The Mile Square City is slated to acquire almost three acres of property they hope to turn into parks as part of an agreement with a local company, who in exchange will redevelop a block of Observer Highway.
During their February 3 meeting, Hoboken’s city council approved a deal that should end longstanding litigation with Ironstate Development. The lengthy dispute was triggered around a 1.4-acre pier at 15th Street and Sinatra Drive upon which the company wished to build a 78-unit project called The Monarch that would consist of two 11-story towers.
The proposal has been tied up in litigation since the early part of the last decade, but a settlement that would shelve The Monarch plans was reached in 2019. Under that deal, the city would receive title to the 15th Street pier “as is” plus a $500,000 payment from Ironstate toward improvements at the property.
The latest settlement approved by the council doesn’t change the details regarding the pier, but additionally includes the transfer of another 1.4 -acre plot at 800 Monroe Street. Ironstate will be turning over that property to Hoboken under the deal, which essentially tables a proposal we reported on early last year that involved a 10-story building with 186 rental units.
In exchange, the city will remit control of their current Department of Public Works Garage site to Ironstate. The company will be permitted to develop a new 165-foot-tall building at the block-long property, which can also include 4,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial retail space and parking for residents. The settlement requires 11% of the building’s units to be set aside as affordable housing, slightly higher than the city’s 10% standard.
Ironstate will not be required to build the city a new municipal garage at the site under the new deal, which was a requirement before the settlement was approved. The company instead will be contributing $1 million toward a temporary DPW garage in a northwest Hoboken location to be determined later.
“This deal is a win-win-win for Hoboken,” said Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla in a statement. “Not only will this newly revised settlement preserve and protect our waterfront from development, it also adds almost 1.5 acres of public, open space in West Hoboken that would have otherwise been developed as a residential building.”
Hoboken and Ironstate now have until September under the pact to negotiate a Redevelopment Agreement, which will hammer out details regarding the DPW property. The city and Ironstate will additionally be conducting an environmental review of the 800 Monroe Street parcel, which was long used for manufacturing by the Levolor Blind Company and has historical contamination that was still being remediated as recently as last year.
Hoboken will also be looking at sites to play host to the temporary DPW garage, with a city-owned parcel across from the future Northwest Park named as a possibility in the settlement. Further down the line, a permanent garage will need to be constructed somewhere at the city’s expense per terms of the approved agreement.