Makers Mansion Community Planned Around Historic Newark Castle

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At the corner of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard and Court Street in Newark’s Central Ward, a castle towers over the landscape.

Krueger Scott Mansion restoration newark
1890s Exterior Photo via NJ Historical Society

Since 1888, the Krueger-Scott Mansion has sat on a hillside overlooking the city. It was originally the home of Gottfried Krueger, the owner of a local brewing company, who wanted it to “‘outdo’ the home of fellow Newark brewery owner and competitor, Mr. Ballantine,” according to Newark Happening, referring to the Washington Street house that is now part of the Newark Museum. When completed, the mansion contained 26 rooms, six chimneys, and New Jersey’s first residential elevator, according to The New York Times.


Several years after the Krueger family left the property, the mansion became the headquarters of the Scottish Rite organization, and was later the home to Louise Scott, the owner of the Scott College of Beauty Culture who was likely “the first black woman in the city to become a millionaire,” according to The Times. Afterwards, the mansion served area residents as the Scott Civic Center.

Krueger Scott Mansion historic photos newark
Interior Photos via NJ Historical Society

Yet, for the last few decades, the City-owned palace has been abandoned, surrounded by a barbed wire fence, overgrown weeds, and a broken staircase. There was a proposal 25 years ago for the City to renovate the decaying structure and create an African-American cultural center inside, but the plans were canceled and the building has been in a state of disrepair in the years since. In 2011, Preservation New Jersey declared it to be one of New Jersey’s most endangered places. However, the days of the Krueger-Scott Mansion remaining in this condition could soon be numbered.


Krueger Scott Mansion rehabilitation project newark
Photo via Wikimedia Commons

Months after the concept was first announced by the City, details have been revealed for a new proposal that calls for converting both the mansion and the site of the Greater Newark Conservancy’s Court Street Urban Farm adjacent to the property into a new community called ‘The Makers Mansion.’

Krueger Scott Mansion development rendering
Conceptual rendering | Credit: Makerhoods.org

“This project, by far, is one of the sexiest projects out of all of the projects we have going on because of its appeal in meeting the demand and the wave of the future,” said Carmelo G. Garcia, the Executive Vice President and Chief Real Estate Officer of the Newark Community Economic Development Corporation in an interview with Jersey Digs.

Krueger Scott Mansion development site plan
Siteplan | Credit: Makerhoods.org

As part of the proposal, the mansion would be rehabilitated “in a historically respectful and accurate manner,” and could feature rooms named for notable Newark natives. A new neighborhood, called a ‘Makerhood,’ would be constructed behind the building that would feature an urban farm, a plaza, 16 affordable apartments, 50 market-rate apartments, 36 parking spaces, and 16 to 20 shops, including restaurants, a dining facility possibly created in partnership with the Rutgers Food Innovation Center, artist spaces, and possibly a pub called Krueger NanoBrew. This community would include a five-story building, a seven-story building, and a ten-story building.

makerhood development model newark
Makerhood scale model | Credit: Makerhoods.org

The project would be developed by Avi Telyas of Seaview Development, and calls for creating an affordable live/work center for makers, entrepreneurs, and micro-manufacturers that would include a business incubator, co-working space, educational support, and a community event space with a monthly speaker series. According to plans obtained by Jersey Digs, “for a combined $1,800/month an entrepreneur can lease a workspace to conduct a business such as retail, light manufacturing or artistic activities, and occupy an apartment above it for a zero-commute, low-cost operation.” There would be revenue of over $500,000 per year with a net cash flow of $24,390. 85 jobs are expected to be created upon completion of the development.

makershood development newark
Conceptual rendering | Credit: Makerhoods.org

”All the details to it are just fascinating because it’s really game-changing in its concept,” said Garcia, who added that the proposal will go before the Newark Municipal Council on June 21st.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. I do hope this time something actually happens to save this historical building. I taught at Irvington High School in the mid-1980s and took a group of students to see it. Sometime after that it was discovered that the house was stripped of it’s mantels, light fixtures, and anything else that had value in the Antique Market. Too bad. I actually have a Krueger beer bottle!

  2. The idea of renovating the mansion is wonderful. The idea of the new building was almost a good idea. 15 affordable and 50 market rate apartments with ONLY 36 parking spaces is ridiculous. The thought process for most contractors is …most families from that area may not have a vehicle and if so they only have one. Stereo typical and far from the true facts. Currently in that area there is one new low rise apartment building, three townhome communities, one renovated high rise senior apartment building and one low rise apartment building being constructed. Three elementary schools and two high schools. Although the reconstruction in that particular area is definitely on the rise, city officials and contractors need to connect with residents of that community and provide what’s really necessary there. It’s parking! Working in that area for the pass nine years and visiting frequently, it is clearly evident. Therefore, rebuild the mansion. It’s apart of the city’s history. Give total concentration to the residents of that community before constructing another building with lack of factual statistics.

  3. The thought of renovating a piece of Newark’s history would be a beautiful thing for Newark. Makerhoods plans seem viable and hopefully will come to fruition. Being built in 1888 as one of the most opulent homes at its time by a beer baron Gottfried Krueger begins its tale. For 38 years the Krueger family resided in the home. For 30 years, in 1925, the Scottish Rites group took possession of the home, keeping its beauty and adding a beautiful auditorium. It was sold to Louise Scott in 1959. Ms. Scott ran a beauty school and several other businesses out of the Mansion. By doing so, she began sectioning off rooms to accommodate her ventures which ruined some of the original architecture and splendor. After 24 years, in 1982, the city of Newark took over ownership which began the final nail in the destruction of the mansion. 10 years later the city squandered over 5 million dollars in an attempt to reconstruct the mansion to its original glory but efforts failed, which allowed the building to be once again vacant, at which point it was stripped of all its inner luxurious belongings. Now, hopefully, Makerhood Development will do what the City of Newark failed to do and restore the mansion to its original stature. When that happens I hope we keep it as the original name in history – The Krueger Mansion, not the Krueger-Scott or Krueger-Scottish –Scott – Makerhood Mansion. It is so often when we try to alter history and landmarks to honor certain aspects which should not be. When the refurbishment is completed let’s all call it after the original founder and call it just “THE KUEGER MANSION”.

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