Mayor Zimmer to residents on Western Edge redevelopment: ‘Bring it’

Office of the Mayor announces:

Last night the Zimmer Administration officially handed responsibility for the Western Edge Redevelopment Plan to the City Council. 
“The City Council, as the redevelopment agency, has ultimate authority over the redevelopment process, and I thought it was important to clearly mark this transfer by placing the Western Edge resolution on the agenda,” said Mayor Dawn Zimmer.
The Zimmer Administration is fully committed to assisting the Council through a collaborative approach and will make professionals available to assist as needed to further refine the Western Edge Redevelopment Plan with input from the public.
Unlike previous plans, the currently proposed Western Edge Redevelopment Plan includes a guaranteed location for the long-promised community center with pool which must be built before developers can open their buildings. The area occupied by this community center accounts for the difference between the amount of open space in the prior plan and the current plan.
“I believe it is important to finally fulfill the promise of bringing a community center to the residents of Hoboken,” added Mayor Zimmer.
The plan brings balanced development, including much-needed retail and commercial space, to Northwest Hoboken which has seen close to 100% residential development over the past 10 years. In addition, the mixed usage helps reduce the tax burden caused by services required by residential development. Importantly, the plan requires that 5 percent of the space be set aside for incubator office space to support existing businesses within Hoboken and create affordable office space for new startup businesses. The Administration has been in discussions with community members and the Stevens Institute of Technology about potential partnerships and use of such a space.
The Administration, working with the Trust for Public Land, has been in discussions and negotiations for the last year to acquire a large area of land adjacent to the Western Edge for a park. The property known as the Henkel site is owned by Cognis. The City currently has $3 million in funding to acquire the site, and the Administration has applied for an additional $2 million in Green Acres funding. The Administration’s intention has been to develop the Western Edge in concert with the adjacent planned park at the Henkel site. The City was close to an agreement to purchase the site, but because Cognis is now being bought out by another entity, discussions were delayed until the closing of the purchase, scheduled for the end of November. The Trust for Public Land has been in communication with the company acquiring the Henkel site, and they are very receptive to working with City.
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