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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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It is as much as we can hope that a private developer, with a record of success in similar projects, will save this building. I remember a previous proposal that involved the JC government paying $40M to historically preserve the building (for what?). In that context the status quo of deterioration (or demolition) was inevitable.

Sure, Barnes & Noble is a bit generic as a bookstore but let's face it - we don't have a bookstore. There was a little used bookstore on Grove but even it is gone. Not that it's hard to take the PATH to WTC and go to Borders, but still...

Furthermore, I don't see my 'hood being a tourist "destination", as unrealistic as it is, being good. A replacement for Uncle Joe's - yes, that's what I wish for.

Quote:

missa wrote:
i agree with the idea that they *should* turn the powerhouse into something exciting culturally. if Cordish develops the property than what we have to look forward to is the renovation of the powerhouse into a structurally sound building, with some unfortunate neon.

what is probably the most important thing is that they are not going to knock down the building. period.

hopefully, the idea of a mixed use property will float, and it will be used somewhat to the effect of southstreet seaport, or similar retail spaces which also offer art shows, concerts, etc.

jersey city as a destination spot would be nice, but i think that you will agree that we have a long way to go before that happens, and this situation, although not the ideal for most of us here, it is alot better than having a crumbling and old, albiet beautiful powerhouse knocked down to make some crappy condos.

btw sorry if i insulted anyone with my "very jersey" comment. i think the "jersey" people understand what i mean...

Posted on: 2006/9/7 3:07
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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i agree with the idea that they *should* turn the powerhouse into something exciting culturally. if Cordish develops the property than what we have to look forward to is the renovation of the powerhouse into a structurally sound building, with some unfortunate neon.

what is probably the most important thing is that they are not going to knock down the building. period.

hopefully, the idea of a mixed use property will float, and it will be used somewhat to the effect of southstreet seaport, or similar retail spaces which also offer art shows, concerts, etc.

jersey city as a destination spot would be nice, but i think that you will agree that we have a long way to go before that happens, and this situation, although not the ideal for most of us here, it is alot better than having a crumbling and old, albiet beautiful powerhouse knocked down to make some crappy condos.

btw sorry if i insulted anyone with my "very jersey" comment. i think the "jersey" people understand what i mean...

Posted on: 2006/9/5 16:34
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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I'd just like to point out that this quote pretty much sums up our entire government:


"The Powerhouse is a priority," said Antonicello. "It will be unique. Five years from now, I see someone coming to the Powerhouse to go to the Barnes and Noble, and have a drink at a bar."




"unique"

Posted on: 2006/9/5 14:43
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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Quote:

ccitizen wrote:
I shoudn't even bother: I've been in the downtown Strand probably at least 100 times. Maybe what you are saying was true in the past prior to Strand's website going live but it's not the case anymore. I've been asked on several occasions if I wanted to put a book on a "want list."


You should know that the MAIN Strand on Broadway, is the largest used bookstore in America, (that is their specialty), and the largest repository of "review copies" of new books in the US.

"Review copies" are books that everyone in the book industry in the US who gets copies of new books takes or sends to the Strand to sell.

Browse the Strand in person or on Online and you may "request" a book and when/if it comes in they will contact you.

They are not setup to "special order" a book as most general bookstores are since Strand's relationship with publishers is that they cherry pick selected titles, while a big general or specialized bookstore, buy more broadly by category.

The Strand has NEVER been the best place to find backlist books (books already published) whether in hardcover or paperback, OR new books generally speaking. For either of those categories any B&N or Borders will eat their lunch as far as selection, but never in price since all review copies at Strand are usually 50% less than list price of publisher.

However, when you are looking for Out of Print, used, university press book, "review copies of selected new books", literary remainders, estate/private libraries, or rare books in their rare book room (outside the main entrance and up the elevator), then the Strand cannot be beat in the US. (NOTE: the exception is the Rare Book Room, which is limited in it's selection and scholarship)

The downtown store while ok, is just that "ok" for what the aforementioned above describes as their principal business.

Having been in the book business for many years as bibliophile, book hound, bookseller, book packager and literary agent, I used to scour the Strand 3 to 5 days a week. There are several of us formally/presently in the book business here at JCList and I doubt any would buy at the downtown Strand unless they worked near it.

The MAIN Strand on Broadway is a destination bookstore for book people throughout the world!

Posted on: 2006/9/5 10:16
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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I shoudn't even bother: I've been in the downtown Strand probably at least 100 times. Maybe what you are saying was true in the past prior to Strand's website going live but it's not the case anymore. I've been asked on several occasions if I wanted to put a book on a "want list."

Posted on: 2006/9/5 4:53
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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In any case, I generally have much better luck finding what I want there than at most Barnes & Nobles, especially the ones outside NYC.

If I want a specific book I can't find, I might order it online too. What's that got to with having a B&N in the Powerhouse?

Posted on: 2006/9/5 4:33
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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Or am I wrong? Because I didn't think it was the kind of store where clerks offer to order you things.

Posted on: 2006/9/5 4:17
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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Uh, you've never been to The Strand, dude.

Posted on: 2006/9/5 4:16
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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I'll take a B&N superstore over Strand and it's ilk anyday. I'm so tired of listening to clerks in Strand asking me "would you like me to order that?" It's 2006, if you don't have it, it's off to Amazon.

Posted on: 2006/9/5 4:12
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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No, you're right though. People use the phrase "suburbanization of New York" for a reason. And it is sad - don't understand why anyone would want to hit B&N when they could go to Shakespeare and Co. or Housing Works or St. Marks, but I guess at least they have good readings at the one in Astor Place, which a JC location probably wouldn't.

Posted on: 2006/9/5 3:56
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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Quote:

JSalt wrote:
What about something that would actually make Jersey City more of a DESTINATION? What about a top-notch performance space and arts center? How about something unique? Something that would actually make New Yorkers want to come HERE?


Now you're just talkin' crazy.

Seriously, though, 'Jersey' thinking, or so you call it, is hardly exclusive to Jersey, and as a Jersey native and loyalist- born and raised - I can probably point out a hundred things off the top of my head that are unique and, in one way or another, culturally valuable, which are ours alone. But that's not my point. My point it - look at Battery Park. Hell, look at Manhattan in general. No shortage of Barnes and Nobles or Applebees or Starbucks there last time I checked. It's a nationwide mentality. And as far as that mentality making inroads into the greater NYC area, and specifically our growing town, well, yeah, that's no doubt helped by some Jersey City folk who just think small. No shortage of those types. But some of it is the symptom of a society that is so overworked or ignorant or both that it simply doesn't care about anything artistic or culturally valuable. It doesn't have time for any of that stuff anyway. For those folks, an Applebees is probably way more attractive than BAM. I dunno. I'm rambling.

Posted on: 2006/9/5 3:35
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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What about something that would actually make Jersey City more of a DESTINATION? What about a top-notch performance space and arts center? How about something unique? Something that would actually make New Yorkers want to come HERE? Don't believe it's possible? Look at what PS1 did for Queens!

Guess that'd be too much to ask for good-old provincial, narrow-visioned Jersey City, the "eat/work/live" city, the city that thinks like a suburb, the young, vibrant city that wants to become like a retirement community.

Posted on: 2006/9/5 3:19
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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healey prays 4 a brewery

Posted on: 2006/9/5 2:25
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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how about a homeless shelter instead or wax museum

Posted on: 2006/9/4 17:15
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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seen route 17 lately?

the stripmall evolving; becoming urbanized.
the stores/retail concepts they are trying to present are not all "jersey" in flavor, but capitalizing on unused space by turning it into a retail/commerce option is totally "jersey". there are so many examples of this, but if you would like me to point out a few i could...

Posted on: 2006/9/4 16:33
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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First as a born and raised Jersey guy (Bergen and Hudson Cty.) I take a little offense to this "its so Jersey" thing. Last time I checked, which was 10 min. ago, there is one ESPN Zone in NYC and 0 in Jersey. There is a Hard Rock in AC however.

What I would like to see at the Powerhouse is something that will reflect the neighborhood that it will be surrounding. Therefore I think it should hold something similar to what is in the Time Warner Building in Columbus Circle. Mid to upscale restaurants and bars, no chains, but named chiefs maybe. A live music space maybe. Some retail, but a book and music store, with some small niche shops. There will be lots of people within spitting, much less walking distance soon enough and they will expect things that are targeted to them and their wallets.

Posted on: 2006/9/4 15:43
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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Sorry if I was unclear -- Yeah I would LOVE to see it as a PS1 or BAM kind of thing! I would love to see so many other things -- I would love to see the Strand Book Store open in a small part of it - The Strand could act as the HUB for a huge yearly Book Fair held all over Downtown Jersey City and Liberty State Park - as with the Chicago's Printers Row or the Miami Book Fair.

Or I would love to see a bunch of REAL "known" galleries with track histories - large PRESS boooks - open in the powerhouse.

I more than anyone would hate to see any frat/tourist bars - ESPN sports bar kind of places, or HARD ROCK CAFE kind of places -- those are REALLY JERSEY!

They also would hurt other bars in Jersey City by making the powerhouse into some kind of de facto Bar Mall and food court -- like the Newport Mall, this Bar Mall will hurt the development of the rest of downtown -- and will just be very JERSEY and not at all NYC!!!!

If they do put fake tourist crap in there (like the South Street Seaport) -- which I hate to say seems likely given where it is and hotels and condos around it, then I really hope THEY put a Barnes and Noble in there at least.

"At least" I can read the magazines.

Posted on: 2006/9/4 14:26

Edited by GrovePath on 2006/9/4 15:11:34
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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Note to jersey journal: do some research and get yr names right it is CORDISH, not kordish.

anywhoo...
this was posted the last time the powerhouse development project was talked about. ladies and gentlemen meet thee cordish developers.

look at what they have done with the baltimore powerhouse project. the city is looking for revenue and job creation, and sadly not a major arts and cultural center, but its fitting for a second-string city, and very, very jersey.

Posted on: 2006/9/4 13:39
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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exactly. a barnes and noble can fit in anywhere; why use such a dramatic, unique building? i was in london last week, and i forgot how much the tate modern reminds me of the powerhouse (or vice versa) until i walked past it again. wishful thinking, but wouldn't it be cool if there was a branch of the MOMA (MOMAJC??) or the Dia inside the powerhouse? another idea i heard tossed around a few years ago was to have a big indoor farmers market/food hall/artisinal products type thing (like along the likes of Borough Market in London if anyone knows what I'm talking about) on part of the ground floor, and residential condos the rest.

barnes and noble is just so, well... jersey.

Posted on: 2006/9/4 12:12
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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I wouldn't even mind a B&N in town all that much, but please, PLEASE don't waste such a cool building on it.

Posted on: 2006/9/4 6:09
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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Yeah -- I hate ESPN and sports bars, but I would like a Barnes and Noble -- but please make it with in two years not five!

I think as far as art -- it will happen west in JC -- it's a little too high end already for anything REAL to happen around there.

I don't blame people for trying to get cheap condos though.

Posted on: 2006/9/3 11:47
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Re: Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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I like the "transit village" concept, but, good god, if Barnes and Noble and ESPN Zone are the best ideas we can come up with, we really don't deserve the "sixth boro" moniker.

Posted on: 2006/9/3 6:30
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Wants Powerhouse to have a Barnes and Noble, and Journal Square to be a "Transit Village"
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Wants development on abandoned city property; more visibility

Ricardo Kaulessar - Hudson Reporter - 09/02/2006

NEW MAN AT REDEVELOPMENT AGENCY – Robert Antonicello was named the new executive director of the Jersey City Redevelopment Agency by Mayor Jerramiah Healy in April.
A city agency charged with redeveloping approximately 75 city properties has a relatively new director.

In April, Robert Antonicello, who used to be a private real estate broker, was named the new executive director of the Jersey City Redevelopment Agency by Mayor Jerramiah Healy.

"What I do here is what I did on the other side the table when working in the private sector," said Antonicello in an interview last week. "I'll be reviewing all the city's redevelopment projects and find out where some of them have been stalled."

The Jersey City Redevelopment Agency is an autonomous agency created in 1949 to revitalize blighted and economically depressed areas in the city to promote economic growth.

The agency designates developers to build projects in these areas, most of which are city-owned property.

Antonicello had previously worked in the private sector for over 20 years as a real estate broker and consultant.

But he had worked for the city's Redevelopment Agency and Planning Department for a short time in the early 1980s after graduating from Rutgers. He has a bachelor's degree from Rutgers University's Newark campus in city planning and urban affairs, and a master's degree from New York University in real estate development.

Antonicello said Mayor Healy got to know him because he had dealt with him previously in the mid 1990s. That was when Healy, as the chief judge of the Jersey City Municipal Court, had to retain Antonicello's services in finding land for a new location for the court, which now sits on Summit Avenue.

"Healy wanted someone in place who understood the intricacies of how development was done and could extract the best value of properties," said Antonicello.

His plans for the agency

In an interview, Antonicello talked about his first 100 days and said he went through all the redevelopment projects the agency had been working upon. He said there at least 75 redevelopment projects under the agency's auspices.

"I am going over projects that are at least a year old and how asking why these projects are not going through," said Antonicello. "In the second 100 days, my plans will be to advance the ball farther down the field."

Among the major projects he will be keeping his eye on are the redevelopment of Journal Square near the PATH station, being done by the Harwood family, and the development of the old Hudson/Manhattan Powerhouse on Washington Boulevard.

Journal Square

Antonicello sees great things for Journal Square, particularly the area near the PATH Station, where there was a dilapidated set of buildings on the verge of collapse until they were torn down early this summer.

In March, the Harwood Family, who has maintained a business in Journal Square for the last 70 years, was designated by the Redevelopment Agency as developers of the area. They had acquired the buildings from the previous owners, the Tawil family. They plan to build two mixed-use high-rise towers, which will include apartments, retail stores and parking. The plans also include a hotel.

"Journal Square is a number one priority," said Antonicello. "The creation of a transit village is something I see can do great things for that part of the city."

The "transit village" is a concept that the state is promoting to encourage homes and businesses around public transit hubs, to reduce traffic and reliance on cars.

The Powerhouse

In July, Baltimore-based developer David Kordish was designated the developer of the Powerhouse, a large boxy building that once provided electricity for the massive Hudson Manhattan railroad (the precursor to the PATH system).

The Jersey City Redevelopment Agency was responsible for designating Kordish.

The Powerhouse lies in the Powerhouse Arts District, a redevelopment zone that runs from Washington Boulevard to Marin Boulevard.

Construction of the original Powerhouse building started in 1906 and was completed in 1908. It is a steel-framed 200,000-square-foot edifice with its 28-inch thick brick walls. But it only operated until 1929 and was abandoned for many years, although the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey still used it as a power station.

There have been efforts since 1999 by the Jersey City Landmarks Conservancy to preserve the building. During that time, Kordish has been negotiating with the city to become the developer. Kordish developed the old Baltimore Power Plant into the ESPN Zone Restaurant and a Barnes and Noble bookstore on the waterfront.

"The Powerhouse is a priority," said Antonicello. "It will be unique. Five years from now, I see someone coming to the Powerhouse to go to the Barnes and Noble, and have a drink at a bar."

How it works

A redevelopment plan is a plan that provides for the reuse or redevelopment of property within a municipality. The Jersey City Planning Dept. designates an area in need of redevelopment then drafts a redevelopment plan.

Then the plan is introduced in front of the Planning Board for their consideration. If the plan is approved, then it goes to the City Council, which introduces the plan at a council meeting where it is read into the record. At the next council meeting, the council does a final vote to either approve or not approve the plan.

The JCRA designates a developer(s) for the redevelopment area.

Making it known

Antonicello said boosting the public image of the agency was needed to make its workings more "transparent" to the public.

Press releases were sent out in July by the agency regarding its board's approval of a developer for the Hudson/Manhattan Powerhouse and of the renovation of a historic home on city-owned property on Monticello Avenue.

The agency has placed signs on various properties across the city letting the public know that it was a project approved by the Jersey City Redevelopment Agency. Antonicello also plans to have a website for the agency by the end of the year.

"The greatness of a city is providing for its residents that you build a great city," said Antonicello. "And that's what I want the public to know that the Redevelopment Agency is doing."

Posted on: 2006/9/3 1:39
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