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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Posted on: 2014/9/8 9:53
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Yvonne wrote:
I wrote that Joan Terrell Paige was the aide to the late Councilwoman Melissa Holloway. Holloway passed away around 2005. Actually, she was an effective councilperson. This letter is from Joan Terrell Paige.

My mistake. Ms. Paige is a moron.

Posted on: 2014/9/4 15:58
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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I wrote that Joan Terrell Paige was the aide to the late Councilwoman Melissa Holloway. Holloway passed away around 2005. Actually, she was an effective councilperson. This letter is from Joan Terrell Paige.

Posted on: 2014/9/4 14:23
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Yvonne wrote:
Joan Terrell Paige, former aide to the late Councilwoman Melissa Holloway, Ward F wrote this:

On September 10, 2014, the Jersey City Council will vote on building a new city hall annex in Ward F on MLK Drive. It will face the HUB. I am requesting you email members of the city council and encourage them to vote NO to a new city hall annex. Ask them instead to vote YES to bring back the stores that were evicted from the HUB by the previous administration. Be aware ... the current mayor and two council members on this council sat on the previous administration while the systematic destruction occured in the HUB. This blight on our community was created by elected officials and staff of the JCRA and Brandywine (the Pennsylvania realty firm that operates the HUB). Why should Brandywine build a new city hall after the mismanagement of the HUB?

The erection of a new city hall annex will provide two offices for the Mayor and other staff and no real benefit to Ward F residents. The HUB offered local shopping capability for our senior community and others. We seniors have no organized voice and we deserve to be treated better. The homes and businesses of long term Black residents were destroyed to make room for the HUB. The HUB can bring rental dollars in to the coffers of the city administration if it is managed properly.

We lost a dress shop, a shoe store, a dollar store (a different one was returned); a laundry mat and several minority owned entrepreneurs were operating businesses there; as well as a community garden operated by the Friends of the Lifers (a program operated for returning prisoners to their homes in Jersey City). A bank operated by Bank of America left and promises to replace it has never materialized.
I say STOP creating blight in our community. Bring back our stores. A NO vote on the building of a new city hall annex will indicate a renewed effort for local residents to have a major say in what happens in our community.


Clearly, Ms. Holloway is a moron. How do stores "return" if there is no one to shop there? Obviously she's not following the logic of placing people that have jobs in the area which may need stores for lunch.

Posted on: 2014/9/4 11:35
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Joan Terrell Paige, former aide to the late Councilwoman Melissa Holloway, Ward F wrote this:

On September 10, 2014, the Jersey City Council will vote on building a new city hall annex in Ward F on MLK Drive. It will face the HUB. I am requesting you email members of the city council and encourage them to vote NO to a new city hall annex. Ask them instead to vote YES to bring back the stores that were evicted from the HUB by the previous administration. Be aware ... the current mayor and two council members on this council sat on the previous administration while the systematic destruction occured in the HUB. This blight on our community was created by elected officials and staff of the JCRA and Brandywine (the Pennsylvania realty firm that operates the HUB). Why should Brandywine build a new city hall after the mismanagement of the HUB?

The erection of a new city hall annex will provide two offices for the Mayor and other staff and no real benefit to Ward F residents. The HUB offered local shopping capability for our senior community and others. We seniors have no organized voice and we deserve to be treated better. The homes and businesses of long term Black residents were destroyed to make room for the HUB. The HUB can bring rental dollars in to the coffers of the city administration if it is managed properly.

We lost a dress shop, a shoe store, a dollar store (a different one was returned); a laundry mat and several minority owned entrepreneurs were operating businesses there; as well as a community garden operated by the Friends of the Lifers (a program operated for returning prisoners to their homes in Jersey City). A bank operated by Bank of America left and promises to replace it has never materialized.
I say STOP creating blight in our community. Bring back our stores. A NO vote on the building of a new city hall annex will indicate a renewed effort for local residents to have a major say in what happens in our community.


Posted on: 2014/9/3 14:48
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Posted on: 2014/9/2 11:24
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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remember this bad deal -

http://www.nj.com/hudson/voices/index ... building_vote_proves.html

Editorial: Building vote proves council is inept
By The Jersey Journal

How much more evidence is needed to show that the people of Jersey City are being ill-served by those members of the City Council whose strings are being pulled by a City Hall administration that cares little for the taxpayer or well-being of its citizens. This is either an intellectually deficient or a sinister bunch in power.

The latest exhibit for the court of public opinion came last week, when the council approved bonding that would allow the city Parking Authority to buy the building that the agency has been renting at 392-394 Central Ave.

The purchase price was a highly questionable, $4.2 million in a down real estate market. Actions of these of elected officials in providing the agency with a go-ahead to buy this building is tantamount to malfeasance.

These self-appointed masters of investment and property acquisition refused to pay the $500 or so for a new appraisal of the building. Instead, they were content to rely on a year 2000 appraisal when the real estate market was booming. Their ineptitude was so blatant that it is easy to suggest their actions may have been planned.

Among those who approved the funding was Councilwoman Nidia Lopez, who has some trouble filing New Jersey tax returns. Another was Councilman Mariano Vega, who has so badly botched his campaign filings with state ELEC that it is difficult to accurately determine who donated to his war chest in May's municipal race. These are people who should not be making decisions with taxpayers' money.

The ordinance was introduced with a 5-4 vote but bond ordinances need six votes for approval on the second reading. Conveniently, it was Vega -- who once frighteningly chaired the city Tax Enhancement Committee -- changed his vote to yes. The councilman, who faces federal corruption charges and refuses to step down claiming he did nothing wrong, said he was convinced by supporters that this was a good deal for the city. He made this explanation with a straight face.

Downtown Councilman Steve Fulop, Ward F Councilwoman Viola Richardson and Councilwoman at large Willie Flood did the right thing by voting against the bond ordinance. Fulop argued for the new appraisal and noted that one of the property owners contributed to the Team (Mayor Jerramiah) Healy slate in this year's election.

Perhaps a review of past real estate deals approved by this City Council is a necessity. This city government cannot be trusted.

Posted on: 2014/8/29 18:24
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Hudson County View: Council President Lavarro speaks against Councilman Yun's proposal on building instead of renting.http://hudsoncountyview.com/council-p ... nnex-blasts-yun-proposal/

Posted on: 2014/8/29 17:17
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Councilman Michael Yun's plan for a city hall annex.

http://youtu.be/ZDV_rM0qPlw

Posted on: 2014/8/27 16:43
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Jersey City Council member proposes alternative plan to City Hall annex

The Jersey Journal By Terrence T. McDonald


Jersey City's plan to build a $20 million City Hall annex on Martin Luther King
Drive will be the focus of a meeting tomorrow evening hosted by one of the plan's opponents.

Michael Yun, who represents the Jersey City Heights on the City Council, is inviting residents to a meeting at 346 Central Ave., beginning at 7 p.m., to discuss the city's plan, which involves leasing the space from a developer at a cost of $45 million over 25 years.

Yun wants the city itself to construct the three-story facility instead of farming out the job to a developer. Yun says his plan would save the city $30 million by using bonds and some of the city's surplus, but city officials say his plan would result in a tax increase.

Posted on: 2014/8/25 8:59
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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I asked that question at the last council meeting, it is redevelopment property, therefore there will be no property taxes paid. We also pay the maintenance.

Posted on: 2014/8/24 11:48
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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are we paying double of what this building would cost to build?

the location is fine. even if Journal Square is better suited, it is a policy decision to attempt to invigorate the HUB area. there is ample bus service and the light rail is adjacent.

the lease agreement provides for only a partial build out and the time frame for occupancy may be greater.

it is not clear as to why there will be no property taxes paid to Jersey City, and the net impact.

some of the news articles (including today's JC Reporter) peg the cost of the building at $15m including contingency, which make the cost of the lease outrageous. the savings in rent from consolidating offices and moving to this location may be completely absorbed. let's get a better idea of the projected cost for this building, if the city were to building it for itself.

I understand the city wants to minimize its immediate bite out of the budget, but we have to start thinking medium and long term and not keep kicking the can down the road.


Posted on: 2014/8/23 11:36
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Its a great idea to move offices to this area. After all, we cant expect private investors to build and operate useful stuff in this area if the city itself has no confidence in the area.

I am in total support of this plan, and hope that the ridiculously unfriendly trailer roundup on Summit Ave. will quickly close down and transition to the Jackson Av location.

Posted on: 2014/8/22 20:55
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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The city could save that expense if it took over some space at that white elephant that is called County Plaza. You also have plenty of parking.

Posted on: 2014/8/22 19:58
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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The city would pay the maintenance and operating expenses anyway.

$22MM to $24MM today is worth more than $45MM over that many years at a very modest rate of return. The city would probably pay more to build it itself and float bonds for it.

Posted on: 2014/8/22 10:00
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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$45m in payments over time
no taxes
city pays own maintenance
redundant offices

why cannot the city just build it ourselves?

has this deal been put out to bid with other developers?

why can't cost projections be more specific?

does not pass the smell test

Posted on: 2014/8/22 9:28
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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$22MM today is worth that much over time. That's the magic of time value of money. It's not an inordinate amount of growth. I would be shamed if I couldn't double the money in my 401k over the course of 25 years.

Posted on: 2014/8/22 5:51
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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I went to the caucus meeting, the developer said it would cost $22 to $24 million. But we will pay $45 million in rent, no property taxes and we will pay the maintenance.

Posted on: 2014/8/21 23:53
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Jersey City would pay $45M in rent over 25 years for proposed City Hall annex

By Terrence T. McDonald | The Jersey Journal
on August 21, 2014 at 3:39 PM

Jersey City would pay a total of $45 million in rent over 25 years for a proposed City Hall annex on Martin Luther King Drive under the terms of a lease that won initial approval from the City Council last night.

The city, which would lease the 60,000-square-foot facility from developer Brandywine, would then have the option to buy the annex for $1. Brandywine would pay for construction, which the city estimates would cost between $14 million and $20 million, while the city would take care of maintenance.

Mayor Steve Fulop has said the proposed three-story annex, which would be located on a currently vacant lot outside the Hub shopping center, is the city's attempt to invest in the heart of the inner city, an area that has struggled economically.

The annex would also allow the city to cut back on rent payments. It pays about $3 million annually to rent space for some of the departments who would move to the annex.

Read more from the Jersey Journal

Resized Image

Posted on: 2014/8/21 23:38
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Yvonne wrote:
Have you been to County Plaza, dtjcview, the former Block Property? The building in underutilized. Some people have offices that are over 1,000 square feet. The building is too large. It has plenty of parking, we should be using that site. It is near Montgomery St. which means it is also close to the bus system.


I want a 1,000 square foot office. You realize that's like 25x40, right? You could play hockey in there.

Posted on: 2014/8/21 10:01
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Why must the public be saddled with $45 million? It comes out of our tax dollars. I am for changing the Hub, but you don't do that by placing all affordable housing in one area, Fulop is right on that point. Secondly, there are many in the area who are not in favor of this. Taxpayers are on the hook for County Plaza and well as the new proposed county courthouse. We are also paying the bills for the new police station in the West District. This is the reason, 2,300 people this year are in lien. It is the bonding debt that has increased. Our gross debt is nearly $900 million. Didn't Fulop promise transparency? So it is OK for Fulop to give a sweetheart deal but let's only pounce on Healy when he was mayor.

Posted on: 2014/8/21 8:55
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Yvonne wrote:
This will be built on city property so no property taxes are paid, the city will spend the money for maintenance, so the developer is off the hook. No taxes plus no maintenance equal sweetheart deal for developer of $45 million dollars.


And the potential for drawing investors and businesses to an area in desparate need of any type of revitalization is not worth the risk? Is it a chance? Yep. But someone needs to take it and I'm glad that someone is willing to take it, win, lose or draw.

EVERYTHING that occurs in Jersey City just bothers you. Since you are the only expert on everything but can't get elected, why don't you move to some little town where your wisdom will overwhelm the local yokels and you will get all the positive reinforcement you so desparately seek.

By the way, I ventured downtown during rush hour last night to check out the pedestrian plaza. It was kind of nice strolling up the street, I hope it catches on. There were a couple of picnic tables set up and a piano player in the middle of the street. It wasn't crowded and those there seemed to enjoy it. AND YOU WILL NEVER GUESS WHAT! I walked all the way down to the end, around Jersey Ave., and there were no traffic jams, no screaming or cursing.

Posted on: 2014/8/21 7:30
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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have you ever been to a city, especially in nj, where the developer doesn't get a sweetheart deal

Posted on: 2014/8/20 23:46
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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This will be built on city property so no property taxes are paid, the city will spend the money for maintenance, so the developer is off the hook. No taxes plus no maintenance equal sweetheart deal for developer of $45 million dollars.

Posted on: 2014/8/20 22:06
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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What you're talking about is urbanization. Yes, the trend has been going that way for years.

I am talking about the implied idea that car-based cities don't exist or are unsustainable/do poorly economically (in response to Yvonne wanting there to be a parking space for every resident, in addition to parking available at all destinations within a city). My point is they do exist (Houston), but it won't work here because too many people want to live here (in a very, very small area), to be close to NYC, and therefore land is at a premium. Free parking doesn't make the owners money. The land is simply too valuable, and we have efficient mass transit that can get you where you need to be without a car. That is not the case in Houston. Period. And yet Houston has one of the strongest economies in the country. So car-based cities can and do prosper.

I am not arguing the trend that cities are moving toward urbanization rather than suburbanization. Not sure how that got confused, but if you look at the previous comments, they are about parking.
Quote:

bodhipooh wrote:
Quote:

jctexan wrote:
I grew up there, so, yeah, I'd live there. But to be fair, that was a time when no one would live downtown so it became a ghost town at night, therefore crime was bad, etc. the only reason to go downtown was for work or a ticket.

The reason the car culture works (despite the article saying the recovery of Houston's economy after the oil crash was due to building buildings :)) is that Houston has tons and tons of space. So they don't have to concentrate in one area. And therefore, they don't have a majority of people trying to get to the same area, as we do here. Houston has 4 or 5 distinct "downtowns" all with a focus on a different economy (medical center, energy corridor, rice university, downtown "downtown", etc) and all with tons of retail/bar/community. It works precisely bc it is so spread out. Would that work here? I would argue (as it seems a lot of people argue) that it wouldn't. My only point is that car culture isn't necessarily bad from an economic standpoint, it just simply can't work here due to the logistics (everyone trying to get into the same place at the same time). I think you and I agree, my point is that car culture and economic prosperity can go hand in hand. But as others have said, not here.


Actually, I think you are still missing the point. Even in Texas, where I lived for many years, and still visit almost monthly, the downtown areas of all major cities are moving towards the same concept as in other places: live, work, play, shop locally. In the San Antonio downtown area, which was deserted and depressing (outside of the River Walk area) they are now putting up lofts that include commercial, retail and restaurants. The same happened in Dallas, and Houston. Austin already had something similar. The goal is to spur development that allows people to live, work and play all within small areas. Of course, in places like Texas, a car is still a necessity, as distances can be daunting and impractical for mass transit, but the downtown areas are being revitalized as it is being done all over the US.

Posted on: 2014/8/20 18:58
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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Hudson County View on the $20 million complex, I wish the true numbers will come out, taxpayers will pay $45 million in rent. But nevertheless, here is the video. http://hudsoncountyview.com/mayor-ful ... osed-mlk-city-hall-annex/

Posted on: 2014/8/20 14:55
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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jctexan wrote:
I grew up there, so, yeah, I'd live there. But to be fair, that was a time when no one would live downtown so it became a ghost town at night, therefore crime was bad, etc. the only reason to go downtown was for work or a ticket.

The reason the car culture works (despite the article saying the recovery of Houston's economy after the oil crash was due to building buildings :)) is that Houston has tons and tons of space. So they don't have to concentrate in one area. And therefore, they don't have a majority of people trying to get to the same area, as we do here. Houston has 4 or 5 distinct "downtowns" all with a focus on a different economy (medical center, energy corridor, rice university, downtown "downtown", etc) and all with tons of retail/bar/community. It works precisely bc it is so spread out. Would that work here? I would argue (as it seems a lot of people argue) that it wouldn't. My only point is that car culture isn't necessarily bad from an economic standpoint, it just simply can't work here due to the logistics (everyone trying to get into the same place at the same time). I think you and I agree, my point is that car culture and economic prosperity can go hand in hand. But as others have said, not here.


Actually, I think you are still missing the point. Even in Texas, where I lived for many years, and still visit almost monthly, the downtown areas of all major cities are moving towards the same concept as in other places: live, work, play, shop locally. In the San Antonio downtown area, which was deserted and depressing (outside of the River Walk area) they are now putting up lofts that include commercial, retail and restaurants. The same happened in Dallas, and Houston. Austin already had something similar. The goal is to spur development that allows people to live, work and play all within small areas. Of course, in places like Texas, a car is still a necessity, as distances can be daunting and impractical for mass transit, but the downtown areas are being revitalized as it is being done all over the US.

Posted on: 2014/8/20 9:53
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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I grew up there, so, yeah, I'd live there. But to be fair, that was a time when no one would live downtown so it became a ghost town at night, therefore crime was bad, etc. the only reason to go downtown was for work or a ticket.

The reason the car culture works (despite the article saying the recovery of Houston's economy after the oil crash was due to building buildings :)) is that Houston has tons and tons of space. So they don't have to concentrate in one area. And therefore, they don't have a majority of people trying to get to the same area, as we do here. Houston has 4 or 5 distinct "downtowns" all with a focus on a different economy (medical center, energy corridor, rice university, downtown "downtown", etc) and all with tons of retail/bar/community. It works precisely bc it is so spread out. Would that work here? I would argue (as it seems a lot of people argue) that it wouldn't. My only point is that car culture isn't necessarily bad from an economic standpoint, it just simply can't work here due to the logistics (everyone trying to get into the same place at the same time). I think you and I agree, my point is that car culture and economic prosperity can go hand in hand. But as others have said, not here.

Posted on: 2014/8/19 19:38
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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That picture you posted is of Houston in the 80s. It has continued to grow and prosper and remained one of the strongest economies in the country (and was all but recession proof). Not sure that was the best city to choose to attack the inherent badness of cars. :)


That pic is from an article about how the city's turnaround after the 80's recession started when they filled in some of that empty space with human-scale development.

Also: it's still not a place I'd want to live. A neighborhood is about more than just having a job.

Posted on: 2014/8/19 18:34
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Re: Jersey City planning $20M City Hall annex on MLK Drive
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That picture you posted is of Houston in the 80s. It has continued to grow and prosper and remained one of the strongest economies in the country (and was all but recession proof). Not sure that was the best city to choose to attack the inherent badness of cars. :)

Posted on: 2014/8/19 18:24
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