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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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As I was walking home today, I started thinking why people are looking at the 15 stories for this project any differently from the 15+ story buildings on Greene St, which also bound Morris and Sussex streets. These buildings also are directly adjacent to "historic 3/4 story brownstones and wood frame buildings" and dwarf these structures.


Posted on: 2014/9/24 16:39
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Quote:

RUinHamiltonPark wrote:
15 stories is not high.

Do people realize we live in the 2nd, soon to be first, biggest city in NJ, directly across from the biggest city in America?

The "anti-development" crowd wants all the amenities of Jersey City and the character of Mendham.

No one walking down the street is even going to notice. This is not terribly far from the towers around Exchange and Grove.

I'm sure though Whole Foods, Trader Joes, and lord know who else is just chomping at the bit to develop in a place where most current residents have an attitude against any kind of addition of residents.

Oh, and in before someone mentions a stressed park or an overcrowded PATH train.

Don't like it, we have this magical place here in New Jersey called the suburbs. Towns of 3 people with town councils where someone tries to build a shed and 50 neighbors show up and cry crocodile tears. So many of our JC residents would feel at home. What are you waiting for?


+10

Posted on: 2014/9/24 15:01
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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If you don't like high rise buildings why do u live dtjc? I left because of that very reason. DTJC back n the early 90's resembled other parts of city. 2 and 3 story apt houses and row houses.

I am not a fan of tall buildings I prefer looking at the sky than buildings. However, I knew better than complain on this board about it, dtjc is and will continue to be filled with affordable high rises, and soon Journal Square will be the same way.

Posted on: 2014/9/24 13:36
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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15 stories is not high.

Do people realize we live in the 2nd, soon to be first, biggest city in NJ, directly across from the biggest city in America?

The "anti-development" crowd wants all the amenities of Jersey City and the character of Mendham.

No one walking down the street is even going to notice. This is not terribly far from the towers around Exchange and Grove.

I'm sure though Whole Foods, Trader Joes, and lord know who else is just chomping at the bit to develop in a place where most current residents have an attitude against any kind of addition of residents.

Oh, and in before someone mentions a stressed park or an overcrowded PATH train.

Don't like it, we have this magical place here in New Jersey called the suburbs. Towns of 3 people with town councils where someone tries to build a shed and 50 neighbors show up and cry crocodile tears. So many of our JC residents would feel at home. What are you waiting for?

Posted on: 2014/9/24 13:30
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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jcman420 wrote:
I'm not arguing that there should be no development on Van Vorst St. What I have a problem with is a *fifteen-story* tower as opposed to a six-story building. Such a giant tower is totally out-of-character for the neighborhood. There is a reason that there's a 6-story max to begin with-- it's an historic district. Exceptions to the height restriction should be exceedingly rare.


Agreed.

The proposed 15 story building would be at the end of Sussex, a street that is lined only with historic 3/4 story brownstones and wood frame buildings.

A 15 story building would dwarf the existing structures.

And even if thinking that a 15 story building would be a good idea for the neighborhood, the concessions offered by the developer are paltry compared to the additional profit from the units in those additional 7-8 floors.

A much better bargain could be had.

Posted on: 2014/9/24 13:03
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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This project is being done by Fields Development of Hoboken. Mayor Fulop lives in one of their buildings. These guys are preferred developer with Steven as the were with Healy. So much for change. When are you going to realize all zoning is for sale. The improvements they are proposing are what they would normally have to do in NY to do a project. Here they play the shell game and get what they want. Say what you want about the suburbs, but they wouldn't tolerate these absurdities.

Posted on: 2014/9/23 21:40
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Maise wrote:
Was anyone able to make it to the meeting?



I went, but it wasn't the actual council meeting, it was the caucus they hold before each meeting. The actual council meeting is tonight at 6:30.

Also, from what I gathered, there was some issue with the original ordinance and the plan is to table it and introduce a first reading of a new version. It all seemed to fall around some technicality, because when the council members asked why they couldn't just vote no on the original, the city clerk told them they would have to wait on a later date to do so.

Posted on: 2014/9/23 9:21
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Was anyone able to make it to the meeting?

Posted on: 2014/9/23 8:08
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Objections to height usually have to do with the added density, and/or how the new taller building relate to the height of the other buildings around it proportion wise. There are probably other reasons that can come up but these are some of the frequent reasons.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 22:40
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Quote:

jcman420 wrote:
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T-Bird wrote:
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07310 wrote:

I always find it amusing the way people panic at the thought of change.


And I am equally amused when people make grand, sweeping statements with a small percentage of the details.


Well-said. It's as if anyone who doesn't have an "anything goes" attitude toward development in their neighborhood is somehow anti-development.

Hey, there's a nice plot of land situated right next to Paulus Hook Park that is currently being wasted as a parking lot. I bet we could squeeze a 9 or 10 story apartment building there, too. They could even put a Jersey Shore-style nightclub on the ground level.

No? What are you, anti-development?


I don't see why it would do any harm, provided that the building was not ugly, the street level interfaced with the neighborhood, etc. The idea that *height* is the main issue in whether a development is good for a neighborhood is frankly bizarre and seems to result from a sort of small-town fetishism. That isn't to say that the belief that height is bad isn't widespread--it is. But, when asked for explanation as to why, the anti-height crowd isn't very good at explaining (no, "out of context", whatever that means, isn't an inherently bad thing).

Posted on: 2014/9/22 20:21
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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You're wrong about the high turnout on the McGinley Square hearing this past May, John. Eminent domain was struck from that plan way back in 2009 and hadn't been an issue on this plan in years. We had high turnout because we busted our butts to get our neighbors there. Our issues were all about what we could get for the neighborhood in exchange for the extra 100 feet of height the developer wanted, including funding towards a park. We also pushed for and won an abolishment of the four gigantic video screens the developer wanted to put on the building, and a payment structure for any future height bonuses for other buildings to be built in the zone. Bottom line, we were highly organized, were clear on what we wanted, got turnout and won most of what we wanted. We also worked our council people for the weeks leading up to the second reading, and fought it out at Planning Board meetings prior to this.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 19:05
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Quote:

T-Bird wrote:
Quote:

07310 wrote:

I always find it amusing the way people panic at the thought of change.


And I am equally amused when people make grand, sweeping statements with a small percentage of the details.


Well-said. It's as if anyone who doesn't have an "anything goes" attitude toward development in their neighborhood is somehow anti-development.

Hey, there's a nice plot of land situated right next to Paulus Hook Park that is currently being wasted as a parking lot. I bet we could squeeze a 9 or 10 story apartment building there, too. They could even put a Jersey Shore-style nightclub on the ground level.

No? What are you, anti-development?

Posted on: 2014/9/22 17:37
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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07310 wrote:

I always find it amusing the way people panic at the thought of change.


And I am equally amused when people make grand, sweeping statements with a small percentage of the details.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 17:21
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Conformist wrote:

Zoning is not forever.


Nor should it be for sale.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 17:20
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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OneSkirt wrote:
It sounds like you should really get your Gulls Cove neighbors together and speak out against this at the city meetings stat. We were successful in doing this via the Council for the McGinely Sq. Redevelopment Plan. Its worth it.


There are folks who are unhappy about it and will likely attend tomorrow night's (not the normal Wednesday night, because of the holiday) council meeting, but lets be real. McGinley square turned out a vocal crowd because eminent domain was potentially involved. That is a powerful thing to rally people around.

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T-Bird wrote:
My understanding is that the Paulus Hook Neighborhood Association blessed this.


That is 100% false. I am on the HPHA and they did not give their consent whatsoever. I will defer to the actual board members (I'm a voting member, but not a board member) on the meetings that took place discussing this development. The long and short of it is that they don't have any legitimate power to stop the city's development office from approving it. That is, unless someone organized ALL of the residents of those streets to petition against it and present it to city hall.

As a result, they're negotiating concessions from the builders to benefit the community (money for the new parks to be built, XYZ number of retail spaces of a certain type, etc.).

Again, I can't speak to all of the specifics, but HPHA did not bless this one. Whomever told you that is ill informed.


It was a senior planner in the city's planning department, who I know fairly well and wouldn't have a reason to doubt. Perhaps that person was informed by the developer rather than directly from the HPHA.

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PEC0905 wrote:

Atrocious?? Strong comments for someone who probably has not seen renderings and likely does not even live in the neighborhood.
I'm assuming you prefer the vacant lot? Or better yet, you preferred the burnt out factory and desolate side street that used to be there. The one you couldn't park on because every night the cars would be broken into?
This lot backs up to the football field and will not affect the neighborhood any different than a 7 story tower would. It will add retail and parking and change the street scape for the better.
As for Gulls Cove, there is new construction everywhere. The views that didn't get lost from 18 park will now have to worry about the new hotel on Marin that will be 16 stories, and the vacant pest control lot that will be developed. There will also be high rises going up between sussex and morris on the water that will be much higher than 15 stories so any west facing views in Gulls Cove are on borrowed time anyway.



Nothing you say is different between 7 stories and 15 stories. Street scape improves at 7 and at 15. Retail occurs at 7 and 15. Parking occurs at 7 and 15. But you are putting a lot more people into that area, which does affect the neighbourhood.

I am very familiar with the developments to my south, most were contemplated in something along the lines of their current form (at least from the 10th floor perspective.) They were proposed and planned long ago. And I am pro development.

I think you meant "east" when mentioning views on borrowed time - there is a difference between having your view blocked a few hundred feet away and half a mile away. I'm not trying to make this into something larger than it is - I love my home and am glad to see the neighbourhood flourish and grow. I would just like to know what the truth is when making a significant investment.

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vindication15 wrote:

I accompanied my friend on the tour when he bought in GC and the realtor emphasized to him that the views are not promised, even on the PH levels. Since owners in a newport building won their lawsuit against the developer, I know for sure that realtors are not promising any views of any kind. If you were promised a view, then you have precedent to sue and win that case.


Was told the same thing about views, however we live in a unit that is unusual in that it actually will have views. Generally speaking though, Gull's Cove is not a "view" building.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 17:18
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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T-Bird wrote:
My understanding is that the Paulus Hook Neighborhood Association blessed this. My complaint is that if you don't live in Paulus Hook, you wouldn't have had any way of knowing about this until now - after it has been introduced to the council and only a couple of days before the vote for final adoption occurs.

I live in Gull's Cove (which is closer to the proposed building than at least half of Paulus Hook), on the 10th floor. I bought my home based on the previously approved zoning and the views it accorded. With a capricious wave of a wand (and a developer's check book for something called the "Four Corners Park" - how you can have a park with two major streets comprising at least half the space is beyond me), that is gone. I can live without seeing the Freedom Tower, but it certainly has a potential impact on my resale value.


You live many, many blocks away from the waterfront. Of course your views aren't guaranteed or protected, and it's ridiculous to expect otherwise. Zoning is not forever, and shouldn't be.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 17:04
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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PEC0905 wrote:

Atrocious?? Strong comments for someone who probably has not seen renderings and likely does not even live in the neighborhood.
I'm assuming you prefer the vacant lot? Or better yet, you preferred the burnt out factory and desolate side street that used to be there. The one you couldn't park on because every night the cars would be broken into?
This lot backs up to the football field and will not affect the neighborhood any different than a 7 story tower would. It will add retail and parking and change the street scape for the better.
As for Gulls Cove, there is new construction everywhere. The views that didn't get lost from 18 park will now have to worry about the new hotel on Marin that will be 16 stories, and the vacant pest control lot that will be developed. There will also be high rises going up between sussex and morris on the water that will be much higher than 15 stories so any west facing views in Gulls Cove are on borrowed time anyway.



Don't presume to know where other people live.

I am very well aware of the time when that stretch of Van Vorst St. was desolate and a haven for car break-ins. I've also seen the renderings of the new proposal. They'd be perfectly fine for Exchange Place or Newport-- areas that are already home to many highrise towers. But a 15-story tower does not belong on that stretch, regardless of the design. This proposed tower is essentially the same height as the Warren St. Portside tower (which is 17 stories). Go look at that building and tell me that it would look appropriate between Morris and Sussex on Van Vorst St.

I'm not arguing that there should be no development on Van Vorst St. What I have a problem with is a *fifteen-story* tower as opposed to a six-story building. Such a giant tower is totally out-of-character for the neighborhood. There is a reason that there's a 6-story max to begin with-- it's an historic district. Exceptions to the height restriction should be exceedingly rare. I don't think "making the developer a ton more money" qualifies as an appropriate exception.

This is not at all a similar situation to when Portside was built in the late 80's. First of all, those towers are at the end of the peninsula and don't stick out in the middle of a bunch of low-rises like a sore thumb. Second of all, back then the neighborhood was desperate for development. Today? Paulus Hook is one of the most desirable neighborhoods in the the city. We don't need to be compromising the neighborhood's historic character like we did in 1989. It is the city and the neighborhood that should be dictating the terms of developing that prime real estate, not the developers.


What is a height that you would have a problem with? 20 stories? 30? To me 15 stories for that area is too high for that part of the neighborhood.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 16:56
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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T-Bird wrote:

I live in Gull's Cove (which is closer to the proposed building than at least half of Paulus Hook), on the 10th floor. I bought my home based on the previously approved zoning and the views it accorded. With a capricious wave of a wand (and a developer's check book for something called the "Four Corners Park" - how you can have a park with two major streets comprising at least half the space is beyond me), that is gone. I can live without seeing the Freedom Tower, but it certainly has a potential impact on my resale value.


This building will enhance the neighborhood and increase the value of your property. New buildings always provide an upgrade to existing areas. I always find it amusing the way people panic at the thought of change.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 16:16
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Great - I can listen Yvonne blabber on about something instead (half joking).

I know you are right and I would like to try and go - unfortunately don't usually leave the office until 8ish. Will try and head over if I can.


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OneSkirt wrote:
They won't get to the item right at 5:30. It will take them a little while with all the other business (at least an hour, likely). You should just show up as soon as you can if you are interested.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 16:09
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Maise wrote:
Wish I had a job that allowed me to get back to city hall for a 5:30 council meeting.

Hopefully some folks from the neighborhood will be able to make it.


They won't get to the item right at 5:30. It will take them a little while with all the other business (at least an hour, likely). You should just show up as soon as you can if you are interested.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 16:07
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Wish I had a job that allowed me to get back to city hall for a 5:30 council meeting.

Hopefully some folks from the neighborhood will be able to make it.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 15:37
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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The items in bold: You can still push for, and should. thisis your one and only chance to get anything like that so go for it. That's what you all can get out of the hearing with the Council. Meaningful help for the neighborhood for the additional height.You can even request that they pay $x per additional sqaure foot built above the 6 stories and get the Council to specify where that $ gets spent. We did this successfully for McGinley Sq. for future buildings to go on the redevelopment site, as well as getting meaningful cash from the current developer for their extra height. All done at the Council Redevelopment Plan hearing.

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Maise wrote:
bill - I don't think your math is right. They previously needed one parking space for each two housing units. Now they need .6 for each unit or 1.2 parking spaces for each two units, plus a defined amount of parking for the retail square footage. The parking requirements are actually higher in the proposed plan than the current one.

I own a condo around the corner from this site and am 100% for the development. The additional height will have no bearing on the neighborhood and is a huge improvement over the vacant lot and field house.

That being said, it will be important to ensure the community give back items are meaningful. As someone else pointed out, the developer is really just paying for amenities their own tenants will be using. We should be using this approval process as way to exact the most meaningful concessions as possible. I would of liked to have seen more $$ for parks and some sort of flood prevention / drainage system for future Sandy-like storms.



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bill wrote:

Also currently there needs to be 1 off street parking spot for every 2 units and they want 1 for every 6 .

LOL and expand principal use to include nightclubs among other things

Posted on: 2014/9/22 15:11
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Maise wrote:
bill - I don't think your math is right. They previously needed one parking space for each two housing units. Now they need .6 for each unit or 1.2 parking spaces for each two units, plus a defined amount of parking for the retail square footage. The parking requirements are actually higher in the proposed plan than the current one.


Yeah you are right, I just skimmed it and missed the .

Posted on: 2014/9/22 15:03
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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bill - I don't think your math is right. They previously needed one parking space for each two housing units. Now they need .6 for each unit or 1.2 parking spaces for each two units, plus a defined amount of parking for the retail square footage. The parking requirements are actually higher in the proposed plan than the current one.

I own a condo around the corner from this site and am 100% for the development. The additional height will have no bearing on the neighborhood and is a huge improvement over the vacant lot and field house.

That being said, it will be important to ensure the community give back items are meaningful. As someone else pointed out, the developer is really just paying for amenities their own tenants will be using. We should be using this approval process as way to exact the most meaningful concessions as possible. I would of liked to have seen more $$ for parks and some sort of flood prevention / drainage system for future Sandy-like storms.



Quote:

bill wrote:

Also currently there needs to be 1 off street parking spot for every 2 units and they want 1 for every 6 .

LOL and expand principal use to include nightclubs among other things

Posted on: 2014/9/22 14:53
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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It'd be rich if they got their concession as well as a generous abatement.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 14:15
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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asny10011 wrote:
Is the issue one of being in a historic neighborhood??? Isn't there a height restriction????

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PEC0905 wrote:
Quote:

jcman420 wrote:
Atrocious. *15* stories? This is practically as tall as one of the Portside Towers at the end of Warren St. That is *huge*. This has the potential to change the character of the entire neighborhood. That neighborhood is already becoming overcrowded. Now they're trying to turn it into Newport.

Amazing what writing a big enough check for the proposed park will do for a developer. A lousy $150k contribution to the park? Who knew Paulus Hook could be bought off so cheaply?


Atrocious?? Strong comments for someone who probably has not seen renderings and likely does not even live in the neighborhood.
I'm assuming you prefer the vacant lot? Or better yet, you preferred the burnt out factory and desolate side street that used to be there. The one you couldn't park on because every night the cars would be broken into?
This lot backs up to the football field and will not affect the neighborhood any different than a 7 story tower would. It will add retail and parking and change the street scape for the better.
As for Gulls Cove, there is new construction everywhere. The views that didn't get lost from 18 park will now have to worry about the new hotel on Marin that will be 16 stories, and the vacant pest control lot that will be developed. There will also be high rises going up between sussex and morris on the water that will be much higher than 15 stories so any west facing views in Gulls Cove are on borrowed time anyway.



Van Vorst was all factories and vacant lots and is not landmarked. This does not affect the core of Paulus Hook centered around Washington.

If this was a block further east I'd agree with the opposition, however its replacing an eyesore and improving the block. It would fit in nicely with the Maddox and the renderings actually make the street look much better.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 14:13
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Yes, there is a height restriction but if you look at the link they want a 7floor bonus.

Also currently there needs to be 1 off street parking spot for every 2 units and they want 1 for every 6 .

Renderings are also on that site.

LOL and expand principal use to include nightclubs among other things

Posted on: 2014/9/22 14:12
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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Is the issue one of being in a historic neighborhood??? Isn't there a height restriction????

Quote:

PEC0905 wrote:
Quote:

jcman420 wrote:
Atrocious. *15* stories? This is practically as tall as one of the Portside Towers at the end of Warren St. That is *huge*. This has the potential to change the character of the entire neighborhood. That neighborhood is already becoming overcrowded. Now they're trying to turn it into Newport.

Amazing what writing a big enough check for the proposed park will do for a developer. A lousy $150k contribution to the park? Who knew Paulus Hook could be bought off so cheaply?


Atrocious?? Strong comments for someone who probably has not seen renderings and likely does not even live in the neighborhood.
I'm assuming you prefer the vacant lot? Or better yet, you preferred the burnt out factory and desolate side street that used to be there. The one you couldn't park on because every night the cars would be broken into?
This lot backs up to the football field and will not affect the neighborhood any different than a 7 story tower would. It will add retail and parking and change the street scape for the better.
As for Gulls Cove, there is new construction everywhere. The views that didn't get lost from 18 park will now have to worry about the new hotel on Marin that will be 16 stories, and the vacant pest control lot that will be developed. There will also be high rises going up between sussex and morris on the water that will be much higher than 15 stories so any west facing views in Gulls Cove are on borrowed time anyway.


Posted on: 2014/9/22 14:03
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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I have seen the same report written somewhere, can not remember the source. I was somewhat surprised to read that.... think traffic is bad no at the intersection of Van Vorst and Grand Street. Cars refuse to stop for people crossing there now despite the Warning Sign. That sign has been knocked down so much, because I tend to straighten it out. Have no problem with a similar structure going up in the foot print.

Posted on: 2014/9/22 14:03
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Re: Proposed development on Van Vorst between Sussex & Morris
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i really don't see the problem with going to 15 stories as long as there are givebacks..more public park space al la the developments in williamsburg.

any renderings?

Posted on: 2014/9/22 14:00
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