By John Heinis/Hudson County View
The plan, which will be introduced at tomorrow’s city council meeting, would redevelop the underutilized parking lot behind the post office as a hotel with unique architecture.
It would also require the redesign and reconstruction of Newark Street with wide sidewalks and streetscape features to improve connectivity to the waterfront and would activate the block of Sinatra Drive between Newark Street and First Street.
“I thank Council President Giattino and Redevelopment Committee Chair Councilman Cunningham for advocating for this project and working very hard to address some of my initial concerns,” Mayor Dawn Zimmer said in a statement.
“With the W Hotel often fully booked, there is a clear need for more hotel space for our families, friends, and everyone who visits Hoboken. This world-class hotel would improve pedestrian and bicycle connectivity to our waterfront, replace an eyesore with a vibrant, active streetscape with public amenities, and also provide much-needed meeting and event space for our community.”
As Hudson County View first reported last month, the council bonded for $5.3 million for repairs at Pier A Park, anticipating a new hotel in the works.
The plan is estimated to create more than 100 permanent jobs and generate over $1 million annually in real estate taxes, in addition to hotel taxes on a site that is currently exempt from taxes.
“This project will bring tremendous benefits to the neighborhood, create jobs in Hoboken, and generate significant real estate and hotel taxes that will help to keep our taxes stable,” Giattino said in the same statement.
“I want to especially thank City planner Jessica Giorgianni who has done an amazing job on this plan.”
The Hoboken 2004 Master Plan encourages hotels in the area near Hoboken Terminal to “provide a needed service for residents, businesses, and visitors.”
“As Council Subcommittee Chair, my projects have always strongly supported diversifying our tax base from residential towards more commercial, and this project does just that,” added Cunningham.
“I am confident we have met these challenges which will result in a win-win for Hoboken and its local businesses and residents.”
Setback requirements for the hotel, which must use high quality design materials and architecture, are designed to narrow the building to maximize light, air, and open space and minimize shadows on Pier A Park, officials said.
The implementation of the plan would terminate the existing easement with the Post Office which provides angled parking for Post Office vehicles along Newark Street where there currently is no sidewalk.
All Post Office and hotel loading activities would be moved to First Street and take place inside of a building and the hotel would be required to have lease agreements with private parking garages, according to the mayor’s office.