Planned Resilience Park Location: 800 Monroe Street in Hoboken. (Google Maps images)
A protracted battle over 1.43 acres in Hoboken, New Jersey, appears to end with more green space for the community, despite some conflicting messages about how the city will pay for the endeavour.
Jersey Digs reported December 20 that city officials are looking for a qualified consultant to participate in the public process of designing what will be another resiliency park at 800 Monroe St. A previously proposed housing project for the site was killed.
“The city has taken an innovative approach to providing our residents with greater quality open spaces that also serve the dual purpose of making our square mile community more resilient to the effects of climate change,” said Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla. “I look forward to working with the community to create a multi-faceted park for all residents to enjoy.”
The news source noted that the press release obtained by Jersey Diggs is ambiguous as to exactly how the park’s construction will be funded. Plans that emerged over the summer for a 675-unit project on the Monroe Street site included a developer-financed construction of the Resilience Park property, but that proposal was held up after it was presented during a community meeting.
When contacted by Jersey Digs regarding park financing, a spokesperson for Bhalla’s office said the city is “considering all options to fund the final construction of the park including developer contributions, the Open Space Trust, state and federal grants, and low-interest loans through the I-Bank.”
Flexibility Park on Monroe Street would be the city’s third if completed. Southwest Park opened in 2017 and is currently expanding, while the five-acre Northwest Park is under construction before the 2022 opening.
Each of these green spaces include groundwater retention systems.
Another park slated to be built for the northern Hoboken waterfront as part of the federally funded Rebuild by Design project will also include several green infrastructure.
Consider the ambitious residential location first
In January 2020, Jersey Digs revealed the news of a proposal for a 4.3-acre property at 930 Monroe St. Which was home to the Amazon fulfillment center. Those designs envisioned 393 units in a trio of mixed-use buildings that house retail and plazas near the 9th Street Light Rail Station.
Last summer, site owner Madigan Development submitted a massive new plan that proposed 675 housing units spread among three buildings that would measure 116 feet tall.
The aesthetic of this proposal was like what it first appeared nearly two years ago. The residential component was to include a 10 percent affordable housing component of Hoboken regulations and 50,000 square feet of retail space for the ground floor of the buildings.
A new element of the plan emerged when Madigan Development agreed to spend $10 million to develop a 1.5-acre park at 800 Monroe St. Facilities described in the garden design include a centrally located playground and fountain, and several walking paths.
Hoboken obtained the eviction in a settlement agreement with Ironstate Development earlier in 2021 before the property was set aside for open space.