Journal Square

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The Labor Bank Building at 26 Journal Square was the city's first skyscraper.

Journal Square is a business district, residential area, and transportation hub in Jersey City, New Jersey, which takes its name from the newspaper Jersey Journal whose headquarters are located there.[1] The "square" itself is at the intersection of Kennedy Boulevard and Bergen Avenues. The broader area extends to and includes Bergen Square, McGinley Square, India Square, the Five Corners and parts of the Marion Section.[2] Many local, state, and federal agencies serving Hudson County maintain offices in the district.

History[edit]

The Square was named for the Jersey Journal.

Prior to its development as a commercial district Journal Square was the site of many farmhouses and manors belonging to descendants of the original settlers of Bergen, the first chartered municipality in the state settled in 1660 and located just south at Bergen Square. In conjunction with the 1912 opening of the Hudson and Manhattan Railroad Summit Avenue station many were demolished to make way for modern buildings, including the still standing Labor Bank Building and the Public Service building. The Newkirk House[3] and Van Wagenen House remain, while the still-intact Sip Manor was moved to Westfield, New Jersey.[4] The square was created in 1923 when the city condemned and demolished the offices of the Jersey Journal, thus creating a broad intersection with Hudson Boulevard which itself had been widened in 1908. The newspaper built new headquarters and the new square was named in its honor.[5]

Hudson County Boulevard Bridge

The bridge carrying the boulevard was designed by consulting engineer Abraham Burton Cohen and completed in 1926.[6] For most of the twentieth century Journal Square was the cultural entertainment center of Hudson County,[7] home to the movies palaces built in the 1920s: The State (1922, and since demolished),[8] the Stanley Theater (1928),[9] and the Loew's Jersey Theater (1929).[10] Karen Angel of The New York Daily News described Journal Square from the 1920s to the 1960s as "crown jewel, a glowing commercial, entertainment and transportation hub of the city."[11] The "Jersey Bounce", a hit song in the 1940s mentions Journal Square in its lyrics as the place where it got started.[12] Two days before Election Day in 1960 John F. Kennedy made his last campaign speech before returning to New England at Journal Square.[13] Hudson Boulevard was named Kennedy Boulevard soon after his assassination. The Tube Bar, so-called for the Hudson Tubes (as the fore-runner of the PATH system was called) was made famous by Louis "Red" Deutsch getting prank calls there.[14]

Today[edit]

Journal Square at dusk

The Journal Square Transportation Center, opened between 1973-1975[15] includes the Journal Square PATH and bus station.[16] and is headquarters of the Port Authority Trans-Hudson. It is attributed to have contributed to the decline of the district by moving the train-bus interchange, and thus pedestrians, away from other commercial activities around the square.[11] It is built on an elevated bridge structure above the Bergen Hill Cut, an 1834 railroad cut once used by Pennsylvania Railroad main line and Jersey City Branch and now by the PATH rapid transit system and an occasional freight train. In front of the station is a statue of Jackie Robinson who in 1946 crossed the baseball color line at Roosevelt Stadium.[17] A statue of Christopher Columbus, the work of Jersey City native Archimedes Giacomontonio, has been located on the square since 1950.[18] The Stanley and the Loew's have both been restored, the first now an Assembly Hall of Jehovah's Witnesses,[9] the latter used as a moviehouse and for other cultural events.[10]

The campus of Hudson County Community College is a collection of buildings throughout the district around the square.[19] A few blocks to the south near McGinley Square, are Saint Peter's College, Hudson Catholic Regional High School, and the Jersey City Armory. A concentration of shops operated two of the city's ethnic groups, Overseas Filipino and Indian American,[20] can be found along Newark Avenue and near India Square to the north.

Northeast of Journal Square is Five Corners, the county seat of Hudson County. The Hudson County Courthouse, located at 583 Newark Avenue 40°43′55″N 74°3′25″W / 40.73194°N 74.05694°W / 40.73194; -74.05694 (Hudson County Courthouse), and the adjacent Hudson County Administration Building, at 595 Newark Avenue, are home to the county's courts and a number of county agencies and departments. The Five Corners Branch of the Jersey City Public Library is sited on the intersection itself, while William L. Dickinson High School is located nearby at 2 Palisade Avenue.

Future[edit]

Many of the buildings in Journal Square include housing stock (such as brownstones, pre-war apartment buildings, and frame houses), convenience stores, bodegas, and downscale franchises, that Jerremiah Healy, Mayor of Jersey City, has referred to as "ugly old eyesores."[11] The redevelopment of Journal Square has attracted the interest of urban planners, architects, sociologists, and others, many who view its historical, current, and future use as an important indicator of the contemporary understanding of how cities function.[7][21][22][23][24][25]

In December 2012 it was announced that the Jersey Journal would sell its building and relocate to another location in Hudson County.[26]

As of 2008 there were proposals to build a complex called 1 Journal Square which would combine rental housing, multi-story retail and parking. Plans for the mixed-use development call for 68 story and 50 story residential towers above a 7-story retail and parking base with a rooftop terrace.[27][28] While the site has been cleared construction has not begun.[29] Deadlines to begin construction by 2011 were not met by the developer, Mult-Employer Property Trust[30] MEPT, in October 2011, purchased Newport Tower on the Hudson Waterfront for $377 million, a record price for an office real estate transaction in the state.[31] A further extension to 2013 requested by MEPTA was not granted by the Jersey City Redevelopment Agency.[32]

Jersey City is one of nine municipalities in New Jersey designated as eligible for Urban Transit Hub Tax Credits by the state's Economic Development Authority. Developers who invest a minimum of $50 million within 0.5 miles of a train station are eligible for pro-rated tax credit.[33][34]

A proposed development by Kushner Real Estate Group adjacent Journal Square Transportation Center would include an 85-story building, the tallest in the city, if built.[35][36] Work began in January 2013.[37]

In 2012, the city adopted a variance for a development proposal to build a 42-story residential tower and adjacent garage on the south and east sides of the Newkirk House.[38][39][40] A new thirteen story residential building is proposed for a parking platform adjacent to and overlooking the PATH tracks originally developed in 1984.[41][42]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Jersey Journal, 30 Journal Square". New Jersey City University. Retrieved 2007-08-26. 
  2. ^ Hudson County New Jersey Street Map. Hagstrom Map Company, Inc. 2008. ISBN 0-88097-763-9. 
  3. ^ Newkirk House
  4. ^ "Sip Manor House". Njcu.edu. Retrieved 2008-11-01. 
  5. ^ Grundy, J. Owen (1975). ""I am the law.."". The History of Jersey City (1609 - 1976). Jersey City: Walter E. Knight; Progress Printing Company. p. 53. 
  6. ^ Cohen, A. Burton. "Hudson County Boulevard Bridge Plaza." Purdue Engineering Review 21, No. 4 (May 1926): 3-6, 22.
  7. ^ a b Eric M. Friedman, Journal Square and the Old Loew's Theatre: Grassroots Resistance in a City Center, Canon Magazine, 2009
  8. ^ State Theater
  9. ^ a b Stanely Theater
  10. ^ a b Loew's Jersey
  11. ^ a b c Angel, Karen. "Journal Squared: A Jersey City neighborhood's housing multiplies." The New York Daily News. Friday November 13, 2009. 1. Retrieved on November 13, 2009.
  12. ^ Jersey Bounce. (2009, May 30). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 03:57, November 9, 2009, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Jersey_Bounce&oldid=293339886
  13. ^ 1960:Kennedy at Journal Square
  14. ^ Weird NJ Vol. 2 Tube Bar Interview Accessed May 12, 2009.
  15. ^ JSQ Trans Ctr history
  16. ^ Port Authority JSQ Trans Ctr
  17. ^ Roosevelt Stadium
  18. ^ Columbus Statue
  19. ^ Hudson County Community College official web site
  20. ^ can be found along Newark Avenue and at India Square."India Square" accessed November 7, 2009
  21. ^ JC Museum: (Re)Centering: New Visions for Journal Square
  22. ^ JSQ Redevelopment Plans
  23. ^ http://thejcra.org/jcra_files/File/development_projects/journal_square/Redevelopment_Plan_submitted_to_City_Council_after_caucuspdf.pdf
  24. ^ http://www.policy.rutgers.edu/vtc/tod/.../JerseyCity.html
  25. ^ Journal Square 2060 (Report). Jersey City Planning Department. http://www.scribd.com/doc/34274347/Draft-Journal-Square-2060-Redevelopment-Pla. Retrieved 2011-0515.
  26. ^ Mcdonald, Terrence (December 5, 2012). "The Jersey Journal finalizing sale of its Journal Square offices in Jersey City". The Jersey Journal. Retrieved 2012-12-05. 
  27. ^ NJ.com Accessed May 12, 2009.
  28. ^ JSRC New JSQ
  29. ^ http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/2010/07/jersey_city_planning_board_app.html
  30. ^ http://www.nj.com/jjournal-news/index.ssf/2012/03/jersey_city_signals_it_wants_d.html
  31. ^ http://www.commercialobserver.com/2011/10/new-jerseys-biggest-tower-sale-ever/
  32. ^ http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/2012/04/journal_square_developer_threa.html
  33. ^ "Urban Transit Hub Tax Credits". Financing Programs. New Jersey Economic Development Authority. Retrieved 2013-12-28. 
  34. ^ "NEW JERSEY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT AUTHORITY Urban Transit Hub Tax Credit Program Approved Projects". Urban Transit Hub Tax Credits. New Jersey Economic Development Authority. December 3, 2013. Retrieved 2013-12-28-. 
  35. ^ "Featured News » New Development Planned for Journal Square Would Include the City’s Tallest Tower, Fundamentally Change the Neighborhood". The Jersey City Independent. 2012-08-07. Retrieved 2013-12-31. 
  36. ^ "Three residential towers to change the landscape of Journal Square, officials say". NJ.com. 2012-08-15. Retrieved 2013-12-31. 
  37. ^ http://www.nj.com/hudson/index.ssf/2014/01/major_demolition_underway_on_journal_square_site_of_666_million_residential_towers.html#incart_river_default
  38. ^ "Featured News » City Settles Lawsuit with Robinhood Plaza, Permits 42-Story Zoning for Property Along Summit Ave". The Jersey City Independent. 2012-11-29. Retrieved 2013-12-31. 
  39. ^ Hunger, Matt (November 29, 2012). "City Settles Lawsuit with Robinhood Plaza, Permits 42-Story Zoning for Property Along Summit Ave". Jersey City Independent. Retrieved 2013-05-20. 
  40. ^ McDonald, Terence T. (July 23, 2012). "42-story residential tower on tap for Jersey City". The Jersey Journal. Retrieved 2013-05-20. 
  41. ^ Ziegler, Nicholass (August 18, 2011). "$78M Journal Square Building in Jersey Sold to Israeli Investors". Commercial Executive. Retrieved 2013-12-29. 
  42. ^ McDonald, Terrence (December 23, 2013). "13-story luxury rental tower planned for Journal Square gets $19.2 million tax break". The Jersey Journal. Retrieved 2013-12-29. 

Coordinates: 40°43′56″N 74°03′52″W / 40.7322°N 74.0645°W / 40.7322; -74.0645

External links/photos[edit]