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Friday, July 1, 2016

New Hotel Planned for Newark's South Ward


Newark, New Jersey: Another new hotel could be coming to the City of Newark. 

According to a legal notice, the hotel is proposed for 94-120 Frelinghuysen Avenue in Newark's South Ward, at the corner of Poiner Street. 

Currently, the eight-story SNAP (Secure Newark Airport Parking) Garage is located at the site. The proposal by 98 Frelinghuysen Real Estate Urban Renewal Entity calls for constructing a new four-story building attached to the current building to be used as a hotel with 129 rooms. The existing building went from being an abandoned factory to a parking garage in 2012. 

The hotel would also have a 'sky lobby' "that includes a bar and breakfast buffet area, a fitness center, business center, meeting room, and lounge", according to the notice. 

The Newark Zoning Board of Adjustment will hear the proposal at its meeting on Thursday, July 14th at 7:00pm. This story will be updated. 

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Photo of the Day 7/1/16


This photo shows the Washington Rock overlook at South Mountain Reservation on a cloudy afternoon.

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Thursday, June 30, 2016

Caldwell Restaurant Week Returns in August


Caldwell, New Jersey: Western Essex County's only Restaurant Week is returning to one local borough in August. 

The third annual Caldwell Restaurant Week will be held from Sunday, August 7th to Sunday, August 14th at businesses along the Bloomfield Avenue corridor in Caldwell, such as Xunta - Tapas EspaƱa, Asalt and Buttery, and Gelotti. A full list of participating restaurants will be released in the near future, and many will offer prix fixe menus and specials. 

Bloomfield, Montclair, Maplewood, South Orange, and Newark also hold restaurant weeks. 

Essex County Place is a media partner of Caldwell Restaurant Week, as are Garden State Food Tours and Black Tie & Flip Flops.



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Construction Continues on New Essex County Wawa Locations


Fairfield, New Jersey: Construction is continuing on two new Wawa locations in Essex County.

Wawa, which is based in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, will open gas stations and convenience stores in Fairfield and Maplewood. 

Maplewood's Wawa location, first announced at the beginning of 2015, will be located at the corner of Springfield Avenue and Jacoby Street, at the site of Maplewood Plumbing Supply, a parking lot, and an additional building. An additional entrance on 45th Street is planned. A 'coming soon' sign for the Wawa was recently added. 

The Fairfield Wawa will be located at 387-389 Passaic Avenue, at the southwest corner of Little Falls Road, near Route 46. It will be built alongside a new Chase Bank location by J&J Development Group. The Fairfield Office Center was previously located at the site.

Although there are locations in neighboring Morris, Hudson, Bergen, and Union Counties, the new locations will be Wawa's first in Essex County.

Essex County has recently seen an increase in the development of convenience stores. In fact, the Fairfield Wawa will be located just across the street from a QuickChek store and gas station that opened at the end of last year at the site of an Exxon station, and the Maplewood location will be one block away from a QuickChek store. In the past five years, competitor 7-Eleven has opened stores in Maplewood, South Orange, Livingston, East Orange, and Newark.

Wawa did not respond to requests for comments as to when the locations will open.

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Photo of the Day 6/30/16


This photo shows the view of Maplewood Middle School from South Mountain Reservation.

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Wednesday, June 29, 2016

As Newark Prepares to Expand Riverfront Park, Visitors Asked to Complete Survey


Newark, New Jersey: As local officials prepare for the expansion of Riverfront Park in Newark from the Ironbound through Downtown, input is wanted from members of the public.

Currently, the park, which is managed by Essex County, consists of 12 acres along Raymond Boulevard in the Ironbound with athletic fields, walking trails, a dock used for boat tours, and playgrounds. Under the new project, Riverfront Park will be expanded to the Bridge Street Bridge in Downtown Newark. It will pass the Jackson Street Bridge and Newark Penn Station, and will be built adjacent to McCarter Highway/Route 21. It will include the trail near the FBI's Newark office. 

Pedestrian and bicycle pathways, benches, a boathouse, athletic fields, habitat areas, a new floating dock, a stage, an amphitheater, exercise courses, fitness equipment, playground equipment, restroom facilities, and decorative fences are planned for the expanded park, according to a legal notice.

Once the expansion is complete, Triangle Park will be located at the south end of Newark Penn Station while Riverfront Park will be located at the north end.

James Corner Field Operations will be the lead designer landscape architect for the next phases of the park. According to the City of Newark, Corner's projects have included the High Line in Manhattan, the Race Street Pier in Philadelphia, and Freshkills Park in Staten Island.

Now, the Newark Community Economic Development Corporation and the City of Newark have created the Newark Riverfront Park Pre-Design Survey to gather feedback from the community. Questions range from 'What is your greatest ambition for the Newark Riverfront?' to 'Which area of the Riverfront has the most potential?' to 'What features would you most like to see along the Riverfront?'.

Click here to fill out the survey.

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OG Sole Plans to Open in Orange


Orange, New Jersey: A new store is planning to open soon in Downtown Orange.

OG Sole will open a location at 214 Main Street in Orange, between Brook Alley and South Center Street. According to the business Instagram page, the new store will hold a grand opening on Saturday, July 16th. A variety of clothing and sneakers will be sold at the business, and a sneaker arcade, screen printing, and embroidery will also be available on site, according to OG Sole.

Previously, OG Sole was located along Route 17 in Paramus, Bergen County. The building that OG Sole will occupy in Orange was built in 2014, and the space was previously occupied by Jewelry Depot. A building that stood at the site containing Milan Couture and Bebe Nails Salon was demolished in 2013.

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Ironbound Development Project Could Receive a 15 Year Tax Abatement


Newark, New Jersey: A building in Newark's East Ward which is being redeveloped could receive a tax abatement.

Essex County Place first reported in January that the building located at 118-134 Adams Street, between Lafayette and Ferry Streets, will be converted into a mixed use residential and commercial building. 

The building stretches to Jackson Street, the next block. According to a Newark Central Planning Board agenda, the project will include 28 apartments on the upper floors and six retail spaces on the first floor. The H. E. Rainaud Company, which manufactured lamps, used the building as a factory until 1919, when it moved its operations to Connecticut. The Flexible Cork Company also operated a factory in the building, as did a furniture company. The building is known for the American flag painted on its side.

Now, according to a legal notice, developer Beacon Redevelopment Urban Renewal Company could receive a 15-year tax abatement from the City of Newark. The first reading of the ordinance which would allow the tax abatement was passed by the Newark Municipal Council on June 15, and could be finally approved at the meeting on July 7. 

According to the City of Newark, businesses receiving tax abatements in the city must pay an annual service charge instead of property taxes.

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Photo of the Day 6/29/16


A bird is seen leaving a tree in this photo taken at South Mountain Reservation in Millburn.

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Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Ironbound Building Could Become Historic Landmark


Newark, New Jersey: A building in Newark's East Ward may soon be considered by the City of Newark to be a historic property.

According to a legal notice, the Dietze Building, located in the Ironbound at 60-64 Union Street, between Ferry Street and Hamilton Street, is in the process of being designated as a historic landmark by the Newark Landmarks and Historic Preservation Committee and the City of Newark.

Originally built in the 1890s, according to the notice, the Dietze Building, which is four stories tall, was reconstructed in 1927 for the Dietze Realty Corporation by architect Charles F. Ackerman. It is currently used for residential and artist spaces.

Local artist Anker West applied for the historic designation in 2014, the notice reports. 

According to Old Newark, the Kirchhof Patent Company once operated a toy factory in the building, and a 'ghost sign' advertising novelties can still be seen outside the building.

The Newark Municipal Council passed the first reading of the proposed historic designation on June 15 and will vote on the final reading on July 7.

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