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Old 06-09-2013, 08:16 PM
 
3,309 posts, read 3,532,035 times
Reputation: 1961

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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhsx1187 View Post
I'm not sure if this was supposed to be an argument for or against building a transportation network in Newark. What you are referencing are entirely different from what I am talking about. Those are stops along a commuter rail line that goes to the City. These will only get developed when the areas closer and more accesible to Manhattan are build out. This is because it cost just as much to build yet the closer one is to Manhattan the Higher the rents can be.

What I am talking about is creating a Newark centric transportation network that will connect Downtown Newark to all of its neighborhoods and most of its suburb. In doing so hundreds of thousands of people would be a cheap and relatively short train ride to downtown Newark. This has the potential to transform downtown with both and influx of residents and businesses that take advantage of the newly accessible labor pool. As a result a building boom in Newark would ensure, quickly overshadowing the building boom that was caused in Hudson County by the HBLR.
I think the question you then need to ask is:

1) Who is paying for it?

2) What is the value-add for them?

Newark, with about a quarter of a million people and not that strong of a tax base, is certainly not going to pay for a 15 billion dollar project (as per your numbers) itself. Meanwhile, people from outside of Newark don't really have a substantial problem related to the status quo of transit in and out of Newark. Anything in Newark you'd want to take advantage of -- the universities, airport, prudential center, financial district employers, etc. -- are readily accessible by driving, which most people in the nearby suburbs do. Driving into/out of and around Newark is not nearly as bad as NYC where you have to cross the Hudson and then deal with driving in NYC, parking etc. The big value-add is mainly for people living in the city who don't drive, and as mentioned above, they are not going to be paying the bill. You could throw in commuters to Newark in the nearby suburbs too, but the value for them is relatively lower (see: driving) and even with them included you don't have the tax base to afford this.

So then we have that the people who would be paying (residents in the state outside the city) don't really get a nearly sufficient value-add from better access to what's already there, and we come to your next argument, that it would create a major boom in a sort of build-it-and-they-will-come effect. However, if state taxpayers more broadly are paying for this, and if people buy that argument and think that it would be worth the cost, the next obvious question becomes why Newark? If you buy the build-it-and-they-will-come argument, the opportunity cost of implementing something like this in Newark would be implementing it somewhere where you could have all of the benefits without being dragged down by all of Newark's existing problems. Further, you could do it somewhere closer to NYC and already having more momentum (read: JC and the golden coast) or somewhere further south which wouldn't trigger the inevitable north/south political divide that helped kill the ARC tunnel.
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Old 06-09-2013, 08:21 PM
 
199 posts, read 1,064,259 times
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I can't picture Newark ever seeing any gentrification.

Unfortunately, it's not close enough to Manhattan to see that benefit. Jersey City and Union City would have to fully gentrify first before Newark can even hope to attract any higher income residents since those areas are much closer to Manhattan and would obviously see demand much sooner (plus, both these areas are huge with a lot of real estate). Jersey City (minus the waterfront) is in the very early stages of gentrification and Union City pretty much hasn't even started gentrifying at all.

Another thing that many ppl don't take into account is that unfortunately New Jersey has a stigma attached to it. This doesn't mean much to most ppl but to most Hipsters (the main gentrifiers) who can be obsessed with image/labels/status, this means a lot.

I understand that there have been some improvements to Newark but unfortunately if anything, Newark seems like a likely future destination for the low-income ppl priced out of NYC since it has the lowest rents/cost of livings in the Tri-state area and offers a similar way of life of where most low-income ppl come from (the same could be said for Irvington and East Orange).

Maybe if Newark's downtown see's an unexpected massive increase in commercial activity then maybe *some* luxury housing could be built in the immediate downtown area but there is no indication of this happening.

I truly do wish Newark the best.

Last edited by Guidance100; 06-09-2013 at 09:12 PM..
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Old 06-09-2013, 08:45 PM
 
3,309 posts, read 3,532,035 times
Reputation: 1961
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guidance100 View Post
I can't picture Newark ever seeing any gentrification.

Unfortunately, it's not close enough to Manhattan to see that benefit. Jersey City and Union City would have to fully gentrify first before Newark can even hope to attract any higher income residents since those large areas are closer to Manhattan and would obviously see demand much sooner. Jersey City (minus the waterfront) is in the very early stages of gentrification and Union City pretty much hasn't even started gentrifying at all.

I understand that there have been some improvements to Newark but unfortunately if anything, it seems like a likely future destination for the low-income ppl priced out of NYC since it has the lowest rents/cost of livings in the Tri-state area and offers a similar way of life of where most low-income ppl come from.

Maybe if Newark's downtown see's an unexpected massive increase in commercial activity then maybe *some* luxury housing could be built in the area but there is no indication of this happening.

I truly do wish Newark the best.
I think you've exactly called why Newark probably won't gentrify soon (better placed alternatives with spare capacity) and the major risk to Newark -- and all other low-cost areas near in the NYC metropolitan region -- posed by rising rents in the cheaper parts of NYC.

With regards to the last part I have very mixed feelings. Newark has a lot of things of value in it (see earlier post), and takes up a big chunk of the Northeastern NJ area, and it's really a shame that the city has become what it is. On the other, the residents (or their parents) to a large extent caused the situation through the riot and crime rate, and the rest of the state has poured a lot of money in to no avail -- which Newark has rewarded us all for with blood-boiling things like rampant political corruption even by NJ standards and bribing a major corporation with nearly a billion dollars to move in from the next town over. I do wish Newark improves and does well -- and Booker, both in his administration (even if it will be ending as he goes to the Senate) and in the possibility of long-term political change that his being chosen by the local electorate represents is a sign that things might get better. However, at this point while I do sincerely wish Newark and it's people the best of luck in improving things - both for their own sake and for the rest of us in the region - I'm sick of pouring good money after bad, and I don't have much faith that those of us outside the city can effect real change there.
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:03 PM
 
Location: On the Rails in Northern NJ
12,380 posts, read 25,667,445 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhsx1187 View Post
As I stated a page back the only true "fast" way to prosperity for the city of Newark is to build a comprehensive transportation network. I have had far too much time on my hands the last few days so I drew out what the system would look like (it can be found here: https://mapsengine.google.com/map/ed...8.kKj-mXMkjVew ). The system, if fully built out, would be nearly 60 miles over 8 lines connected nearly every, if not every neighborhood in Newark. All trains would run below grade in the CBD and areas near to the CBD as to prevent additional street congestion and to allow trains to run smoother. Outside the CBD trains would run at grade. This system would connect Newark to either the town center of/or at least part of Hillside, Irvington, Elizabeth, Milburn, Vauxhall, Maplewood, South Orange, Orange, East Orange, Belleville, and Bloomfield thus helping to integrate the economies of the region. There is also a possible extension up the Passaic to Paterson the i didn't draw as well as an extension to Montclair that I left off the map.

While this would not be cheap (rough calculations put it at about 15-16 Billion) it would provide reliable transit access to nearly all Newarkers within 5 blocks of their homes, as well as provide a transportation option the hundreds of thousands who live in surrounding communities. This will not only be used for commuting to/from work but also used to dine and shop within the city by those who do not want to deal with the hassel of driving and parking. Employers will be immediately drawn to the city for its easily accessible, highly educated workforce as well as great transit connections. For a plan like this the City must swamp the entirety of Newark in police officers to flush out the crime especially around the CBD, inorder to attract companies and major development. This system would be the catalyst to billions in development in and around Newark and allow NJ to finally have a world class city of its own instead of relying on its neighbors.

let me know what you think of this plan.
That plan is a bit to big , heres the official plan by the RPA/NJT , it would be a spoke system out from Newark Penn Station using all the abandoned Railways , wide streets and underground lines.

-Extension of the Newark LRT along the NS orange branch between Grove Street and West Orange
-Extension of the Newark LRT along the NS Orange and Boonton Branch between Grove Street and Kearny's proposed Kingsland Branch station
-Newark-Paterson LRT , along the lightly used Newark Branch , servicing Belleville , Nutley and Clifton
-Newark-Cranford via EWR LRT , Subway under Broad Street to EWR station , Elevated through EWR , then at grade from Jersey Gardens to Cranford along old ROW
-Newark-Elizabeth LRT , follows the perv line above till EWR station then uses center part of Hwy 27 to Midtown Elizabeth
-Springfield Ave Subway LRT , runs from just west of Washington Street on the main line to Vauxhall or Summit via old Rahway RR ROw
-Newark-Jersey City LRT , runs from Newark Penn station to West Side Ave via a Subway under the Ironbound and bridge over Newark Bay along old ROW
-Newark-Rutherford Streetcar

Bus Rapid Transit / Express

-South Orange Ave Bus Rapid Transitway , South Orange train station to Newark Penn Station
-Central Ave Bus Rapid Transitway , Highland Ave train station to Broad Street
-Bloomfield Ave Bus Rapid Transitway , Newark Broad Street Station to Route 46
-I-280 Bus Rapid Transitway , Parsippany-Troy Hills to University Heights / Newark Penn via Market Street
-I-78 Bus lanes , Springfield to EWR Station

This plan will cost around 6 billion and carry around 480,000 people a day , half will be new riders the rest will be current riders moved around the overcapacity bus system...

https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid....17554,0.41851
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:09 PM
 
Location: NJ
136 posts, read 210,965 times
Reputation: 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by ALackOfCreativity View Post
I think the question you then need to ask is:

1) Who is paying for it?

2) What is the value-add for them?

Newark, with about a quarter of a million people and not that strong of a tax base, is certainly not going to pay for a 15 billion dollar project (as per your numbers) itself. Meanwhile, people from outside of Newark don't really have a substantial problem related to the status quo of transit in and out of Newark. Anything in Newark you'd want to take advantage of -- the universities, airport, prudential center, financial district employers, etc. -- are readily accessible by driving, which most people in the nearby suburbs do. Driving into/out of and around Newark is not nearly as bad as NYC where you have to cross the Hudson and then deal with driving in NYC, parking etc. The big value-add is mainly for people living in the city who don't drive, and as mentioned above, they are not going to be paying the bill. You could throw in commuters to Newark in the nearby suburbs too, but the value for them is relatively lower (see: driving) and even with them included you don't have the tax base to afford this.

So then we have that the people who would be paying (residents in the state outside the city) don't really get a nearly sufficient value-add from better access to what's already there, and we come to your next argument, that it would create a major boom in a sort of build-it-and-they-will-come effect. However, if state taxpayers more broadly are paying for this, and if people buy that argument and think that it would be worth the cost, the next obvious question becomes why Newark? If you buy the build-it-and-they-will-come argument, the opportunity cost of implementing something like this in Newark would be implementing it somewhere where you could have all of the benefits without being dragged down by all of Newark's existing problems. Further, you could do it somewhere closer to NYC and already having more momentum (read: JC and the golden coast) or somewhere further south which wouldn't trigger the inevitable north/south political divide that helped kill the ARC tunnel.
As a whole most people are fine accepting the status quo in regards to things that do not directly affect them. Someone from Vernon could in all likely hood care less about the turnpike widening and someone from cape may could care less about HBLR. But because of the mutual benefit that these projects will provide to near by residents and the state as a whole they are worth it.

In terms of paying for the project a number of ways to fundraise could happen. Inorder to pay for this, there would need to be a collaboration at all levels of government (local, county, state, federal). On a state level if the (extremely low) gas tax were doubled it would bring in an additional 700 million dollars a year in revenue which is more than enough money to bond for the project. Then use the revenue in future years to pay off the debt. On a federal level there are all sorts of funding mechanisms that can be used to fund a project like this. On a county level a fractional sales tax percentage can be instituted to raise revenue for the project (.25% increase). Finally, localities can set up special tax areas around the new rail lines and tax properties in the zones a little extra each year which will help raise revenue. This is a project that can be done and should be done and in doing so will catapult Newark into its own sphere and allow it to become an economic powerhouse that NJ so desperately needs.

Why Newark? Not only is it the states largest city but it also has quick, frequent, and easy connections to lower and midtown manhattan (Path, NJT, Amtrak), its own major port, a major airport that is 10-15 minute from the CBD, a stop along the NEC with frequent connections to all major cities in the North East, Easy access to a large and robust workforce (via NJT, PATH, the new LRT/HRT system, turnpike, I-78, I-280, GSP, and the turnpike) Which makes it the most accesible city in the state. There is also many more state residents living near Newark than any other city in the state. Doing it further south or east would give up many of these advantages and dilute the effectiveness of the project. And you are absolutely correct the only way for this to be truly effective is to swamp Newark with police at the same time the system is being built inorder to drive down the crime rate and make Newark more attractive to corporations.

And the whole "we have already thrown hundreds of millions into Newark" argument really does not hold much water. An example to debunk this theory is if you started your own company and have $1 million invested but you are not quite at profitability yet. If you invested an additional $200,000 you would be wildly successful. You would not just walk away and take the million dollar hit but rather spend a little more to make your initial investment bear fruit. Much of the state money has been squandered thus far with out a doubt but unless you do something drastic to get Newark "over the hump" it will continue to be a money pit along with every other NJ city.

Try not to think of this as Gentrifying, as gentrifying is simply the movement of people into a poor area when they get priced out of another area. I am not talking about newark becoming hippie central but rather, for lack of a better term, its own Manhattan. Newark being a thriving city with a vibrant night life. A larger and more filled out skyline with numerous additional companies moving in from either out of state of the suburbs.
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:30 PM
 
Location: NJ
136 posts, read 210,965 times
Reputation: 131
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexis4Jersey View Post
That plan is a bit to big , heres the official plan by the RPA/NJT , it would be a spoke system out from Newark Penn Station using all the abandoned Railways , wide streets and underground lines.

-Extension of the Newark LRT along the NS orange branch between Grove Street and West Orange
-Extension of the Newark LRT along the NS Orange and Boonton Branch between Grove Street and Kearny's proposed Kingsland Branch station
-Newark-Paterson LRT , along the lightly used Newark Branch , servicing Belleville , Nutley and Clifton
-Newark-Cranford via EWR LRT , Subway under Broad Street to EWR station , Elevated through EWR , then at grade from Jersey Gardens to Cranford along old ROW
-Newark-Elizabeth LRT , follows the perv line above till EWR station then uses center part of Hwy 27 to Midtown Elizabeth
-Springfield Ave Subway LRT , runs from just west of Washington Street on the main line to Vauxhall or Summit via old Rahway RR ROw
-Newark-Jersey City LRT , runs from Newark Penn station to West Side Ave via a Subway under the Ironbound and bridge over Newark Bay along old ROW
-Newark-Rutherford Streetcar

This plan will cost around 6 billion and carry around 480,000 people a day , half will be new riders the rest will be current riders moved around the overcapacity bus system...
]
Yes my plan my be big but it is ambitious. While I admit I am in no position to turn my vision into action it is an interesting vision that would transform Newark. No great feat was ever completed without thinking outside the box. it does not make sense to have the entirely of the rail system based out of going to Newark penn, especially since it is on the fringe of down town. That would leave much of downtown uncovered by rail. I see a Light rail line to JC at this point kind of pointless. There is already the path making the trip between JC and Newark. It would be smarter to connect Newark to the towns around it than spend the money to build a bridge connecting Newark to Greenville. Also the Cross Essex line does nothing in particular. There happens to be an old ROW that is sitting unused so there is a plan to use it. The problem is it does not connect to anything of importance. It really only connects residential areas to other residential areas. That is the problem with relying of old ROWs. Towns grew up avoiding the tracks the the built up almost wall around the tracks to try and segregate themselves. For this reason running LRT down an old ROW is not nearly as effective as running it down (or under) a busy street where development would already be oriented toward the new trains. The only time buses truly work is when they are commuter buses and those don't provide the all day connectivity that a rail system would provide.

If the plan you posted would draw 240,000 daily riders I feel as if my plan would draw close to 1 million daily rides.
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Old 06-09-2013, 09:31 PM
 
10,098 posts, read 17,904,124 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bhsx1187 View Post
In terms of paying for the project a number of ways to fundraise could happen. Inorder to pay for this, there would need to be a collaboration at all levels of government (local, county, state, federal).
Taking a whole bunch of money from everyone in the state and the country just to throw into Newark? Not going to fly politically, and that's a good thing.

Quote:
This is a project that can be done and should be done and in doing so will catapult Newark into its own sphere and allow it to become an economic powerhouse that NJ so desperately needs.
Newark's problem isn't transportation. Building more transportation isn't going to bring Newark up.
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Old 06-09-2013, 10:11 PM
 
225 posts, read 334,533 times
Reputation: 328
Quote:
Originally Posted by Guidance100 View Post
I can't picture Newark ever seeing any gentrification.

Unfortunately, it's not close enough to Manhattan to see that benefit. Jersey City and Union City would have to fully gentrify first before Newark can even hope to attract any higher income residents since those areas are much closer to Manhattan and would obviously see demand much sooner (plus, both these areas are huge with a lot of real estate). Jersey City (minus the waterfront) is in the very early stages of gentrification and Union City pretty much hasn't even started gentrifying at all.

Another thing that many ppl don't take into account is that unfortunately New Jersey has a stigma attached to it. This doesn't mean much to most ppl but to most Hipsters (the main gentrifiers) who can be obsessed with image/labels/status, this means a lot.

I understand that there have been some improvements to Newark but unfortunately if anything, Newark seems like a likely future destination for the low-income ppl priced out of NYC since it has the lowest rents/cost of livings in the Tri-state area and offers a similar way of life of where most low-income ppl come from (the same could be said for Irvington and East Orange).

Maybe if Newark's downtown see's an unexpected massive increase in commercial activity then maybe *some* luxury housing could be built in the immediate downtown area but there is no indication of this happening.

I truly do wish Newark the best.
I disagree with this post. Before I tell you why let me just say that I do not mean to come off as combative and I am not singling you out but I do notice that you are using a certain logic that I have seen time and time again in this debate and I don't think that, that logic holds any water. It seems to me that your perception of Newark is not really up to date. The people who are pessimistic about Newark often state that while they understand that there have been limited improvements, they believe that there are no new developments for anyone other than the "most low-income ppl". That's just not true. In the past few years there has been significant development in the way of market rate rentals in downtown Newark. Here are some links that provide information on market rate developments in downtown Newark. Keep in mind that these links were ones that I was able to pull up immediately but there are additional developments that are either recently opened/under construction/or in various planning stages.

RockPlaza Lofts - Newark Loft Apartments & Retail on Market Street
Newark OKs early plan to revitalize the Four Corners downtown district | NJ.com

The development from the first link has not only sold out every apartment but it actually has a waiting list of over 200 people. If your wondering who would have a need to live in downtown Newark the answer is college students. One thing that people forget about Newark is that it has five colleges/universities and thousands of students. Hipsters are not the only demographic who can gentrify an area, you know. Catering to college students can go a very long way in revitalizing a city. Just look at New Brunswick for evidence of this. According to the universities in the city, demand to live on campus has been rising in recent years. Both Rutgers and NJIT are expanding. Rutgers is converting old skyscrapers downtown into dorms and NJIT is revitalizing the entire neighborhood around their campus. With the influx of college students comes the need for more places to eat, more entertainment options, book stores, clothing stores etc. You can see the positive benefits starting to take effect in the form of new restaurants that have been opening downtown.

Now this is just one example of how Newark has been getting better. I could also go into things like the high profile events that the city has hosted in recent years, the gentrification of the Ironbound neighborhood, the artists community that has sprung up along Halsey St., the expansion of business in the city including Prudential, Panasonic, Audible.com, Wakefern, Maneschewitz, Cablevision etc. but if I'm not careful I could be here all night. I will say one last thing though.

I think when people think of the development in Jersey City they seem to think it just popped up overnight but that is not true. Even though it has only gained more attention in the past 5-7 years, redevelopment in Jersey City has been going on since the 80s with the Newport development. If you asked people about revitalization in Jersey City back in the 90s, most people probably would have said "what revitalization". Just because most people didn't know it was happening, that doesn't mean Jersey City was not revitalizing. Newark is where Jersey City was back in the 80's - 90's. Redevelopment is happening in Newark, it just has not gained any attention yet but it will. Little by little redevelopment has been picking up speed especially in the past 2-3 years. People are going to be hearing a lot about Newark in the near future.

Last edited by montycench; 06-09-2013 at 10:22 PM..
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Old 06-09-2013, 10:43 PM
 
225 posts, read 334,533 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nybbler View Post
Newark's problem isn't transportation. Building more transportation isn't going to bring Newark up.
Actually, you'd be surprised. Improvements to mass transportation have proven to be very effective in revitalizing urban areas across the country. College students, young professionals, and other similar demographics are much more likely to populate an area with access to public transportation because they don't need to worry about having a car in an urban area. It is convenient for them to move to an area near a subway or light rail stop so they can easily get to their job downtown.

A lack of transportation, especially in low income areas has proven to be a problem in the past. At the height of urban renewal, one of the major problems was the fact that highways were cutting urban neighborhoods off from the rest of the city in order to favor suburban commuters. As a result, these neighborhoods had no access to any amenities they might need on a day to day basis (grocery stores, banks, job opportunities etc.). Since these were low income neighborhoods not many people could afford cars so without mass transportation many people were just stuck in a neighborhood that could not adequately sustain them. This was one of the factors that led to civil unrest and eventually the race riots.
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Old 06-10-2013, 07:29 AM
 
2,389 posts, read 1,845,964 times
Reputation: 2718
I like the plan to connect Newark's suburbs to Downtown and then eventually consolidation.
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