One of the key problems I have with the Zimmer Administration is the lack of progress for any development in our city. We watch businesses get boarded up on Washington Street and other businesses take years and years to get development through zoning to open new, vibrant offerings for our residents. Meanwhile, Jersey City is literally eating our lunch - every week I have to read about a great restaurant or store that opened there.
By blocking development, we hurt our city in many ways, like home values. Don't take my word for it - brownstones in downtown Jersey City have surpassed Hoboken brownstones.
One recent example is that Shake Shack was blocked from developing a brand new restaurant on Washington Street. Instead we get to keep our "beautiful" parking lot next to the Walgreens.
Yes, I say "beautiful", but we all know it is an eyesore. With the restaurant development, there would have been parking available at a discounted rate for Walgreen customers at a parking garage 800 feet away.
One commissioner sniffed that, "we don't need another burger joint on Washington Street".
That's the problem. We have comissioners who would rather keep the status quo, and block any new development unless it matches their opinion of what THEY deem is good for Hoboken.
I bet if we had an informal poll that a broad majority of residents would gladly welcome a Shake Shack at this location. From what I understand the building would have been just as tall as the brown apartment to the left of the picture, and that was the reason it was blocked. It needed a variance to be as tall as an existing building that has been there for 80+ years.
I was a big fan of the Zimmer administration and they have done some great things while in office, but I feel like they have been a HUGE failure when it comes to infastructure planning. The zoning board is a product of Dawn Zimmer's adminstration and the city council - they do everything they can to block new, exciting projects.