Hoboken In Mid-90s

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When I first moved into Hoboken in 1995, lived at 609 Bloomfield. It was a typical Hoboken townhome (not a brownstone), which was designed for a single family. Our landlord decided to divide it into 3 units, a basement & first floor unit; a second floor unit; and a third floor unit. On the first floor lived 2 college friends with 4 other people. My two college friends and I found the second floor apartment through them.

Our apartment wasn't designed to be a single apartment when it was originally built, and there were some modifications to it - like a very small bathroom with a standup shower. It was the worst shower ever. The shower head came up to my chest (i'm 6'3) and for me to wash my hair I had to duck under the shower head every morning. How miserable. Also the kitchen was pathetic, the stove was about 40 years old and looks like it was cleaned 39 years prior. My "bedroom" was really a hallway - we stuck my twin bed into the middle niche in the wall and in order to get from the second "bedroom" to the living room - you had to walk thru my "bedroom". My privacy was a joke.

This lasted about 8 months until 5 people in Apartment 1 decided to move out. They had two floors and 5 "bedrooms". I use the term "bedroom" loosely because like Apartment 2, the "bedrooms" were orginally designed as closets or dining rooms or living rooms. Apt 1 had 5 bedrooms, two in the basement which were about 8x7. The upstairs had a closet like bedroom which was 8x6, a dining room turned bedroom which was 9x10 and the living room bedroom which was 13x10 (the last people there doubled up in that room).

I don't remember exactly what the total rent was, but my room, the living room bedroom was $500 a month. I know each room were cheaper, like $425 for the dining room, $350 for the other 3 closet like rooms, I believe. I took the larger room and it was pretty sweet. I could fit a couch into the room, and installed an ISDN line for my high-speed internet access. Remember this was 1995 when dial-up modems were only things that geeks used. I got my ISDN line, which ran at 128K digital and would use Bell Atlantic (pre-Verizon) for my internet access.

It was, for all intents and purposes, a fraternity house. Everyone was 22 or 23, and Hoboken, in those days, were really all about drinking. I could clearly remember going to any pub on a weekday night and other 22-28 year olds were out drinking. Monday night. Tuesday night. Wednesday night. People were getting loaded until midnight, 1 or 2 am all across Hoboken. The youthful minority was a fairly sizeable number in town and everyone was in the same boat - just out of college, either working or looking for a job and single.

The town itself was, in my opinion, just starting to blossom. There were a lot of seedy-hole in the wall businesses. But some newer restaurants and bars were starting to emerge.

Some people will get nostalgic and miss those "old days". I can see how the demographics of the town are changing towards more of an older, more wealthy residents. The bars just aren't packed like they used to be with mid-20 something patrons. The new stores that open up simply reflect what the new demographics want. Nail salons. Sushi restaurants. Real estate offices. Hey - a Jamba Juice is coming soon.

Still doesn't stop my dream of seeing a Hooters open up in Hoboken.

2 Comments

I started living in the Hobe in 2000 and I've seen it change as well. According to hoboken411.com, the cremalita is becoming a realty store and Riviera is becoming a Wells Fargo. Soon Washington will be a strip of banks and realtors.

Is there really a Jamba Juice coming in? If so, where?

Jamba is moving to where Venue was located on 5th and Washington

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This page contains a single entry by Furey published on June 7, 2006 12:17 AM.

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