Odd construction: downtown steakhouse

5/6/2010 Update:

A building inside a building

Updating this Reader Photo from a few months ago, I noticed a peculiar process happening at the upcoming steakhouse which is supposedly taking the old Downtown Pub spot at Observer and Paterson.

They were building a shell around the old building. Why not just level the entire thing?

Regardless, no Hoboken 4th Ward representative now or in the past (Zimmer, Lenz) – nor is the current Mayor (Zimmer) “fighting” for a park in Southwest Hoboken anymore. That, of course, was one of the campaign slogans you all bought into (and a 25% tax cut, and transparency, and “reform,” I could go on, but you get the point that things turned out much different that voters had expected.)

See original Readerpix: “I’ll take my park medium rare” after the jump…

12/30/2009:

Hoboken411 reader Luca sent in this picture of Hoboken’s dwindling Southwest Park! Happy New Year!

Hoboken411 reader photo of the day – 12/30/2009

Luca didn’t know what was transpiring in SW Hoboken, so I kindly sent her a ton of informative links on Hoboken411.com. She now knows how the city operates! Show your love at the polls next time, Luca!

Anyway, what we now know, is that the SW Parks initiative seems to have been abandoned by the current administration, and well, look at the bright side – carnivores have more traffic-clogging ways to ingest grilled animal meat! God bless America!

Hoboken steakhouse where a park was supposed to be

[Stay tuned for the next Readerpix entry! – Note: one reader’s photo(s) will be featured from time to time. Unless your photo is time-sensitive – it will be published in the order it was received! Additional note: Your pictures will have a better chance of being published if they’re in “landscape” mode, as opposed to the taller “portrait” modes… ]

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20 Comments on "Odd construction: downtown steakhouse"

Downtown
Member
Downtown

I am surprised this post isn’t updated for the recent activity. In more recent posts h411 seems to think it is crazy that the building is being torn down but it is clear from this string that there was some sketchy maneuvers from whoever was “renovating” the old Downtown Pub by putting up a building around it.

As much as I would love to see a good steakhouse downtown it sounds like the developer tried to pull a fast one and simply didn’t get away with it.

homeworld
Member

Zoning scam.

veggiespam
Member
veggiespam

If they “fix up” the old space, the taxes won’t go up (much). If they tear and rebuild, taxes would be based on the building’s full cost. Could someone dig up the tax records from before they started this construction and compare to the new tax value to see if it goes up; say $20 like that building where they added an entire story.

There could also be set-back rules that are grandfathered in to existing structures, the south side touches the sidewalk. New building might need XY foot clearance – thus smaller building.

iforgotmymantra
Member
iforgotmymantra

I have 4 guesses. (1) This is grandfathered in as a commercial use, but once they remove the structure and start from scratch they would be subject to current zoning laws; (2) Something to do with the transfer of the liquor license; (3) There is evidence of a crime in the older building that will be removed quietly and then the building destroyed; or (4) there is a valuable fixture that the steakhouse wishes to incorporate in its design that cannot be removed.

escaped68
Member

There is some thing about leaving 1 exterior wall up and in place, if not new zoning laws then come into play.

In response to iforgotmymantra who said:
I have 4 guesses. (1) This is grandfathered in as a commercial use, but once they remove the structure and start from scratch they would be subject to current zoning laws; (2) Something to do with the transfer of the liquor license; (3) There is evidence of a crime in the older building that will be removed quietly and then the building destroyed; or (4) there is a valuable fixture that the steakhouse wishes to incorporate in its design that cannot be removed.

iforgotmymantra
Member
iforgotmymantra

Usually the non-conforming footprint needs to be in place. I know someone with a house under Highlands jurisdiction who can’t even reconstruct a crumbling pool because it would mean building it out 6″- and any build out is prohibited. Basically, once the part of the building that kept you in conformity w/ the older law is removed, you are out of luck. I have no idea what sort of code-dodging gymnastics are going on here (if that’s what it’s all about) but I’m sure the guys building the damn thing b*tch about having to work around this obstruction every day.

In response to escaped68 who said:
There is some thing about leaving 1 exterior wall up and in place, if not new zoning laws then come into play.

9
Member

A steakhouse three blocks from my apartment? ME HAPPY!

Hey, does anyone know why they’ve been building the frame of the new building on top of what used to be the Downtown Pub? That has been mystifying me since construction started on this thing.

plywood
Member
plywood

I heard it is the new Zimmer Civic Association.

In response to 9 who said:
A steakhouse three blocks from my apartment? ME HAPPY!

Hey, does anyone know why they’ve been building the frame of the new building on top of what used to be the Downtown Pub? That has been mystifying me since construction started on this thing.

Silva
Member
Silva

“They were building a shell around the old building. Why not just level the entire thing?”

It has to do with building codes. They’re only “fixing up” the old space.

In response to plywood who said:
I heard it is the new Zimmer Civic Association.

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