Mayor Fulop Announces $44 Million Dollars for Additional City Hall Annex Buildings & Rebrand of The HUB to ‘Jackson Square’

Mayor Fulop Announces $44 Million Dollars for Additional City Hall Annex Buildings & Rebrand of The HUB to ‘Jackson Square’
When Completed, The New Annex Complex Will Represents a $69 Million Dollar Investment in Bergen-Lafayette 

JERSEY CITY – Mayor Steven M. Fulop was joined by State Senator Sandra B. Cunningham, Assemblywoman Angela V. McKnight and the Jersey City Council to announce the second phase of the City Hall Annex project, including two new buildings which will include municipal offices, community space, and a parking deck, as well as a rebrand of the HUB to ‘Jackson Square’. Together, the three buildings will represent a $68 million dollar investment in the area, the largest public investment the City has seen in decades.

“Today is an important day for the future of this neighborhood and this City, and I am proud to announce the second phase of a project that will continue to bring life and investment back to the residents of Bergen-Lafayette,” said Mayor Fulop. “We are taking an active role in shaping the future of this square through this major investment, and we are confident in the ability for this complex to bring economic activity and opportunity to an area that deserves it. With community space, a parking deck, and dozens of City offices, the new Jackson Square will become a central location for municipal and community activity, and I am incredibly excited to continue making progress here.”

The plans for the two additional buildings will be heard by the City Council at a first reading on Wednesday, April 25th. Once approved, the design of the buildings will begin immediately, with construction beginning in 6 months and completion expected within 12-18 months of the groundbreaking.

“I am so proud to stand here today to celebrate the opening of the City Hall Annex, and I am especially proud of the new name for the square, which represents two African American brothers who came out of slavery and settled here. This is an area that we are proud to support, and we want the community to be proud to live here too,” said Senator Cunningham.

The first of the two new buildings will be named after former Councilwoman Melissa Holloway, and will be located behind to the current City Hall Annex. The building will include a parking deck, meeting space, and a performance space available to the community. The building’s meeting space will be used for a variety of board meetings, including Planning, Zoning, Tenant/Landlord, and the Jersey City Redevelopment Authority. By including space for these citywide boards to meet in the Annex complex, the City hopes to encourage public engagement in the neighborhood, as well as bring evening activity to the complex on weeknights. Lastly, the second new building will include a community performance space that will be available for public use. The parking deck will be also available to the public after business hours and on weekends, helping to alleviate parking challenges of local residents.

The second building, which is located adjacent to the Annex, will be a rehab project of the existing building at 342 MLK Drive.

Between the two buildings, the City offices that will be relocated there include: Community Development, Housing Code Enforcement, Tenant/Landlord Relations, Commerce, Welcoming Communities, Office of Diversity, Office of Compliance, Resident Response representative, Mayor’s Office representative, and the Ward F Council Office.

In addition to the new buildings, the area now known as the HUB will be rebranded as Jackson Square, helping to bring new energy and excitement back to this section of MLK Drive. The Square is being named after Thomas and John Vreeland Jackson, who were freed slaves that settled in the area in 1831. During the Civil War, their home became a safe house and an important link in the Underground Railroad.

The City Hall Annex, which is financed through a lease-to-own agreement with the developer Brandywine over 25 years, was built at no cost to the city and will save approximately $700,000 in rent per year. The two subsequent buildings will be built or rehabbed through the same lease-to-own financing plan. In comparison to a traditional general obligation bond approach, the City will save $16 million through the lease-purchase agreement.