If You Build It, They Will Come, Says Harrison NJ Mayor

“After 15 years, his vision to transform this long-forsaken industrial town into a bedroom community for single, young professionals is finally taking shape,” writes Ronda Kaysen. Hopes for redevelopment center on the town’s commuter rail station.

1 minute read

November 3, 2012, 7:00 AM PDT

By Erica Gutiérrez


Despite facing numerous redevelopment obstacles over the last 15 years, including delays due to September 11th, the economic crisis, and a million dollar tax dispute, developers and Harrison mayor Raymond McDonough remain steadfastly hopeful that the town will be the next best alternative for New York City commuters priced out of more traditional and trendier housing markets nearby.

The main catalyst for the town's redevelopment is a $256 million upgrade of its PATH commuter rail station, slated to start this year. "The jewel here is the train station. That's your raw material," says developer Jeffrey J. Milanaik. The town, thus, expects to see an increase in ridership in the next 10 years, from two million riders in 2011 to 2.4 million riders in 2022.

"We're creating a neighborhood from whole cloth and trying to give it a sense of place," says developer David Barry.

Aside from building new, and comparatively affordable rental housing with average rents priced at $1,863 (at least $1,000 less than in the competing communities of Jersey City and Hoboken), developers are also breaking ground on the 138-room Element Hotel, a 50,000-square-foot research and technology center for Panasonic, and thousands of square feet in retail space, reports Kaysen.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012 in The New York Times

Rendering of electric scooters, electric cars, light rail train, and apartments in background.

Arizona’s ‘Car-Free’ Community Takes Shape

Culdesac Tempe has been welcoming residents since last year.

February 14, 2024 - The Cool Down

Aerial view of suburban sprawl with large single-family homes near Dallas, Texas.

The Changing Shape of American Suburbs

Housing costs and availability are pushing more American households, including young families, to suburbs and exurbs — and they’re demanding changes.

February 13, 2024 - Business Insider

Aerial view of New York City architecture with augmented reality visualization, blue digital holograms over buildings and skyscrapers

4 Ways to Use AI in Urban Planning and City Design

With the ability to predict trends, engage citizens, enhance resource allocation, and guide decision-making, artificial intelligence has the potential to serve as planners’ very own multi-tool.

February 20, 2024 - ArchDaily

Google street view of wide grassy median in Beverly Hills, California.

Beverly Hills Installs First ‘Green Street’

A three-block median featuring native plants and bioswales is part of the city’s broader effort to reduce water consumption and pollution.

6 hours ago - Beverly Press

Habitat for Humanity volunteers in construction helmets buildign a wood-frame house.

Habitat for Humanity and Missoula Land Trust Team up on Affordable Housing

The partnership will ensure the new homes will remain affordable for future buyers.

7 hours ago - KPAX

Orange California poppies in bloom over gently rolling hills in Southern California's Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve.

Experiencing California's Antelope Valley Poppy Reserve

Located in the western Mojave Desert, this stunning state natural reserve is renowned for its breathtaking displays of California poppies and has even been referred to as California's most beautiful place.

February 22 - California.com

News from HUD User

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

The Walkable City

Harvard GSD Executive Education

New Updates on PD&R Edge

HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research

Urban Design for Planners 1: Software Tools

This six-course series explores essential urban design concepts using open source software and equips planners with the tools they need to participate fully in the urban design process.

Planning for Universal Design

Learn the tools for implementing Universal Design in planning regulations.