Observer Boulevard is Coming!
Every time I show a property around Observer Highway, Newark Ave. and Jackson Streets my buyers are (rightly) concerned about the “traffic-y” feel of the neighborhood. There are a lot of large and 3 bedroom units in the new buildings over there and my buyers often have small children. It can be incredibly hard to cross the street at many of those intersections, especially with a double-wide stroller and toddler in tow.
The section of Jackson Street between Newark Street and Observer Highway is actually supposed to be a single lane of car traffic – similar to nearly every other street in Hoboken. Unfortunately, the “No Parking” regulations and a very wide loading area on that block have allowed drivers arriving from outside Hoboken to use this the road as if it were two lanes, at great risk to pedestrians, cyclists and other drivers. Accident rates at this particular corner have been extremely high compared to other spots in Hoboken. The concern of residents is evident by the lengthy discussion on the HobokenMoms group about a recent accident there.
The new Jackson Street bike lane has reduced the lanes of cars down to one and traffic has been reduced with fewer accidents since it was installed. Many more and very significant changes are in the works. Most of you are not aware of them. Recently, the City of Hoboken took steps to clarify the single-lane designation on Jackson Street and to calm traffic by returning parking to both sides of the street, repainting parking striping, and adding the bike lane as part of the city’s “complete streets” approach. All of these measures were unanimously approved by the Hoboken City Council.
The bike lane installed on the first few blocks of Jackson Street is the beginning of a continuous bike lane that extends all along Jackson. Bike lanes have been proven effective to slow traffic. This one also provides access to Hoboken from neighboring municipalities where many of people travel for work and pleasure and to better serve the lower income communities that depend on bicycling as an important means of transportation to get to their jobs.
The City of Hoboken has $1,800,000 in federal funding to redesign Observer Highway – and rename it Observer Boulevard. Here is the plan for what is to come as part of the “Complete Streets” redesign. Things in that part of town are going to change for the better. Smart buyers will understand that though there are real problems there now, the improvements soon to come will only increase the desirability of those properties. That, my friends, is an opportunity!