More about the development after the break.
Yet, the project has also received its fair share of criticism. For starters, many are opposed to the notion that teachers from any of the city’s charter, district, and independent schools may move in, not just the three “more traditional” schools opening in close proximity. And, although set for teachers (200 spots for the city’s 6000 professionals), some are concerned non-teachers can technically move in. Some also argue that teachers may not want to live as close to their school – although for those who do rent, the apartments will offer very affordable pricing. However, no matter which professionals are taking permanent residence in the area, the city will benefit from a more diversified population and the mixed offerings of the complex are a step toward rebuilding the vibrancy of this former metropolis.
And, of course, there’s the whole issue of cost. To keep the cost of Meier’s vision within budget, Beit explained, “We made them the Target line, if you will. We knew how much these buildings were going to cost, we knew what the teachers were making, and we backed into what we needed to do on the public investment side to make this work.”
For Newark-native Meier, the project represents the opportunity to restore the city and put it back on the map as a destination filled with cultural, retail and residential offerings. The complex will benefit from city’s earlier efforts to attract visitors, such as the Prudential Center and the NJPAC, and those taking residence will hopefully establish strong roots in the area and strengthen the relationship between education and quality of city life.
For more on the project and its design, please refer to our previous coverage.