CAMDEN, NJ— This year Camden saw its fair share of ribbon cuttings and steel toppings. The progress of the Rowan University Rutgers-Camden Board of Governors Joint Health Sciences Center and the Camden Tower were celebrated over the summer.
In the spring, Subaru opened its new headquarters in the city, and this December American Water celebrated its new facility along the Camden Waterfront. The ribbon to Alberta Woods Park in East Camden was cut this fall, and a new Walgreens Pharmacy and Chase Bank opened on the ground floor of the Rutgers-Camden Nursing and Science Building.
Next year is shaping up to be the same as 2018, with a number of projects expected to begin or be completed in 2019. Here are nine to watch:
Comfort Inn on Linden Street
In September, the Camden City Zoning Board approved an application from Spectrum Capital to build a 122-room, four-story Comfort Inn on the 1.9-acre triangular lot between Penn Street, Linden Street and N. 11th Street. The project is expected to cost $20 million and bring 40 new jobs to the city. Construction will begin once all permits are acquired, and the hotel is expected to take 12 to 18 months to build.
Old Camden Public Library Building Renovation
Millennial Partners, LLC will transform the 10,000-square-feet old Camden Public Library into a reinvented space for diners and businesses. The development company, which was designated the property’s redeveloper in 2017, received city planning board approval this October to turn the historic building into two office spaces and an almost 4,000-square-feet, 40-seat restaurant on the ground floor. Construction is expected to begin in the first quarter of 2019, and take about a year to finish. No major changes are expected to be made to the exterior of the building.
Campbell’s Field Demolition
By the springtime next year of 2019, Campbell’s Field will be no more. This November, the Camden County Improvement Authority awarded a contract to R.E. Pierson Construction to demolish the abandoned ball field that was once home to the Camden Riversharks. The space will be turned into a multi-purpose athletic facility that will include fields for baseball, lacrosse and field hockey to be used by Rutgers University–Camden’s NCAA Division III and club teams, along with the Camden community as a whole.
Hilton Garden Inn along the Camden Waterfront
Construction is expected to begin on the 180-room Hilton Garden Inn in 2019 and be completed in 2020. The hotel is part of Liberty Property Trust’s $1 billion Camden Waterfront Project, which includes the now-open American Water Headquarters, the soon-to-be-open Camden Office Tower and the soon-to-be-open 11 Cooper Street apartments. The hotel will include conference space and a full-service restaurant.
Improvements to Federal and Market Streets
Camden County was awarded $10 million from the New Jersey Department of Transportation’s Transportation Trust Fund to improve the flow of traffic along Federal and Market streets in downtown Camden. It will also focus on the interchange at Flanders Avenue and Federal Street, which provide access to and from Route 30 near Subaru’s new headquarters and the Campbell’s Soup headquarters. Along Federal and Market streets, the project will look at potentially changing the one-way traffic on both streets into two-way traffic, along with replacing existing traffic signals with new equipment and controllers and installing dynamic message signs. The interchange at Flanders Avenue and Federal Street will be reconfigured to improve operations and safety, which could involve realigning and reconstructing the current westbound Route 30 on- and off-ramps.
The new home for the three New Jersey companies Conner Strong & Buckelew, NFI and The Michaels Organization is expected to be completed in the spring of 2019. The 18-story, 394,164-square-foot building is currently under construction along the Camden waterfront. Over 10 years, the three companies will earn nearly $250 million in tax incentives under the New Jersey Economic Development Authority’s Grow NJ program for their move to Camden. Conner Strong & Buckelew will earn $86 million, and both NFI and The Michaels Organization $79 million.
Rowan University Rutgers-Camden Board of Governors Joint Health Sciences Center
The 95,000 square foot building, located at the corner of Martin Luther King Boulevard and Broadway, is expected to be completed in the spring of 2019 and bring $72 million in economic impact to the City of Camden. The multi-institutional building is the first of its kind in the state, where students, teachers and administrators from Rowan University, Rutgers-Camden, the Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, the Rowan University School of Osteopathic and Camden County College will all have a presence in the facility.
4th and Washington Park
County and city officials broke ground on the $1.4 million renovation of the Lanning Square park this October. It is the second city park, out of four, that is part of Camden County’s $5 million revitalization effort to upgrade and improve parks in Camden. The first park completed under the plan was Alberta Woods Park in East Camden. The park is expected to be complete in the spring.
11 Cooper Street Apartments
Also part of Liberty Property Trust’s $1 billion Camden Waterfront project, construction on the 11 Cooper Street Apartments has been underway and is expected to be completed in the spring of 2019. The project will feature 156 residential units and ground-level retail space.