Middlesex County News

Middlesex County Eyes Buying 2 Floors in Cultural Center Tower for $12 Million

17ad40eeb36295cbcc87_cultural_center_may_3.jpg
An architect discusses on May 1 plans for a downtown performing arts center in New Brunswick.
17ad40eeb36295cbcc87_cultural_center_may_3.jpg

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ — If all goes as planned, Middlesex County will own two floors of office space in the performing arts center that’s slated to sprout in downtown New Brunswick.

The Board of Chosen Freeholders introduced an ordinance last week that would take $17.5 million from previously issued bonds to buy the real estate on Livingston Avenue and pay for various road improvements and engineering services throughout the county, according to the document, which TAPinto New Brunswick obtained yesterday.

The purchase of office space in the New Brunswick Cultural Center redevelopment project is projected to cost $12 million, County Administrator John Pulomena said during the board’s May 4 meeting.

Sign Up for E-News

“The investment we’re making there is directly related to having ownership of two floors to put our people there for many years to come,” he said.

Middlesex officials have already committed $6 million to fund the $167 million project, which stands to yield a 22-story tower with two performance theaters, multiple rehearsal spaces, office space and 207 apartments. A conjoined parking garage would also crop up on Bayard Street, according to the New Brunswick Development Corporation, better known as Devco.

County staffers who work in art and culture would relocate to the building after construction cedes in July 2019, Pulomena said.

Business-development and communications employees might also move to the performing arts center, Pulomena said.

When questioned by a resident about the price tag, Pulomena said the acquisition will save taxpayers money by avoiding the need to lease office space. Over 20 years, he said, leasing could run double the cost of buying property.

“It’s more effective to own our own facilities than to lease space and get no value to that,” he added.

Freeholder Charles Kenny said the board considered buying just one floor in the building. But because Middlesex officials “don’t know the future needs” of the county, they thought it best to not limit themselves to one floor, he said.

Should some office space wind up vacant, the county could use it to make money, Pulomena said.

“Where we are not going to use the space, we have the ability to lease that space out and use that money to fund the day-to-day operations,” he said.

The remaining money covered by the proposed ordinance would finance capital improvements in the majority of the county’s municipalities. That list includes upgrades to Ryders Lane and Clifton Avenue in New Brunswick.

A public hearing on the ordinance is scheduled for the freeholders’ 7 p.m. May 18 meeting in the county administration building on Bayard Street, New Brunswick. Residents may ask questions about or comment on the move at that time.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Brunswick-Cranbury

Police Blotter

South Brunswick and Cranbury Police Blotter

August 9, 2017

Sponsored by Reilly's Collision Center in Monmouth Junction. Click here and scroll down for the latest updates and alerts from South Brunswick and Cranbury Police.

See the most recent messages from South Brunswick Twp Police Department, powered by Nixle.

Upcoming Events

Sun, February 25, 11:00 AM

East Brunswick Jewish Center, East Brunswick

PurimFest

Arts & Entertainment Other Religions And Spirituality

Sun, February 25, 1:00 PM

St. David's Episcopal Church, Cranbury

Organizing for the 2018 Mid-terms: Elections, ...

Education Giving Back Government

Sat, March 3

New Jersey Dance Theatre Ensemble, Summit

NJDTE Summer Dance Intensive & Young Dancers ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

Nutley Police Department: Video Does Not Contain Direct Threat to Nutley Public Schools

February 16, 2018

NUTLEY, NJ - The Nutley Police Department report that the video that led to Nutley Public Schools being closed did not post a direct threat to any of the township's schools.

Police report that the person responsible for the video has been cooperating with the Nutley Police Department in their investigation. Interviews are on-going, The department is also investigating all ...

East Brunswick Business Owner Sues to Stop New Hotel Going Up in New Brunswick

February 16, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ -The owners of an East Brunswick hotel are suing to halt the construction of another such establishment a few miles away in New Brunswick.

Shan & Dylan LLC, who own a Comfort Suites just off Route 18, filed suit in an effort to press the New Brunswick Planning Board to rescind its approval of the four-story hotel, which ​was issued in November.

That proposal calls for ...

South Brunswick: Volunteer Soccer Coach Charged With Possessing And Distributing Child Pornography

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ – A volunteer youth soccer coach and former Sunday school teacher is charged with possessing and distributing child pornography, officials said Thursday.

FBI agents and local law enforcement arrested Waldo Milla-Guerra, 49, at his Kendall Park home Thursday morning after executing a search warrant, officials said.

Milla-Guerra, a volunteer soccer coach with the ...

Rutgers to Host Exhibit of Sen. Frank Lautenberg Papers

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Frank Lautenberg, New Jersey’s longest-serving U.S. senator, left an outsize imprint on state politics and national policy by the time he died while in office, in 2013.

His papers, now curated and maintained by the Rutgers University Libraries, encompass 2,250 boxes of hats, buttons, campaign stickers, vinyl records, paper documents and other artifacts that, laid end ...

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper with Danny Pellegrino (St. Martin's Press, 2017)

It's hard to go on a serious diet, one on which you expect to be successful and maintain a loss. Fortunately, in his new book Super Carb Diet, Bob Harper has given the weight watching world a sensible new diet plan to help achieve a healthy weight.

Harper, host of NBC's popular show The Biggest Loser, ...

Two Nights by Kathy Reichs

Two Nights by Kathy Reichs (Bantom,2017)

How does a writer of a beloved series like Harry Potter or Temperance Brennan break out of their readers' expectations and try something new? For J.K. Rowlings it was the novels penned under the pseudonym Robert Galbraith; books about a maimed and very flawed private detective with the unlikely name of Cormoran Strike. For Kathy Reichs, it is the ...

Author Donates Portion Of Sales To Equestrian Aid Foundation

February 18, 2018

WELLINGTON, Fla. — Author Shane Ledyard will donate a portion of the paperback sales of his latest book, “Sycamore Whispers,” to the Equestrian Aid Foundation through February.

Equestrian Aid Foundation provides financial assistance to horse people from all corners of the U.S. equestrian world who are facing catastrophic injury or illness.

Purchase “Sycamore ...

Cuba Goes Country

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

RELEASE: “Cuba Goes County” to be held at The Palmer in Cuba, NY.

For more information or to schedule and interview, contact Theater Manager Michele Conklin at (585) 209-5512.

The Palmer Opera House is hosting “Cuba Goes Country” on Sunday March 11th- at 2:00 PM

Come join us for a boot stompin', toe tappin' afternoon of country ...

Rep. Watson Coleman Statement Following Whistleblower Report on Baseless Attacks on Planned Parenthood

WASHINGTON, DC - Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ) released the below statement following the letter sent by Ranking Member Elijah Cummings (D-MD) to the Department of Health and Human Services Deputy Sectary, Eric Hargan. The letter outlines documents regarding an effort by the Trump Administration to allow states to terminate Planned Parenthood as a healthcare ...

How to Talk with Kids About the Florida Shooting

February 15, 2018

Guest Column

The tragedy of the Florida school shooting is devastating leaving 17 killed and 15 injured. Our children can easily identify with what occurred yesterday. It will be the topic of conversation today in schools everywhere. School administrators are doing all they can to provide support and guidance. The shootings affect children, teachers, and school personnel. The ...