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.

Gun-wielding suspect drives robbery victim to bank with two young children in tow

April 11, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK - Rutgers police are investigating a lunchtime robbery on Tuesday in front of Campbell Hall, 617 George St., on the College Avenue campus, which involved two young children and a trip to a Somerset Street bank.

The victim, who is affiliated with Rutgers University, reported that he was walking near Campbell Hall dorm at 12:30 p.m. when a vehicle, ...

South Brunswick: Mayor Killmurray’s Funeral Plans Announced, Township Prepares For Administration Change

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ – Township officials announced funeral plans for Mayor Christopher Killmurray and plans to deal with filling his position and a second one on the Council.

Killmurray, 55, died at home Sunday morning after battling brain cancer for several years.

According to the township, a viewing is scheduled for 3-7 p.m. Wednesday at St. Cecilia’s Roman Catholic Church at ...

South Brunswick: Mayor Christopher Killmurray, 55, Dies

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ – Township Mayor Christopher Killmurray died at home Sunday morning, officials announced.

In an alert to residents, Township Manager Bernard Hvozdovic said that Killmurray, 55, passed away at home surrounded by his family after battling brain cancer for several years.

A Democrat, Killmurray was first elected to the Township Council in 2003 and served as deputy ...

Op-Ed: New Jersey’s Out-of-Network Bill is a huge blow to the middle-class

April 11, 2018

As Trenton currently looks to balance the budget, once again it’s our state’s hardest working citizens who will be left holding the bag. This time, though, it will be the hardworking office and ancillary staff from our small business private medical practices.  A bill called “The Out-of-Network Consumer Protection Bill” A-2039/S-485 looks poised to make ...

The Truth About My Reading

The Truth About My Reading

I didn't get my Composition and Literature teacher at Montclair State College at all. A crusty old man with a dour disposition, Mr. Smith always seemed angry and rude. He appropriately intimidated freshmen, even me, an English major, who found this common core course beneath my dignity. Frankly, as a graduate of Highland Park High School, and a survivor of Mrs.

The German Girl

The German Girl by Armando Lucas Correa (Washington Square Press, 2016)

For each of the twelve million victims murdered during World War II there is a gutwrenching story to be told. I have read hundreds of memoirs, biographies, plays, and novels that recount the stories of the martyrs; some are exceptional, some are fair. The German Girl by Armando Lucas Correa, an award-winning journalist, ...

State Attorney General Releases Princeton Panera Shooting Video

April 9, 2018

TRENTON – The Attorney General’s Office today released surveillance footage related to the March 20th shooting at Panera Bread in Princeton, New Jersey, during which state troopers fatally shot Scott L. Mielentz, 56, of Lawrenceville, N.J.

The shooting remains under investigation by the Attorney General’s Shooting Response Team (“SRT”).  However, certain ...

April 12 Webinar "Are You Stressing Your Horse Out?

Dr. Williams will be hosting the webinar "Are You 'Stressing Out' Your Horse? Understanding Types of Stress & How to Manage or Reduce Each."

The presentation will be next Thursday, April 12th at 12:p.m. To join the webinar go https://demo.bigbluebutton.org/b/rooms/ca-70ef9c13/EquineStressWilliams prior to the meeting. 

Test your connection early to ensure ...

Somerset: KPS Garage Offers Spring Time Special

Don't let the weather fool you Spring is here, and KPS Garage is offering a special new and existing customers!

1) Freewheel alignment with the purchase of four tires

2) Spring has Sprung Special $29.95

Change oil & filter 
Free tire rotation
Free 30 point safety inspection

exclusions apply

3) Free pair of Bosch wiper blades with any service or ...