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The Powerhouse
Jersey City
-Hamilton Park
-Van Vorst Park
-Exchange Place
-Paulus Hook
-Harsimus Cove
-Port Liberté
The Heights
-Western Slope
Journal Square
-Bergen Square
-McGinley Square
-Marion Section
-India Square
-Five Corners
West Side
-Lincoln Park/West Bergen
-Society Hill
-Hackensack Riverfront

The Powerhouse Arts District is a neighborhood in Downtown Jersey City, New Jersey, which takes its name from the unused generating station Hudson and Manhattan Railroad Powerhouse. [1][2]For a time, called WALDO, an 11 block section of historic warehouses, some of which have been redeveloped. It was part of the The Horseshoe.

The Powerhouse is north of Paulus Hook, west of Harborside Financial Center, and borders Harsimus and Newport, Jersey City. The Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company Warehouse at Provost St. between 1st and Bay Sts.40°43′16″N 74°2′25″W / 40.72111°N 74.04028°W / 40.72111; -74.04028 (Great Atlantic and Pacific Tea Company Warehouse) The Pavonia-Newport, Harsimus Cove, and Harborside stations of the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail are in or near the district.


The A & P Warehouse

WALDO, an acronym from Work And Live District Overlay, was the name of a planning strategy adopted into Jersey City zoning in 2002 per a proposal written by the Urban Land Institute, and was deleted from the zoning on January 24, 2007. As the name implies, the purpose was to most effectively re-use an eight block area of industrial buildings, and transition them to include more residences, without zoning them a purely residential use. Currently, most zoning codes do not allow industrial and residential uses to co-exist on the same lot. The district also aimed at retaining the high bulk, low rise industrial buildings which were threatened by development of high rise towers in the area.

The plan indicated that roughly half of the apartments built in the existing industrial buildings in the eight block neighborhood must go to artists. Under the district plan, two industrial buildings were renovated into loft apartments, and one new building, Waldo Lofts, was constructed. During the district's lifespan, there were several attempts to bring in more housing and studios for artists, to make the area more pedestrian friendly, and to bring in art schools or museums. There were also been proposals to turn the Powerhouse into residences, shops, galleries, and museum space.

Most of the proposals for retail and gallery space never materialized or found tenants, and as a result the eight blocks of industrial buildings remain much the same as in 2002 when the district began. As well, the city approved spot zoning development of a large development on First Street which deviated from the district plan. Spot zoning is proposed for several other blocks. Most proposed developments are higher rise structures, and the majority of capital investment in the district favors high rise development. These factors led to WALDO being removed from the zoning ordinance.

An older "Waldo" in Jersey City has survived the zoning strategy. This is Waldo Avenue, which runs south from New Avenue to "The Island" a remnant outcropping of Bergen Hill, which in turn overlooks the Waldo Yards, originally used by the Pennsylvania Railroad Jersey City Branch, and now by Port Authority Trans Hudson mass transit trains.

See also




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