Hoboken To Introduce Plan Amendment To Preserve Neumann Leathers Buildings

Rendering Courtesy of Hoboken City Hall


Plan proposes 70,000 square foot industrial arts space, new retail and commercial properties, outdoor and indoor public plazas

The City of Hoboken is moving forward with the introduction of an amendment to the Neumann Leathers Redevelopment Plan, which proposes to preserve and rehabilitate 118,000 square feet of the historic Neumann Leathers Building along Observer Highway. The plan seeks to retain and enhance the existing industrial arts community in the Neumann Leathers Building, while constructing new, active mixed-use properties to enhance the local neighborhood.

The plan amendment proposes 70,000 square feet of rehabilitated industrial arts space, the creation of 76,200 square feet of new commercial and retail properties, 51 units of affordable and workforce housing, an extension of Grand Street to Observer Highway, stormwater infrastructure to reduce localized flooding, a 32,500 square foot outdoor public plaza and a 9,500 square foot indoor public plaza. The adopted redevelopment plan calls for reduced rents for industrial arts tenants.

The proposed plan amendment will be introduced on first reading to the Hoboken City Council at the regularly schedule Council meeting on Wednesday, March 3 at 7:00 pm.

“After years of negotiation, I’m pleased that Hoboken has finally produced a revised plan that not only preserves one of Hoboken’s most historic areas and supports our vibrant arts community, but also provides substantial community benefits including new, mixed-use retail areas and public open space,” said Mayor Ravi S. Bhalla. “This plan is a win for our City and I thank the Office of Community Development for their hard work, as well as the council sub-committee members for their assistance.”

“Hoboken has seen its share of cookie cutter development over the last few decades and I’m proud to say our plan for the Neumann Leathers Complex breaks that mold,” said First Ward Councilman Mike DeFusco, Chair of the Southern Development Subcommittee. “This innovative adaptive reuse elevates makers, creators, artists and innovators while respecting the needs of the surrounding community. Just like Ponce Market in Atlanta, or Union Station in Denver, Neumann Leathers will remain a landmark in Hoboken for generations to come.”

The City of Hoboken invites residents to join a virtual special City Council community meeting on the plan amendment, which will be hosted by Hoboken’s Office of Community Development on Monday, March 8 at 7:00 pm. The meeting will also be broadcasted live on the City of Hoboken’s Facebook page.

The proposed plan amendments also include the construction of 310 new residential units, the reconstruction of two mixed-use buildings in accordance with historic standards, and 204 parking spaces. The proposed residential building does not exceed the allowed maximum height allowed in the adopted Redevelopment Plan.

The plan, which covers an area approximately 3.29 acres surrounded by Observer Highway, Newark Street and Willow Avenue, specifies design standards for all new and rehabilitated buildings to mitigate rainfall flooding. The plan calls for the inclusion of green infrastructure design standards that include underground detention systems, above ground green infrastructure, green roofs, and more to reduce combined sewer overflow (CSO) events.

The Neumann Leathers Rehabilitation Area was designated as an Area in Need of Rehabilitation by the Hoboken City Council in 2014. The Neumann Leathers Redevelopment Plan was originally adopted by the Hoboken City Council in December 2015. The Hoboken Department of Community Development and City Council sub-committee have been negotiating with the property owner, Neumann Leathers Redevelopment Group since 2016 on the details of the redevelopment project, which are reflected in the proposed redevelopment plan amendments.

According to the 2015 Redevelopment Plan, R. Neumann and Co. was founded in 1863 as a producer of fine leather and leather goods. The original four-story factory was constructed on the northwest corner of Willow Avenue and Ferry Street, known today as Observer Highway. Although leather production ceased in the last Century, descendants of the original Neumann family have owned and operated the buildings until 2014. Since the 1980’s, the complex has become a hub for small businesses and artists in the City, and by 2008, when the Neumann Leathers Tenants Association (NLTA) was formed, was filled with tenants.

Click here for the proposed amendment to the Neumann Leathers Redevelopment Plan.

Click here for the 2015 Neumann Leathers Redevelopment Plan.


Instructions for participating and providing public comment at Neumann Leathers Virtual City Council Meeting

Please be advised that due to the current State of Emergency due to the COVID-19 outbreak, and in accordance with guidelines issued by the State of New Jersey for public meetings during this time, the March 8, 2021 City Council meeting will be held virtually and will be available to the public via the following platforms:

Public portion will be held virtually after the presentation for any general comments or comments on resolutions. Comments will be limited to 5 minutes in total. All written correspondences to the City Clerk will become part of the record.

*Please limit all statements to a maximum of 5 minutes. *

Thank you for your patience and understanding.


Zoom Directions:

In order to use the Zoom platform to join the meeting, you can join via desktop or smartphone app at the following link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/85347160737?pwd=eG9yRCtrVS9HckIxNHZyQjBiOE1wZz09

You may also use a direct phone line to connect to the Zoom meeting with the following information:

Phone: 1 646 876 9923

Webinar ID:  853 4716 0737

Passcode: 516564

International numbers available:  https://us02web.zoom.us/u/kesv2rXhpx


Please follow these steps to join Zoom by desktop or app:

  1. Click on the link above to enter the webinar meeting.
  2. If for some reason you are having trouble with the link, go to zoom.us and on the top right corner, click “Join a Meeting”
  3. Once prompted, enter the meeting using the webinar ID number: 853 4716 0737
  4. You may be prompted to enter your email.
  5. You will be placed in the waiting room until it is your time to speak. You will be instructed when it is your opportunity to speak.
  6. Please watch the Zoom Chat for further instructions from the Hoboken Moderator.