HOBOKEN - The Zimmer Administration says it will move municipal garage operations from the uptown Willow Avenue location back to the Observer Highway garage. The city attempted to sell the Observer Highway garage to S. Hekemian Group, a developer, in August, but claimed S. Hekemian breached the contract and interfered with the environmental testing that needed to be done to complete the sale.
To show the city’s intention was to sell the garage, the city vacated the Observer Highway garage on Aug. 13. Since that time, the garage has sat unused while the city moved forward with a shared services agreement with Weehawken at the uptown, Willow Avenue garage location.
“Discussions are ongoing to pursue alternative shared services at the Observer Highway site,” according to a city press release.
The city signed a 60-day contract with the possibility of extensions at the Willow Avenue location.
A city press release on Monday read, “As of Sept. 26, 2010, when the initial 60 day contract with Willow Avenue, LLC expires, the City of Hoboken will be vacating its municipal vehicles from 1714-16 Willow Avenue and relocating operations back to the Public Works Municipal Garage on Observer Highway.”
Hoboken has been fighting a legal battle at the Willow Avenue location, where a lease by Hoboken Unleashed, a pet daycare company, was already in place for the uptown property. Hoboken Unleashed has not moved into the property, but has paid the landlord a monthly rent to keep the property exclusively in the name of the pet daycare company.
According to a city press release: “Today, Interim Corporation Counsel Mark Tabakin wrote to Hoboken Unleashed and Willow Avenue, LLC to inform them that the City will be vacating the property by September 26. Willow Avenue, LLC has agreed to waive the 30 day notice provision on the contract. In addition, Tabakin sent a letter to Judge Thomas Olivieri informing him that there is no longer a need for future court proceedings as the City is vacating the premises as Hoboken Unleashed had requested.”