Sunday, September 21, 2008

welcome to the nabe everyone!

Two weeks ago, Metrostop eased open the doors to its new owners. It's been months since HH has profiled the tallest building in northwest Hoboken, so I figured it was time to share with you some new (and a few old) pictures. And for those of you who recently moved in, I know you're dying to forward on some pics to your friends and family. So here you have 'em. Ready, set, GO:

Below is the official front entrance for residents. Seems a bit understated for a building of this magnitude, but nonetheless it's clean and fuss free:

The doors open to reveal a minimal lobby - elevators on the right, mailboxes on the left. They've chosen interesting lighting fixtures that are quite modern, and some extremely attention grabbing furniture:

A very commanding presence! When I first saw the new sitting areas, I imagined the furniture coming alive in the middle of the night ala Beetlejuice sculptures to terrorize residents. Probably won't happen. But you know once the sun goes down those chairs are going to scare the hell out of the children who live there.


Back outside on Jackson Street, we can see plenty of large growth trees that were planted, both on the curb side, and along the building. They've also mushed in boxwoods and some other fledgling shrubbery. This foliage will help disguise the two story parking garage (above and below ground). I've been trying to overlook their decision to put in such old school depression era bush bed borders that couldn't be more wrong for such a modern building, but I'm still having a hard time coming to terms:

The trees are going to be gorgeous in a few years, but I am a little worried about how close they were planted to the building. The maintenance man is going to have fun pruning back these babies:

Pachysandra was planted in very large swaths all over the place. Teeny tiny ones. Should fill in nicely and eventually will work towards conveying the 'green' message - it will spread everywhere in a few years:

Here's a great example of the trees that were chosen to line the sidewalk. They are common to the area. They also get to enjoy free skies above, and will be spared the chainsaw in future years, because there are no power lines above them.

Ever wonder why trees are always planted on sidewalks DIRECTLY beneath power lines? Makes absolutely no sense. Anyway, I digress:

May take a few to provide some adequate shade though :)

A little farther south are very long steps, for loitering, sunning, and relaxing:

And also apparently, for skateboarding:

Here's the southeastern view. Notice the unique shape of the building, and the very wide sidewalks. This is a major thoroughfare for foot traffic, so it was necessary to keep it open and roomy. Soon the official Metrostop signage will be installed to the right at this corner:

Here's the new 8th Street oversized sidewalk that leads to the entrance to the light rail. To the right, a cornucopia of greenery, bordered by hand laid stonework. A nice touch:

Love a good grass plant. They should plant many more of these to soften things up:

At the top of the steps is a new raised area that takes up a large portion of the southern half of the property. Beautiful pavers have been put down, with a chic border stone, and some random street lights scattered about:

Extreme paver closeup, taken during installation:

There's a grassy area that gets great sun. I think this is supposed to be the official sculpture park, but there's no sculpture yet. I can't believe we have grass in the neighborhood! If you squint your eyes and plug your ears it almost feels like the suburbs!

There are, however, several large stone benches, that look very cool, except I feel like a four year old when I sit on them. They are SO HIGH my feet don't touch the ground. It's actually pretty funny. I wish they had sunk them lower into the ground:

It's still a beautiful touch though. I can see people hanging here in the warm weather, relaxing after work. And the south side of this building, which you can see in the image below, will be home to Amelia's Bistro - a restaurant that will offer brunch, lunch and dinner, complete with outdoor seating. The neighborhood is dying for this restaurant to open. Any updates on this, please drop HH an email:

Supposedly Amelia's Bistro is opening in October, but something tells me they are behind schedule. Here's how the restaurant looks these days. Even with a kitchen build-out, it's a pretty big space. And all the windows are actual swing doors that fully open up to the outside air. Next summer is going to be heaven when this thing gets going. To wet your appetite, click here to drool over the menu of their Jersey City location:

Along the rear of the building - it's very clean and architectural. I love the lines of the building, and the interesting use of glass and brick. There's an additional entrance to the light rail, which is very convenient. And they exterior lighting, seen below, creates a beautiful glow at night, all around the building. Great job:

Also in the back, not exactly visible in the below picture is the gym on the second floor. You can also catch glimpses of parked cars both above and below you, especially at night when you can easily see through the tinted glass.

On to the north side of the building - and clearly the most commanding:

When we first saw the renderings for the building, we figured this would be the official residence entrance, because of the sheer scale of it, but it's actually an additional retail space, long rumored to be the future home of Starbucks:

Hopefully one way or another, we'll get confirmation on when and what will be going into this space. Developer and Starbucks are both mum at this point. Beautiful double height columns that overlook the future park going in on 9th Street along the light rail. Meandering pathway, dog run, etc.

A perfectly symmetrical facade which I love. I get lost staring at how perfect it is:

Back on the ground after a quick shake of the head, we see that the north side of the property also features the new 9th Street light rail entrance, and a maze of hand rails, fencing, and twisty turns. A month ago, it looked ... uh ... ummm ... just a tad bit restrictive:

But since unlocking the gates, and with a few steps back and a nice deep breath - the entrance, complete with stairs and a handicap ramp, actually looks very pleasing to the eye:

Stepping back even further to the street, perspective really sets in. This building is large and in charge. But it's well done, with lots of glass, interesting nooks and crannies, and tons of details to keep your eyes full. There are lots of balconies hidden all over the place. And remember, the views above 7 are all of New York City. And along the western side of the building - every single view is of simply ... trees. Big beautiful green lush trees. Pretty rad, considering no other condo building in Hoboken has such a unique view. It must trick your mind into thinking you are in the woods. What peace it must afford...

Metrostop is a beautiful addition to the neighborhood. Each day, as more and more owners move in, the building is slowly coming to life. As we ease into fall it will be exciting to see how the neighborhood continues to transform itself. There are some units left for sale, and now that the building is open, there are open houses and tours going on each day.

Can anyone say block party?

Friday, September 19, 2008

story of the week

Click here to read all about an unfortunate light rail ticket experience that ended up in jail time!

NJ Transit has yet to install a ticket machine and stamper at the 9th Street entrance to the light rail, which is the entrance HH uses. Boy if I ever went through a similar experience, I can tell you with all confidence that I wouldn't be as patient.

Do you think they will ever install a ticket machine?

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

green living has its privledges

Seems as though Metrostop, the newest luxury condo building to come online in our quickly redeveloping neighborhood is providing more shade than previously anticipated. Click here to learn more.

UPDATE! Thank you for shedding some light on this topic!

Friday, September 5, 2008

time to practice our back stroke!

Good luck this weekend everyone, try and stay out of the flood waters.

We're going to go enjoy a nice meal outside somewhere, before the rain encroaches this evening. Then we'll either look around for Noah's Ark, or just go to Target and buy life vests. Or maybe those little floaty things you put on your arms when you're three.