Boraie Development has paid $1.75 million for a series of lots next to its Atlantic City apartment complex, 600 NoBe. Wasseem Boraie said in an email that he bought it “just to clean up the area and fence it off so people don’t park cars there anymore,” adding that it “looks ridiculous next to our fully occupied beautiful 600 NOBE!” The newly-acquired lots sit to the Inlet side of the apartment complex.
Hot food will once again be on offer on Pennsylvania Avenue. Sister Jean’s Soup Kitchen, which closed three years ago, now has city approval to reopen in a new location on the same street, but further away from the beach and tourism district. Sister Jean’s moved into St Monica’s Church at 108 N Pennsylvania and has been operating as a food pantry, a closet that provides used clothing and the home to a large community garden run by Communities Revolutionizing Open Public Spaces (C.R.O.P.S.). According to the organization’s website, building work is being done at the church in order to open the kitchen, and, “Take out meals will be an option soon.” People connected to the organization did not respond to further questions about the planned reopening date. Sister Jean’s original location on the corner of Pennsylvania and Pacific Avenues closed in February, 2019.
The Atlantic City Ballet canceled two shows in a row. An official at the ballet declined to comment about the cancellations when we sent an email. A performance of Carmen was canceled with two days’ notice last month and the March performance of a Midsummer Night’s Dream was canceled the day of the performance. Although comments were disabled on the ballet’s Facebook page, some dancers expressed their frustration with the cancelations on social media, commenting that they were also informed at the last minute. The ballet company was formed by Phyllis Papa in 1982.
Atlantic City’s proposed design for a microgrid to generate power in the event of a blackout is three times more costly than other designs for microgrids proposed across the state. And unlike other towns’ proposals, the only critical building Atlantic City’s microgrid would power is the hospital.
3301 Arctic, the red-brick former auto-service and barbershop building across from Sovereign Ave school, sold for $300,000 at the end of last year. It’s now available to rent and owned by a shell company named for the address and registered to Joseph Rodriguez of Williamstown. (Pictured)
School regionalization studies. The Department of Community Affairs is now accepting grant applications from school districts that want to consider merging with a neighboring district. The deadline to apply is the end of June.
A woman-owned and pharmacist-operated cannabis dispensary called The Healing Side has filed an application to open behind Boardwalk Hall, in a building that was last occupied, 15 years ago, by a Papa John’s and a cash-for-gold shop.
When might it open? It could still be a while. The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority is (still) in charge of planning decisions in Atlantic City’s Tourism District. A CRDA official said a hearing was conducted on March 3 and the CRDA board is expected to vote on The Healing Side’s application at its April 19 meeting.Atlantic City has a dispensary (The Botanist) open to people who have a medical marijuana card. The city has also published rules that will govern cannabis businesses (everything from cultivators to wholesalers to distributors and retailers) in Atlantic City.
Empty Lots Watch… Atlantic City’s newest redevelopment area is a small rectangle of land on Atlantic Avenue, between Mansion Avenue and the Vietnamese restaurant Com Ga Ninh Kieu. The city-owned property is vacant and used as parking space (see image below). According to the public notice, a conditional redeveloper (unnamed) was appointed. What’s the plan? I don’t know.
The Atlantic City Aquarium has been closed since…before the pandemic. But now—we have (some) news! The City of Atlantic City this month awarded a $1.3 million contract to Weatherby Construction for renovation work at the aquarium.The original plan was for visitors to be able to visit the aquarium this summer. But according to the renovation bid documents, the reopening date has been changed to November 1st.The Aquarium is getting a new roof, as well as having its electrical and HVAC systems replaced, new windows and floors installed, exhibit upgrades and a gift-shop revamp. These are the first major repairs at the site in more than 20 years, according to the Atlantic City Executive Council.
In the South Jersey suburbs, people are turning to gardening to relieve lockdown boredom and produce the fresh food that is in short supply in local stores. But what can you do in an impoverished city that is already classed as a food desert and that suffers from flooding, soil contamination and other gardening hazards?
This time of year, Lucky Dog Custom Apparel should be printing out piles of T-shirts for high school seniors, baseball teams and graduation parties, but as the coronavirus pandemic spread in March and events were postponed and sports cancelled, owner Cindy Pitts realized she and her six employees would have to find a new way of doing business.
Of the 23 confirmed Atlantic County fatalities from COVID-19 complications in Atlantic County, 10 were residents in long-term care facilities. Five of the recent fatalities were at Egg Harbor Care Center, a for-profit rehab center in Egg Harbor Township. New Jersey figures released on Wednesday showed 12 other residents at Egg Harbor Care Center tested positive for the coronavirus. An official at the Egg Harbor Care Center did not respond to a message seeking comment. In a 2017 Medicare inspection report, the center was cited for failing to follow appropriate hand hygiene, but its most recent inspections have been clear of deficiencies.
Our goal this fiscal year is to be less sour, slightly more sweet, than the last time we all got together. To that end, we’ve obligated ourselves–like Odysseus lashed to the mast–to putting these emails out when we have a critical mass of our own content to share with you. So you can count on fewer Route 40 emails, but will they have more vim and originality? Watch this space.