May 2, 2022
TRENTON, NJ (MERCER)–Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora said the city is looking for Request for Proposals for the Eagle Tavern as announced at a press conference this morning in front of the old tavern. The historic tavern is located at 429-431 South Broad Street near the CURE Insurance Arena. A PDF file of the RFP is below.
Some history of the Tavern provided by the mayor’s offices stated that researchers haven’t been able to substantiate the various tales of George Washington visiting this tavern, but we know it overlooked the American Revolution.
When Robert Waln purchased the surrounding Trenton Mills property in 1765, detaching from William Trent House estate, Waln became a big-shot mill owner without a swank home. So, he built the first version of this place. He operated it as a tavern and hotel intermittently until 1900, and it was likely used in the withdrawal of British and Hessian forces in the First Battle of Trenton.
Mayor Gusciora stated that the Eagle Tavern is one of the city’s oldest buildings, and we want to make it new again. We’re hoping to find something that’s befitting of the property and that contributes to the City’s revitalization.
We released this RFP and sent it directly to some of the sectors we hope to find interest in, like:
NJ Brewers Association
Restaurant & Hospitality Association
American Institute of Architects
Brewers Guild of New Jersey
New Jersey Builders Association
Minority & Women Contractors & Developers Association
Gusciora stated we are building on our past — not only the colonial roots – but the rich history of the industrialized powerhouse of Trenton, and the work of predecessors to restore those economic engines.
Overall, we are building partnerships and working with those who want what’s best for Trenton. There are difficulties dealing with some City partners, and some opportunities are being lost. But on every front, we are fighting to uplift neighborhoods and turn vacant eyesores into vibrant new hotspots.
Roebling Block III
We’re still bringing new tenants into Roebling Block III, like Princeton Hydro, a 40-member engineering firm expanding and moving here from Somerset County. They are the first recipients of our Job Creation Loan run out of the Division of Economic Development. They are using the loan to purchase furniture and equipment. A portion of the loan may be forgiven if they have Trentonians on the payroll once they ramp up—either hiring current Trentonians or having staff move to Trenton. Their office is across from Roebling Lofts and is part of the commercial mixed-use development.
This entire project was a large collaboration between the City, Mercer County, the NJ Department of Environmental Protection, and the US Environmental Protection Agency.
Roebling Block II
Now, we’re up and running for redevelopment at Robeling Block II, with our RFP already bringing in fabulous visions for the famous industrial complex, dating back to 1849. This is part of the historic Roebling Wire Works, founded in 1849. By World War I, the factory was the largest wire rope plant in the world. The buildings on this property were built between 1885 and 1957, are currently zoned for mixed-use, and have existing open floor plans ranging from 6,000 to 52,000 square feet.
Van Sciver Building
Last year, we had groundbreaking ceremony at the historic Van Sciver Building, a project that’s part of the New Jersey State Capital Partnership and financed by the New Jersey Housing & Mortgage Finance Agency. We’re talking about a state-of-the art mixed-use building with underground parking, more than 100 residential rental units, and over 7,500 square feet of retail space opening onto a plaza overlooking the creek. In the early 1930s, this was a furniture business by the Historic Mill Hill District. And 40 percent of these are affordable housing units.
And finally, we’re making huge strides on the sale of the downtown Taxation Building. We’re going to revitalize the 10-story, 230,000-square-foot office building in downtown Trenton that was the longtime home of New Jersey’s Division of Taxation.
Photos and video by: Brian McCarty, OnScene News