New Jersey has always been in New York’s shadow. The state has been the topic of mob connections and gambling adventures. But the state does have some bright spots. The seaside resorts attract millions of sun worshippers during the summer. The economic stability of New Jersey has always been questionable. Governor Chris Christie was supposed to be the economic savior of the state, but he turned out to be more of an economic thorn than a rose. New Brunswick, the home of Rutgers University, is one of those small towns in the state that is trying to attract more business, but it seems that city is getting a taste of the challenges that have plagued New Jersey for years.
The New Brunswick Development Corporation, also known as DEVCO the non-profit corporation, has played a major role in urban real estate development. DEVCO has managed more than $1.6 billion in real estate investments in the state. Devco has a history of successful ventures, but anyone that is familiar with the real estate market knows no developer bats 100 percent when it comes to picking the next best development project.
In 2005, DEVCO was involved in turning the old Heldrich Hotel into a modern hotel and convention. The renovated hotel opened in 2007, but it failed to attract enough guests because of the looming recession that stopped everything for months and the real estate market for years. According to a recent article published by NorthJersey.com, The Middlesex County Improvement Authority failed to make a $1 million payment on the $20 million loan it received to renovate the Heldrich Hotel from Casino Reinvestment Development Authority.
The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority is backed by DEVCO. According to the article, the Improvement Authority has missed several payments over the last five years that total more than $7 million. A spokesman for DEVCO said the CRDA is going to be paid, but it may take a few years.