Traffic Jam

Corrections or additions?

This article was prepared for the October 6, 2004

issue of U.S. 1 Newspaper. All rights reserved.

Between the Lines

What does a fashion show in downtown Princeton have to do with

commercial real estate? For one thing the fashion show, by Chantal

Palmer, a 34-year-old fashion designer who has her offices on

Witherspoon Street, will take place at Princeton Writer’s Block on

Saturday, October 9 – and it coincides with our biannual commercial

real estate issue.

But Palmer and her fashions also put a face on a commercial real

estate market that often is forgotten in the excitement over the boom

on Route 1. She calls her downtown environs the "SoHo" of Princeton

and she thinks it’s a marketable concept. "Princeton wants New York to

be in their backyard," says Palmer. "They don’t want to get on the


In addition to designing clothes, Palmer also wants to foster

entrepreneurial growth in Princeton. In her group of Witherspoon

Street-based entrepreneurs, many of them women, are Jessica Durrie,

owner of Small World Coffee, Paige Peterson and Michelle DeHaven of

the boutique Rouge, and Lana Breygina, owner of Onyx Nails (page 42).

Palmer has some interesting ideas about how the borough could provide

more support for entrepreneurs. "Lotsa luck," you might say. But every

once in a while government, big or little, does step in to help.

Case in point: the federal government has just dramatically increased

the number of Foreign Trade Zones in the Princeton area. Some

landlords are hoping that the FTZ designation will attract new tenants

(see page 12).

Meanwhile our twice-yearly commercial real estate listings (page 13)

reveal the latest trend in upscale office parks – the rehab of

buildings that could have been discarded as white elephants. Windsor

Corporate Park started this trend with a re-do of the old GE Americom

property. Now the American Metro Center is acquiring some impressive

tenants.(page 27). And on a smaller scale, Princeton University’s old

chemistry building on its Forrestal Campus (not the Forrestal Center,

but the campus on which Princeton Plasma Physics Lab sits) has been

given a new look by Ford Farewell Mills & Gatsch, the first tenant.

So if your business is looking for its first space – or a different

space, these listings are a trove of information. Not only do we list

the price you would pay per square foot, but also the total amount you

would pay per month for that space. Hint: gross rent takes care of

most expenses except your electric bill, whereas for net rent (or

triple net) you pay the extras. If the building is both for sale or

rent, you will find it in the For Rent column with the sale price


Top Of Page
Traffic Jam

Last week’s traffic issue is over and done with – except for a gremlin

that jogged the arm of the chart maker. If you just skimmed our graphs

of past driving times, you got the general idea that this year’s times

were slightly worse, but had you looked closely, you would have been

puzzled by some graphic glitches. We apologize and would be happy to

fax you the correct version.

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