Bloomberg, the financial software, data, and information company founded by the man who would later become mayor of New York, is poised to substantially expand its offices at 431 Ridge Road in Dayton. The planning board for South Brunswick Township, which includes the Dayton neighborhood, unanimously approved a preliminary plan on December 18 calling for Bloomberg to add up to 200,000 square feet (and up to 1,000 jobs) over the next 10 years.
A representative for Bloomberg, which has had a significant presence in the greater Princeton business community since the mid-1980s, including its facility on Route 518 in Montgomery Township, told the planning board that the project will be constructed in six phases on a 65-acre tract bounded by Ridge and Culver roads.
The property had previously been occupied by AT&T, which had acquired Teleport Communications located at the site. Before that it was an IBM facility, which had caused some environmental contamination at the site due to the disposal of ink used in making cards for keypunch machines. Bloomberg indicated it would continue any required remediation work at the site.
The project is also expected to be accompanied by improvements to the adjoining road network, including the five-way intersection that includes Georges, Ridge, and Culver roads. Changes are expected in traffic light timing and additional traffic lights will be installed on Route 522. In addition, the expansion of Route 522, already in progress, is expected to help with traffic at the expanded Bloomberg site.
Bloomberg began its connection to central New Jersey in 1984, when Mike Bloomberg was introduced to John Aubert, who along with his wife and son ran a company based near the Princeton Airport that collected sinking fund data (information about how companies and governments pay off debt incurred from the sale of bonds) and put them into a book called “Sinkers.”
Three years later Sinkers was acquired by Bloomberg, and the data collection effort began to grow in the Princeton area. Eventually the firm moved into two new buildings on Business Park Drive, off of Route 518 in the Skillman section of Montgomery Township. Zoning squabbles with township officials may have influenced Bloomberg to buy the tract of land in Ewing that now houses the Princeton South corporate center.
Bloomberg paid a reported $14 million for the land, invested some time and money in the development process, but never made the move. In 2006 it sold the property for $21 million.
The question now is whether Bloomberg will continue its presence in Montgomery or consolidate all its central New Jersey operations in South Brunswick. A Bloomberg representative forwarded the information request to the public relations department for a response, which was not received by press time.