Friday, December 30, 2011

Green Opera House update!

There is hope yet for Woodbury's once grand 1880 Green Opera House! Just when it looked as if the final curtain call had been announced, RPM Development Group have entered into an agreement with the city to redevelop the building into a mixed-use retail and living space. RPM have an impressive history of effective adaptive reuse of historic structures with a goal to provide quality housing while aiming to improve neighborhoods. The city has recently negotiated a purchase from current owner, Dick Hill for $1 and have agreed to pay $50,000 of the over $300,000 owed in tax liens. A bargain considering the quotes nearing one million just to have the building torn down. Further details remain to be ironed out, but it is looking very hopeful.

notice the original iron cresting and finials along the roof lines

I personally feel this is the exact sort of thing needed in the area as not only does it structurally preserve a beautiful Victorian Opera House, but will bring folks to our downtown, increasing foot traffic and patronage to our local shops. 

Interested in helping support the cause? Stephanie L. Cherry-Farmer, MHP Senior Programs Director of Preservation New Jersey, suggests ways to help such as letters to the editor in support of the announcement, and some letters to the city encouraging their demonstrated creativity.

Please send your letters of support to:

City of Woodbury
City Council
33 Delaware Street
Woodbury, NJ

You can also address it to the Mayor Ron Riskie, or Councilman Harry Trout.