Board to consider concept plans presented for amphitheater and black box theater

A committee of the Arts District Advisory Board will review concept plans for projects at the Hamilton Laundry and Bell Building sites. City Engineer James Housten will present plans this week in preparation for developing cost estimates on the two projects.

Housten told Redevelopment Agency commissioners at their meeting this month that a report is expected shortly on the monitoring wells currently on the Hamilton Laundry site. Soil from some areas likely will need to be moved, he added.

Bids to demolish the home adjacent to the Hamilton Laundry site should be introduced at the January City Council meeting and approved in February, he said.

The Bell Building (photo above) might actually catch up and pass the Hamilton Laundry project depending on environmental remediation, Housten said, adding that environmental issues already taken care of at the Bell Building site.

A 1,000-seat amphitheater at the former Hamilton Laundry site is expected to break ground next year while a black box theater and performing arts space is planned for the Bell Building. The Hamilton Laundry project is among eight sites in Rahway eligible for state funding as a Brownfield Development Area.