The top 10 Rahway Rising posts of 2013

There are two things that people will remember about 2013 (at least according to traffic on this site): the hotel closing and the mayor resigning. If you look at the Google Analytics for 2013, the graph has a steady pace until September when it shoots up like a rocket and then comes back to Earth. Of course, there were other things that occurred in 2013, like construction under way on the 116-unit Metro Rahway and pending completion of another project, the 108-unit Meridia Water’s Edge.

Here are the top 10 posts from 2013:
1. Mayor submits his resignation: After a tumultuous few years, Mayor Rick Proctor finally submitted his resignation in September, faxing a brief letter to the city clerk. It wasn’t so much a surprise that it happened but just the fact that the shoe finally dropped. Elected in November 2010, Proctor took office in January 2011 and by mid-year there was turmoil within the administration and butting heads with City Council. By the end of his second full year in office, the city administrator was bought out to avoid litigation and Proctor only lasted another nine months after that.

2. Hotel Indigo leaving, could convert into apartments: August was the first time the news broke (right here at Rahway Rising, as usual) that Hotel Indigo would leave Carriage City Plaza by Sept. 15 while the property’s owner floated an idea to convert the three floors of the downtown complex into 68 one-bedroom units.

3. Pizza poll results: Your favorite pizzeria: The results may vary a bit each time we put out this poll, but talking about which place is our favorite and why always draws a crowd.

4. Indigo now vacant, officials press for new hotel: The owners of Carriage City Plaza don’t seem too keen on having a hotel as part of their property but city officials still are pushing to have them bring in a new flag for the 102-room facility.

5. Senior housing facility to open this summer: The Jack and Margaret Myers Senior Residence, a 51-unit complex on Esterbrook Avenue adjacent to Divine Mercy (formerly St. Mary’s), opened in July after several years of planning and construction. This one kind of surprised me in that it was ranked so high but perhaps it says a little something about demand?

6. Campbell Street demolition to begin next month: Metro Rahway has long been talked about, going back almost a decade, and pre-recession the original concept for Station Place (as it first was dubbed) was to encompass the entire block. But those plans are long gone, and even the original plan for 80 condos was scuttled when the housing market tanked, replaced with the idea of 116 rental units; either way, the project finally broke ground this year after the demolition of A&M Industrial Supply.

7. Poll results: What’s your favorite restaurant in Rahway?: Just as with our pizza poll, when you ask people what their favorite restaurant is, they always have something to say — in a good way!

8. Poll: What new development is most appealing? Readers sure do like our polls, even if this one didn’t get too many votes cast. I often get this question from readers and in emails, about which developments and buildings are best, or the pros and cons, so I thought this one would make a good poll. I also thought it’d be a good way to gauge interest in what people like or dislike (Psst: More Park Square, less Lafayette Village), perhaps to provide some type of input in the city’s future planning. Maybe we’ll try again.

9. Third West Grand Avenue site targeted for acquisition: This was another post that snuck into the top 10, rather surprisingly (at least to me). It’s a smart program (Blue Acres) though it didn’t strike me as especially exciting news. Of course, maybe it benefited in searches for Hurricane Irene and/or Sandy.

10. Proposal would put 250 units on Center Circle site: The most ambitious proposal for City Hall Plaza since the pre-recession plans to relocate City Hall and make way for Town Center, a massive mix of residential, retail and hotel complexes. The 248 units would be within three, five-story buildings and also include a through street running past the Recreation Center and Library from East Milton Avenue to Main Street. The plan, however, is still closer to the conceptual phase and hasn’t yet been before the Planning Board though the redeveloper has been designated.

These were the most widely read posts that appeared in 2013 but that doesn’t mean that older posts weren’t read during the past year. Some older posts that continue to get traction despite their age include our annual compilation of crime statistics, background on the construction, ultimate foreclosure and acquisition of Carriage City Plaza, and 6-Eleven on West Grand Avenue must enjoy good search results and/or social media mentions because it’s still typically a well-read post. Heck, even this brief post about pizza from 2009 is still running strong.

The rankings are based on Page Views as calculated by Google Analytics. Other metrics displayed rankings a little different (for instance, #10 ranked higher and #9 ranked lower) but all in all I thought Analytics was the most trusted, from what I’ve heard.

Thanks to allĀ  of you for reading in 2013. It’s especially gratifying to get the occasional thanks for keeping up this effort. I can’t even believe I’m saying this but Rahway Rising is now more than six years old and never would I have imagined it would still be going (of course, it helps to have a real full-time job to pay the bills). We haven’t made too many changes over these last 74 months but there have been some tweaks lately with a more serious overhaul coming soon. Hope you enjoy the changes.

Best wishes to all for a healthy and prosperous 2014.

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3 thoughts on “The top 10 Rahway Rising posts of 2013”

  1. I enjoyed nearly every post, as they represent the most continuous and in-depth coverage of the doings in this city.Il look forward to continued coverage in 2014 (and whatever improvements!).Thank you for this terrific and valuable work.

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