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Terminal Enterprises Inc. v. City of Jersey City

Decided: November 5, 1969.

TERMINAL ENTERPRISES, INC., ETC., PLAINTIFF, AND DAVID RODNON AND JOURNAL SQUARE BOARD OF TRADE, A CORPORATION, PLAINTIFFS-APPELLANTS,
v.
THE CITY OF JERSEY CITY, A MUNICIPAL CORPORATION, DEFENDANT-RESPONDENT. TERMINAL ENTERPRISES, INC., ETC., PLAINTIFF, AND DAVID RODNON AND JOURNAL SQUARE BOARD OF TRADE, A CORPORATION, PLAINTIFFS-APPELLANTS, V. BOARD OF CHOSEN FREEHOLDERS, COUNTY OF HUDSON, ETC., DEFENDANT-RESPONDENT



For affirmance -- Chief Justice Weintraub and Justices Jacobs, Francis, Proctor, Hall, Schettino and Haneman. For reversal -- None. The opinion of the court was delivered by Proctor, J.

Proctor

This litigation arises out of the adoption of an ordinance and resolution by the City of Jersey City (City) and the Hudson County Board of Chosen Freeholders (County) respectively, whereby the City and the County entered into certain agreements with the Port Authority Trans-Hudson Corporation (PATH) relating to the construction and operation of a proposed Transportation Center in the Journal Square area and to entrance improvements at the Grove-Henderson Street Station. The trial court granted the City's motion to dismiss for failure to state a claim upon which relief could be granted and the County's motion for summary judgment.*fn1 Plaintiffs filed a consolidated appeal,*fn2 and we certified the matter before argument in the Appellate Division.

In 1962 the Legislature passed Chapter 8 of the Laws of 1962 authorizing the Port of New York Authority to proceed with a bi-state port development project consisting of the Hudson Tubes, the Hudson Tubes extensions, and the World Trade Center. L. 1962, c. 8; N.J.S.A. 32:1-35.50.*fn3 In this legislation it was recognized that the Hudson & Manhattan Railroad Company, servicing the northern New York-New Jersey metropolitan area, was in an "extreme financial condition" and that its physical plant was "severely deteriorated." N.J.S.A. 32:1-35.50(3). To upgrade service, the Legislature empowered the Port Authority, either directly

or through its wholly owned subsidiary, PATH, to acquire the railroad. N.J.S.A. 32:1-35.50(4), (8); N.J.S.A. 32:1-35.52. PATH was also authorized to improve the railroad's terminals in order "to permit transfer of its passengers to and from other transportation facilities." N.J.S.A. 32:1-35.50(4). One of its major terminals is situated in the Journal Square area of Jersey City described in the statute as that "bounded generally by Journal square, Hudson boulevard, Pavonia avenue, Summit avenue and Sip avenue, together with such additional contiguous area as may be agreed upon from time to time between the port authority and the said city; * * *." N.J.S.A. 32:1-35.51. A report by the Port Authority regarding this terminal was submitted to the Legislature shortly before passage of the Act:

"Preliminary review of the possibilities of developing a new H&M station in Journal Square indicates that a transportation center could be developed at that location, which would include not only a new H&M station but also a bus station, parking garage, and possibly the development of the air rights over the railroad property in the area between Hudson Boulevard and Summit Avenue to the east of Hudson Boulevard.

"* * * It is believed that a multi-purpose transportation center could be developed as a most attractive architectural unit, which would be functionally efficient and which would spark the redevelopment and modernization of the Journal Square area. Such a project could also be coordinated with the City's urban renewal plans.

"Basic to the development in this area, of course, is the location of the H&M trackage and the proposed new Journal Square station. * * * A new H&M concourse could be constructed as part of the complex together with off-street parking facilities for 600 to 700 cars. This concourse would be served directly from Hudson Boulevard as well as adjacent areas in the Square.

"In addition, a new bus station could be constructed to replace an existing bus terminal at Journal Square as well as the many bus loading and unloading platforms at the Journal Square bridge plaza. This new bus station would greatly relieve traffic congestion through the Journal Square area caused by the more than 1,200 buses presently utilizing the streets each day in this area.

"A development of the general type outlined could be the stimulus for a modern, attractive redevelopment of the entire surrounding area in this section of Jersey City. It unquestionably would ensure the

continuance of Journal Square and the surrounding area as Hudson County's major business and commercial center." (Report of the Port Authority on The Hudson & Manhattan World Trade Center Project, January 29, 1962, pp. 12-13.)

On December 5, 1967, the City adopted an ordinance authorizing an agreement with PATH for the rehabilitation of the Hudson Tube facilities. On March 14, 1968, the County adopted a resolution authorizing a similar agreement. Both agreements were approved by the Board of Directors of PATH on July 11, 1968. By the terms of the agreements, PATH would construct and operate a transportation center in the Journal Square Terminal area and would ...


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