Bravo Tris! 

Great piece on the concocted mega egomaniac project, unmitigated economic disaster, and monumental failure of imagination known as The Pompidou Center. To this list I would add stunning cowardice. If Jersey City is such a desirable and coveted location for billionaires and developers, could not the mayor and his rubber stamp municipal council easily demand 3-4 floors in each of these Journal Square towers for exclusive city use, libraries, small business incubators, job creators, art workshops and museums? Creating jobs and people magnets locally would minimize JSQ transportation demand – PATH trains coming from Newark are already jammed, impossible to board. 

Clearly, Mayor Fulop sees this “bespoke” Pompidou project as a stepping stone on his way to governor, the ambition advertised in his first term. But making demands for city and community space on possible campaign donors would take courage and imagination this mayor doesn’t have. Another example of “world class” failure of imagination and conflict of interest – instead of creating an innovative “worldwide design competition” for the Power House, the mayor gives this prestigious job to Vincent Marchetto, architect, creator of boring T-square buildings. 

While always being a big fan of your music and poetry, in the past I’ve been sceptical about your reticence to step on toes, to offend the powerful. You’ve now clearly stepped out of the closet with your brilliant reports on the Pompidou boondoggle, and the Art House missing theater. Bravo!

Many are unfamiliar with the history of 111 First and subsequent promises for cultural development. Please write a full report on this important cultural abscess to highlight this unfulfilled need and to educate newcomers. 

Jim Legge