To the Editor:
I write in support of efforts to bring new life to the Princeton Shopping Center (PSC), and I hope that members of the Planning Board and Council will designate this an “area in need of redevelopment” in their upcoming meetings.
When I first moved into town, the PSC seemed to me a dull fixture of the suburbs. But there were two things I failed to appreciate: (1) the real charm of the center and what it has meant to the Princeton community; and (2) how much work is needed to improve commerce and the physical structure.
With downtown Princeton nearby, I’d never expected my wife, son, and I to spend so much time at the PSC. Before the pandemic, we attended the concerts and the arts-and-culture festivals. During the pandemic, we eat outside — protected from the rain — at Lillipies and The Blue Bears.
It’s easy to dismiss the PSC as a relic of the 1950s. But there are few other sites in the area that combine basic needs (the supermarket, the hardware store, the pediatrician) and local flare.
The problem is that, without concerted action, the PSC really will become a relic. The roof is often in need of repairs. There is flooding, as the complex was built in an era before stormwater concerns. And, even pre-COVID, there were a number of vacant storefronts. more