New Brunswick, New Jersey’s Inner-City Has Been Transformed By Sam Boraie

New Brunswick, New Jersey is one of those East Coast cities that was infested with crime and decay during the 1970s and 80s. Retail businesses closed in downtown New Brunswick, Hoboken, Newark, Trenton, and Jersey City because it wasn’t safe to shop, even during the day. Northern New Jersey was a hub for gang and mob activity back then. Businesses left these decaying metro areas, and the people that migrated to those cities from other countries were scared to go out at night. New Jersey got a reputation for being a corrupt state, and those allegations are still thrown around from time to time.

But New Brunswick has a couple of things that Hoboken, Jersey City, Atlantic City, Trenton, and Newark didn’t have. Rutgers was founded in New Brunswick in 1766, and Johnson and Johnson started doing business in New Brunswick in 1886. The other plus that gave New Brunswick a leg up was Boraie Development LLC. Founder and developer, Sam Boraie lives in New Brunswick. Boraie had a vision for the city forty years ago and he is fulfilling it.

Seventy-three-year-old, Sam Boraie likes to share stories on about downtown New Brunswick in the 1970s. Before he started buying vacant buildings on Albany Street, downtown New Brunswick was a ghost town. The city looked like a third-world city that was ravaged by lack of funding and poor city management. In 1975, the New Jersey Economic Development Authority decided to do something about the situation. The Economic Development Authority started the New Brunswick Development Corporation (DevCo). Sam Boraie approached DevCo with an idea. By that time, Boraie owned 21 vacant buildings on Albany Street. He wanted to build the city’s first high-rise office building on that street. The city and DevCo approved the plan, and Sam went to work on Albany Street Plaza Tower One. Albany Street Plaza Tower One was the first 1980s, 25-story office building in downtown New Brunswick.

In a report by the NY Times, Boraie continued to buy property in the city, and in 2003, Albany Street Plaza Tower Two was completed. Then came the One Spring Street building. The 17-story One Spring Street building has 121 residential units, a 400-space parking garage, 40,000 square feet of office space and 10,000 square feet of retail space. But Boraie wasn’t done. New Brunswick’s downtown needed luxury condominiums, so he built the Aspire Building. The Aspire Building is a New York City inspired condo and office building for the doctors, lawyers and other professionals that work downtown.

The Boraie Development LLC projects in New Brunswick were so successful that Boraie was approached to help develop the One Riverview building in Newark. Sam teamed up with Newark native Shaq O’Neil on the Riverview project. Omar Boraie has also been involved with developments in Montgomery, and Atlantic City, New Jersey. He also helped with the fundraising for the New Brunswick State Theater. Sam is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Star Theater, and he is also a member of the Advisory Board for the nonprofit Elijah’s Promise.

In addition to property development, Boraie Development LLC handles property management and other marketing services in New Jersey.


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