Developers in North Jersey are eagerly awaiting the results of the upcoming election.
The one for New York City mayor.
A change in leadership can mean a change in business philosophies, and some are feeling (even hoping) that the potential election of Bill de Blasio to succeed business-friendly Mike Bloomberg could send companies across the river in search of better deals.
Newark isn't facing the same problem.
Cory Booker certainly has his detractors, though the troubling rising murder rate in his city hasn't slowed his expected ascension to U.S. senator in this week's special election. And for those who say his rock-star persona has made him more interested in himself than his city, we disagree.
Booker's personality has brought much-needed attention to Newark — and much-needed business. Panasonic, Manischewitz and Audible.com are the first ones to come to mind, but the expanded list includes the likes of Prudential, Damascus Bakeries and others, not to mention some redevelopment projects such as Teachers Village.
And while Booker's ties to the tech leaders of Silicon Valley — and his personal profit from it — brought another campaign hiccup, they too have been a plus for the city, led by the highly publicized $100 million donation to Newark public schools by Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
Let's be clear: There are plenty of people who deserve credit for Newark's recent successes; it's been a joint effort of private corporations, philanthropists and state incentives such as the soon-to-be extinct Urban Transit Hub. But so much of Newark's success starts with Booker. And luckily for Newark and New Jersey, it doesn't figure to stop if he heads to Washington.
One insider put it best: "As soon as you got a place on the map and investors start flocking there, they don't leave overnight."
If Booker is elected senator, his influence on the city should continue. Another insider suggests he could push the need to invest in transportation infrastructure — which Newark relies upon heavily.
There certainly is a fear of the unknown, but it's hard to imagine Booker's replacement would do anything to stop the momentum.