p’Burg re-Surge!


by ellen shaughnessy, Happy New Year! Jan. 5, 2019

We just listed some exciting brand new gleaming residential rentals on s. Main St. in Phillipsburg… When I first stepped inside these, it was so thrilling to see that a local investor would go to these lengths to create sophisticated modern rentals with nice finishes like ceramic tile, stone counters, high-end appliances, new engineered wood floors, dedicated laundry, and motion-lit hallways with exposed brick and soaring 13′ ceilings… not all landlords invest in hiring an architect to see a renovation vision through properly.

338 s. Main St. Phillipsburg retail space is for lease; ALL NEW & BEAUTIFUL!
338 s. Main St. has a gorgeous new facade with magnificent shop windows that look over Shappell Park. FOR LEASE!

Urban Chic! These residential units with exposed brick are at 518 s. Main St. and we also have 2 other beautiful new 2 bedroom rentals at 338 s. Main St. It was an uplifting experience to hear that these fresh new mod residences in downtown Phillipsburg are the enduring vision of my friend Will Dohe, an inspired friend and architect who sadly passed unexpectedly at 53, just before the holidays.

The ‘before and after’ is quite stunning in these two buildings. The former St. James convent at 518 so. Main st. now boasts six hip, and nothing short of heavenly top-notch residential units. Four of these feature a dedicated outdoor space, and each unit gets a parking space or two out back. 338 s. Main features a gorgeous retail/office space on the street level and is located in the UEZ (Urban Enterprise Zone), which offers some nice tax incentives to the business owner/their customers.

Across the street you will find a tried and true handy casual eatery that has been voted best  breakfast & buffet by the 99.9 The Hawk, and #2 best burger in Warren County, on nj.com: Sullivan on the Main.

But wait – there’s more! As I hung out on the sidewalk near these gorgeous new rentals I chatted with a few local folks on the block. We all recognize a quiet but sure movement afoot, along Main St. There are a few more new boutique businesses quietly sprouting up along the Main corridor of downtown Phillipsburg.

Eureka! There are more encouraging signs of a Phoenix rising here on Main Street. This is a plant-based food restaurant on the verge of opening – it’s in the handsome Mercantile space at 396 S Main St, Phillipsburg, NJ 08865. Phone: (844) 347-5268.

yummy food, home-made @the Farmer and the Chickpea

Artisan food company, The Farmer and the Chickpea, Phillipsburg NJ opened its scrumptious doors in time to catch Phillipsburg’s Polar Exress. It’s nestled in a cozy spot next to SoMa and at the edge of Union Square, just above the gas station.

<– update, the Farmer + the Chickpea pop-up space is now a yummy new breakfast spot, with home-made muffins and deliciousness… don’t be surprised if you see a fresh banana muffin getting tossed down to the train engineer passing through!

The food is freshly home-made with wonderful quality ingredients …this healthy cooking is all quite delicious; co-owner Gillian has been running their original operation in the Clinton area and decided that it’s time to blaze west. Here at her outpost on the edge of NJ + PA, you can have something warmed and eat-in, or there are lots of take-and-go yummy and creative entrees to just grab and warm up at home. You can also call ahead for custom orders.

Ricotta Pie: YUM…

Gillian manages to sneak in crunchy bits of kale and other vitamin-rich tidbits here & there, and has come up with some creative signature dishes that taste so good – you forget that it’s ‘healthy’.

The Polar Express menu featured a fun do-it-yourself pot pie bar and a sweets area too;  home-made ricotta pie looks amazing… next time! For winter hours call 908.635.1684.

Mediterranean flavors sprout at 150 s. Main St. Phillipsburg NJ
Greek Meat Guys!

In addition to a Peruvian bodega along this stretch, there’s now more international flavor at new Mediterranean eatery: . The restaurant looks very nice – haven’t been in yet but it’s definitely on this tzatziki fan’s list for a visit soon.

At 96 Sitgreaves St. just off Shappell Park you will now find a sweet new Around Again consignment shop with some higher-end merchandise for both men & women.
Hours are by appt, or on Wednesdays, Thurs, Fri. and every other Saturday: (908) 399-8268

Rumor has it that there’s a micro-brewery looking to open along Main St. in P’Burg too, at the former Everybody’s Gym space near the waterfront.

Many steadfast trailblazers such as Joe’s Steaks (since 1938!), Soma grill & bar, Free Bridge Liquors, Rocco’s Pizza, Ponzi’s tailor shop, Ice Cream Junction, and the Lock Doctor have withstood the test of time here on the east coast of the Delaware, while a few others have come & gone…

‘I’m Back’ – Let’s hope so P’Burg!

The momentum right now seems to bode well for some staying power for these energetic entrepreneurs; here we go P’Burg, here we go!

This blog is hosted by Free Bridge Realty, freebridgerealty.com

formerly Teddy’s Diner… Greek Meat Guy makes EXCELLENT!!! gyros with everything.

Want to support more Phillipsburg local businesses? Many are in a directory here at the Phillipsburg Downtown Assn.
for Warren County events, subscribe to Warren County Wanderings.

….because we love living here, and so can you!  sm

Check out these nice small business incentives in P’Burg:



6 thoughts on “p’Burg re-Surge!”

  1. David Morrisette

    Excellent review of Phillipsburg and the sense of resurgence that the Town is experiencing. Mayor Ellis has worked hard to lay out plans for redevelopment of the Town. In 2016, the Town held a Design Charrette at the train station by the black bridge hosted by SoMa (Friday evening) and the train station by the black bridge (Saturday, thanks to Ken Miller). Over 40 citizens and a dozen professional architects and planners from the Rutgers Edward J. Bloustien School of Public Policy and Planning participated in the Design Charrette which was used to update the Phillipsburg Redevelopment Plans. It was felt that where reasonable, the history of the architecture should be kept. Additionally, the Design Charrette produced some concept designs to develop the riverfront down at Union Square. Historically, other cities and towns have unfortunately leap frogged Phillipsburg in the area of development of their riverfronts, like New Hope, Easton, Bethlehem, Allentown… The current Phillipsburg administration is looking to do its best to push forward and make Phillipsburg a true and significant riverfront destination for the enjoyment of both residents and tourists from around the region.

  2. Why the false political statement? You couldn’t leave that out? Was it really necessary? No one is trying to thwart progress except Mayor Ellis. While new businesses are great, it does not improve the quality of life for existing residents. Mayor Ellis has flat out refused to enforce ordinances designed to eradicate the slumlord and unruly tenant problems. This should have been a positive post but it’s clear that the author is a friend of the Mayor, because he takes every opportunity possible to blame council for the fun of it. Our current council is working hard to improve life in Phillipsburg. The only one stopping that is Mayor Ellis.

    1. Thank you for your comments… the intention of this article is meant to show signs of growth – there are a few more encouraging small businesses opening in Phillipsburg, and of course do not forget the established ones too.

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