I keep an eye on the comments, and I know there’s been a few stats junkies who’ve been paying attention to the ratio of malls-to-population that we’ve posted. I know there’s also been some (undeniably true) grousing that we haven’t posted anything about New Jersey in ages. Well here you go! The catch is, you get something boring. Sorry.
The Brunswick Square Mall is a really dull one, but I’m tired and I had a bloody mary a little bit ago, so this is what the vodka will let me bang out at this hour. The photoset here is also a bit old–taken November 2006–when I did a swing through New Jersey that got photos for a few other malls on the site, including Monmouth Mall and the Shore Mall.
The Brunswick Square Mall is a Simon-managed, 769,000 square foot enclosed mall located along New Jersey route 18, a little southeast of New Brunswick. The mall is more or less a modified old dumbell, with JCPenney and Macy’s as the primary anchor stores and Barnes & Noble and Old Navy as junior anchor tenants.
Brunswick Square was originally developed by DeBartolo in 1970 with JCPenney and Bamberger’s as anchor stores. There were plans in the late 1980s to turn the relatively undersized mall into a larger destination with a second level, but plans were ultimately scaled back significantly due to concerns over traffic and a poor economy. Instead, there was a much smaller expansion at the end of the 90s that brought Barnes & Noble into the center.
Brunswick Square is one of the smaller and less interesting malls in the glob of Jersey suburbia, but given the traffic-clogged nature of the region’s roads and the high population surrounding the mall, it seems to do okay (more major malls like Freehold Raceway Mall, the Quakerbridge Mall, or the malls in Menlo Park/Woodbridge kind of flank it on all sides but none are especially close). This particular area of Jersey’s suburbia is dense, busy, and overall pretty mid-market, having been developed primarily in the explosion of post-war suburbia around New York. But like most of New Jersey, there are isolated pockets of affluence scattered about, even if Brunswick Square is a defiantly plain-jane, middle of the road kinda place. I saw an old dude sleeping on one of the massage chairs here once, and that pretty much sums the place up. I doubt anyone goes out of their way to swing by this palace of excitement, but it’s close to home for an awful lot of people.
Hey, I said it was boring. But as They Might be Giants once sang:
New York has tall buildings, New Jersey has its malls
Pisa has a leaning tower will it ever fall
The ocean has the fishes
London has a tower
In Holland they have windmills , lots of banks and pretty flowers
Where do they make balloons?
And you guys sure DO love them Jersey malls. Fill us in.