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Archives Camden’s latest comeback may not be mirage


In the 35 years I’ve been writing about Camden, the city has often appeared to be on the verge of a comeback.

But while a bit of skepticism is advisable – even amid the latest flurry of economic development announcements – I do get a sense of actual optimism in the air.

Because the latest proposals look stronger, smarter, more realistic, and less grandiose than many of their predecessors.

“I remember those grand announcements,” says Cooper Health System Chairman George E. Norcross 3d. “Sadly, most of [them] never happened. But these are real.”

Development of the Subaru corporate headquarters, a Lockheed-Martin laboratory, and the 76ers practice facility together will be underwritten by more than $300 million in tax credits, mostly through the state’s Economic Opportunity Act.

Even with the public subsidies, the projects are votes of confidence in Camden’s future by private enterprises that certainly are free to choose other locations. In a city long ago abandoned by most national retailers and name-brand companies, this is no small thing.

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