15 Washington Street

Connecting Newark's historic past with a vibrant future

Designed by the renowned Newark-based architectural firm of John H. and Wilson C. Ely, this building was constructed in 1930 as the headquarters for the American Insurance Company. With its elegant Corinthian Columns and classic cupola, 15 Washington has become one of Newark’s most iconic structures. For more than 40 years, the building was an integral part of Newark’s economy.

After the insurance company left Newark in the early 1970’s, the building was vacant until 1978, when Rutgers University acquired it to serve as the home for its School of Law in Newark. They subsequently named it the S.I. Newhouse Center for Law and Justice.

In January of 2000, the law school moved to new facilities and the building remained vacant for over 15 years. Continuing its strong partnership with Rutgers, Devco secured $95 million in financing for the rehabilitation of 15 Washington Street by accessing innovative funding mechanisms and government incentives. In partnership with Pennrose Properties, 15 Washington was renovated into a residential building offering a range of styles for 360 undergraduate and graduate students at Rutgers-Newark. With the building situated within the Historic James Street Commons Neighborhood, Devco carefully restored its façade and structure, reclaiming the original form and style. The project was completed in 2015.

The renovated landmark building at 15 Washington Street, and the addition of student housing has reinvigorated the vibrant urban lifestyle of this area of Newark.