“It was absolutely shocking to many people that you would take an office building and knock it down, like we used to knock down factories,” said James W. Hughes, a professor at Rutgers. “Now it’s routine.”
But in many places, that idea is still settling in. It will mean taking land long zoned for offices, and allowing townhomes to be built among them, or permitting apartments or industrial-scale warehouses for the first time. Amid a nationwide housing crisis, many obsolete office parks could be ideal sites for denser housing.