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    alongside apartments by AvalonBay Communities. When the first phase opened in 2014, the train station
was still under construction, “but people knew it was coming and they absolutely valued the promise of it,” he said. It was also still something
of “soft point in the recovery for the residential housing market, certainly here in New Jersey, and we were met with a really strong response.”
From there, Pulte saw an opportunity to make transit-centric projects “a really significant component of our global strategy going forward, where we learned how to do it quickly and we used our experience at Wesmont to springboard into several other locations.”
“I think we always knew that there was an intrinsic value in the idea of transit-oriented development in the for-sale space,” he said, adding: “There had been plenty of luxury, multifamily and rental developments that had happened in and around train stations, but there hadn’t been a whole lot done in the for-sale space.
“We believed that people would
be willing to plant roots and make significant investments and look to build equity in those places. And Wesmont was probably the very first community that proved that theory out for us.”
The publicly traded builder went on to construct 158 townhomes dubbed The Heights at Main Street, part
of Garden Homes Development’s adaptive reuse of a former Johnson & Johnson complex on Route 1
in North Brunswick, where plans include a long-awaited new stop on the Northeast Corridor Line. In Fair Lawn, a short walk from NJ Transit’s Radburn station, it’s completing a 165- unit project that is now fully sold out.
Each new project has proven that,
in a transit-oriented setting, the
right type of for-sale housing can
be complementary to a for-rent component, Wescoe said, rather than cannibalize it. Somerset Development proved its belief in such a theory when it tapped Pulte for a second project, in Somerville, where the latter is building 156 townhomes as part of a 31-acre site near Route 206.
Pulte has delivered several buildings at the property and has had residents living there since early 2021, as construction continues on a project that will also include a new civic
center, street-level retail, a public plaza and parking for the adjacent NJ Transit station. It’s now preparing for a third partnership with Zucker’s firm, at the historic Fort Monmouth property, where its plans call for 144 townhomes about a mile from the Little Silver train station.
In Union, where
Pulte recently started
construction, Russo has
already delivered more
than 400 luxury rentals
and 35,000 square feet
of retail space that is home to the likes of Starbucks, Panera and CVS. That meant the transformation of the former Merck site was well underway by the time Wescoe’s team broke ground on the Townhomes at Vermella Union, which was by no means a prerequisite, but can only help drive additional traffic.
“In this instance, it’s wonderful that it’s here, because the moment you turn into the community, you can feel the sense of arrival and that’s exciting,”
he said. “At the same time, it’s our
job to see the vision in advance for what these spaces can become. And that’s certainly what we had to do at Wesmont Station. It’s certainly what we’re doing at Somerville Station, where we were first out of the gate
— building, developing and closing
on homes — while the balance of
the multifamily proposition and the commercial proposition is still under construction.”
Pulte’s next major transit hub project will take place in West Windsor, where AvalonBay is the master developer of a 25-acre, $350 million project near the Princeton Junction rail station. With municipal site plan approval now in hand, the homebuilder is focused on securing additional regulatory approvals needed to break ground on what will be 150 townhomes and 48 condominium apartments. They will come as part of a plan that also calls for 535 apartments built by AvalonBay and 135 assisted living units by Atria Senior Living and Welltower Inc., along with 21,300 square feet of commercial and restaurant space and a 1.5-acre public promenade.
Still, amid its focus on transit-centric
 PulteGroup recently opened Link at Wesmont Station, a collection of 152 townhomes at Somerset Development’s mixed- use, master-planned redevelopment of a former Curtiss-Wright aircraft plant in Wood-Ridge. The homebuilder has delivered more than 500 for-sale units at the property since 2013.
projects, Pulte has maintained its pipeline of more traditional tract development in New Jersey, Wescoe said. The company recently opened 115 units in Warren as part of a nine- acre site helmed by Canoe Brook Development, while it’s also planning a combined 530 active adult homes at locations in Florham Park and Far Hills.
The ability to thrive in both market
segments is a product of being part of a well-heeled, national company with the ability “to be nimble and to be entrepreneurial” at the local level, while also having the resources and economies of scale at the national level.
“It’s a nice balance to have in terms of macro resources and micro-creativity,” Wescoe said. “And that allows us to operate quickly and decisively.” RE
      Westport, CT
28 Units + 4 Commercial
Andrew Scheinerman ext 247
Orange, NJ
12 Units
Joni Sweetwood ext 273
Hoboken, NJ
21 Units
Robert Squires ext 287 Scott Davidovic ext 290
Newark, NJ
11 Units + 1 Retail
Michael Salomon ext 243
Fair Haven, NJ
Free-Standing Building
Daniel Lanni ext 248
Jersey City, NJ
21 Units
Davis Briones ext 370
Newton, NJ
2 Units + 3 Retail
Joseph Keenan ext 256
Cliffside Park, NJ
2 Retail, Garage + Billboard
Jason Salomon ext 270
      Eatontown, NJ
􏰀􏰁􏰂􏰃􏰄􏰄 􏰆􏰇 􏰈􏰉􏰊􏰋􏰌
Daniel Lanni ext 248
 The Kislak Company, Inc. | | 732 750 3000
Courtesy: Pulte

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