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    get it done.”
As of early February, plans for the initial phase included two mixed- use buildings with residential units and retail space, along with a nearby medical arts building, Waters said. Township officials, meantime, say they hope that demolition could begin by this summer.
That would give way to what the municipality envisions as at least three phases with roughly 800 residential units. While officials noted that the process was still in its earliest stages, they are now touting the promise of new residential offerings that will entice East Brunswick’s young professionals
to stay in town, while appealing to move-down renters and empty- nesters.
And, according to a concept detailed by the project team, additional elements would include a modern hotel, restaurants, shops, pedestrian paths, water features and a central public plaza. All of which will provide a more urban, walkable setting for those who still prefer the suburbs.
“This is the first concrete step forward,” said Mike Hughes, the executive director of the town’s redevelopment
agency. “And
it’s truly a leap
forward in a
partnership ...
that’s going to
be able to shape
East Brunswick,
not through just
the next few
years, not just through the next few decades, but really through the next generation of folks who are going to be able to call East Brunswick home.”
The agreement between the township and River Development comes nearly two years after Cohen and Councilman James Wendell launched a redevelopment agency to help revive the blighted properties, which included using the tools allowable under the state guidelines for redevelopment. The move aimed to draw new interest to what is otherwise prime real estate: The site is about a mile from the New Jersey Turnpike, with daily traffic of 100,000 vehicles, and is part of a corridor that connects New Brunswick and Rutgers University to the Jersey
It was no surprise, then, to see
a host of developers respond to
the requests for proposals for the target area. Wendell called River Development’s plan “the most dynamic,” seemingly in a nod to both its architectural concept
and the mix of uses that the firm proposed. Among other features, the project calls for a new bus terminal and commuter parking garage that would serve as the township’s first transit hub on the southbound side of Route 18.
It’s among several benefits that would come to existing East Brunswick residents under the proposal, Hughes said, along with the ability to draw new businesses by replacing outdated retail space. But he also cited the potential to lure new residents to the municipality, thanks in part to the living options that River Development has included.
It’s a concept that dates back to
the earliest stages of the town’s redevelopment effort — and one that other municipalities are embracing. Francis Reiner, a consultant who
worked with East Brunswick’s redevelopment agency, said some communities
that historically
settings are
realizing the
need to create
them in order
to attract
millennials and
younger families, along with empty- nesters looking to downsize and remain in town.
Still, carving out a downtown where
Francis Reiner
 Celebrating 50 Years!
                       Meridia On Westfield 240 W. Westfield Ave. Roselle Park, New Jersey
 Capodagli Property Company is pleased to announce its 50th anniversary.
Building on Belonging
 Transforming communities through redevelopment
Generating transformation through redevelopment
Pioneering Neighborhoods
    Meridia On Main 240 Main St. Hackensack, New Jersey
   Capodagli Property Company, LLC / Meridia, LLC, “Since 1970”
201 S.Wood Ave, Linden NJ 07036 973-694-3000 •
          Mike Hughes

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