I try to walk a fine line when reporting on legislation and public policy proposals that may or may not come to fruition. Among them is the push to legalize recreational marijuana in New Jersey, which always seemed somewhat imminent under Gov. Phil Murphy, but still took several years and a voter referendum to become reality.
Admittedly, our coverage during that time was largely hypothetical, exploring how cannabis could impact commercial real estate alongside a growing list of experts in the field. It’s why I’m happy to finally be reporting on that impact in real time. As you’ll read in this month’s cover story, with licensing for recreational marijuana now underway in New Jersey, landlords have started to field requirements from adult use cannabis companies seeking to set up shop and establish their supply chain. Those discussions come with one glaring caveat: Industrial space has never been harder to find in the Garden State, creating an added hurdle for the manufacturing and cultivation businesses that regulators conditionally approved in late March. It only complicates a market that, for now, is limited to less than a third of New Jersey municipalities.
Our April issue also highlights three projects in Newark in which new development or investment is poised to infuse one of the city’s cultural anchors, while helping to advance economic growth in and around the downtown. The proposals, each unveiled within the past year, were on display during a recent program hosted by the Newark Regional Business Partnership, where leaders of the New Jersey Performing Arts Center, the Newark Museum of Art and Newark Symphony Hall detailed their plans to a crowd of key stakeholders. With a combined investment of around $285 million, they’re poised to create a new arts hub in the midst of the downtown’s academic and business corridors.
Elsewhere in this edition, we detail PulteGroup’s fast-growing pipeline in one particular niche in New Jersey. The national homebuilder has become a key player in some of the state’s largest mixed-use, transit-centric redevelopments over the past decade, having delivered or broken ground on some 1,300 for-sale homes near train stations. As Pulte’s Corey Wescoe tells us, that pipeline is primed for additional growth thanks to projects in West Windsor, Fort Monmouth and other locations with several well-known developers, providing a key offering alongside the luxury rentals, retail space and other uses envisioned by its partners.
You can find those stories and more in our latest issue, including a recap of the industry’s top stories, deals and personnel moves from the past month. As we start the second quarter, let’s hope the market continues the momentum that we saw through the first three months of the year, even in some of the less obvious places. As always, please continue to reach out with your questions, feedback and story ideas.
Thanks for reading and enjoy the issue!