A rendering of The Mill at Riverside, a planned 190-unit townhome and apartment development at Delaware and New Jersey avenues in Riverside — Courtesy: Kokes Properties
By Joshua Burd
Kokes Properties is slated to break ground later this year on the first piece of a plan to redevelop a long-vacant lot at the site of a former garment factory in Burlington County.
The developer, which acquired the property late last year, said it recently secured amended preliminary and final site plan approval for the parcel at Delaware and New Jersey avenues in Riverside. The project known as The Mill at Riverside is expected to include 22 townhomes and 168 apartments for a total of 190 units, with a location that is a block from NJ Transit light rail service and a half-hour drive from Philadelphia.
Kokes noted that the site was once home to the William F. Taubel Hosiery Mill, a former garment factory that doubled as Riverside’s largest employer for the early part of the 20th century. The firm is now drawing inspiration for the project’s design from historical photographs of the building, which was demolished in 2006.
“Securing this approval marks a key first step toward the revitalization of downtown Riverside,” said Michael J. Kokes, president of Brielle-based Kokes Properties. “By incorporating certain design elements in our plan that pay homage to Taubel’s Mill, our intent is to invoke a sense of community pride for those long-time residents who revered the old factory while also piquing a sense of historical curiosity for future generations who choose to call Riverside home.
“We are exquisitely sensitive to and respectful of the history rooted in this site. In our view, Riverside is an underserved market with tremendous potential, and we believe there is no better way to bridge the gap between past and present than to honor the property’s legacy through thoughtful design and planning.”
Kokes added that development at the site has been stalled for years, with multiple versions of the site plan going back to 2008.
“At Kokes Properties, we pride ourselves on developing meaningful relationships within the communities in which we operate,” he said. “Since acquiring the Taubel’s Mill site last year, we have been humbled by the overwhelming support received from the various stakeholders to whom this property means so much. Their trust and confidence in us are not to be taken lightly, and we are looking forward to making them proud as we embark on our mission to transform a paper concept into a tangible reality.”
The developer, whose family has built more than 21,000 homes since 1964, said it was planning The Mill at Riverside in two phases. The first, which includes a community clubhouse and 126 units west of Fairview Street, is expected to break ground before the end of the year.
Other features will include on-site parking, bike storage, a fitness center and package rooms. Monthly rents will start in the high $1,300s for one-bedroom units.
“Price is the ultimate amenity, and The Mill at Riverside will offer residents an opportunity to enjoy high-quality housing and lifestyle options at affordable price points,” said Clark McIntyre, Kokes Properties’ vice president of operations. “We are confident that this project will be an asset to the community and will position the town favorably for growth in the years ahead.”