Joel Bergstein, president of Lincoln Equities Group, spoke Thursday during a ceremony attended by U.S. Sens. Bob Menendez and Cory Booker. — Courtesy: Lincoln Equities Group
By Joshua Burd
Lincoln Equities Group has unveiled plans to build “next-generation” industrial space on the Bayonne waterfront — with ceiling heights of up to 50 feet — as part of a newly announced, 1.6 million-square-foot redevelopment at a former military base in the city.
The firm detailed those plans on Thursday as it announced its pending acquisition of the 90-acre site, part of the former Military Ocean Terminal at Bayonne, or MOTBY. LEG is acquiring the site from Highstar Capital, with an eye toward attracting the growing e-commerce sector.
A site plan shows four buildings ranging from about 157,000 square feet to more than 475,000 square feet. The firm estimated that the project would take about three years to complete.
“As the e-commerce industry and same day-delivery services expand, the demand for industrial warehousing near ports and major metropolitan areas will rise,” said Joel Bergstein, president of Lincoln Equities Group. “We see tremendous potential in this underutilized waterfront site and look forward to transforming it into a location that can attract a large company.”
LEG said it expects to close on its acquisition in May, although it did not disclose the terms of the transaction. The project is slated to create more than 2,700 new jobs from construction and future tenants, executives said, adding the new facilities would help bolster trade at the Port of New York and New Jersey.
“This property is going to be developed into ‘next generation’ industrial warehouse space, meaning it will have 36- to 50-foot ceiling heights and a 50-foot column grid to accommodate larger amounts of goods coming off ships at the port,” said Robert Schenkel, senior director of development with the East Rutherford-based firm. “Everything currently on the site will be demolished to make room for construction of a state-of-the-art facility for tenants importing goods through the Port of New York and New Jersey.”
Previously, the 90-acre waterfront parcel was part of MOTBY, which was originally a naval base and later repurposed as U.S. Army base that closed in 1999, according to a news release. The site has remained dormant for more than a decade, but has attracted several residential and commercial projects in addition to LEG’s planned industrial park.
Highstar worked with Ports America Group Inc., the current manager of the site, in negotiating the agreement with LEG. On Thursday, Bergstein’s firm celebrated the deal during a ceremony attended by local officials and U.S. Sens. Bob Menendez and Cory Booker.
“We look forward to working with Lincoln Equities Group as the firm transforms this area of Bayonne, creating jobs and fueling the city, county and state economies,” Bayonne Mayor Jimmy Davis said. “Redeveloping this area has long been part of our plan to restore jobs to Bayonne.”