Billy Procida is the founder and CEO of Procida Funding LLC in Englewood Cliffs. — Photo courtesy: Aaron Houston
By Joshua Burd
Veteran developer and real estate investor Billy Procida has taken control of a key parcel in Cherry Hill, where plans call for 283 homes as part of the redevelopment of the former Garden State Park racetrack.
According to Procida, the property is the final piece of a sweeping residential project at the intersection of Haddonfield Road and Chapel Avenue. The development known as Plaza Grande
began more than a decade ago under national homebuilder D.R. Horton but faced setbacks during the 2008 downturn, paving the way for a local builder to take over and complete 224 luxury units for residents 55 and older, with financing from Procida.
Last month, a firm controlled by Procida acquired the property and set out to build out the remaining 283 units. Additional details about the transaction were not immediately available Monday, although he said prospective residents can anticipate the arrival of new one- and two-bedroom residences starting in September, with rental rates starting at $2,300.
“It’s an amazing location with the best clubhouse anywhere with indoor and outdoor saltwater pools, club rooms, gym, yoga studio, movie theater and a soon-to-be-included golf simulator room, and you can walk to everything you need,” said Procida, founder and CEO of Procida Funding & Advisors in Englewood Cliffs.
In announcing the deal, the firm cited Procida’s more than 40 years of experience in real estate, during which he has won dozens of national and local awards such as Developer of the Year in New York City and the National Association of Home Builders’ Pillar of the Industry Award. He was also responsible for the recent $60 million restoration of the Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House, now a venue operated by Live Nation, on North Broad Street as well as the $50 million renovation of the nearby Divine Lorraine Hotel.
Procida’s project in Cherry Hill would add to what is already a massive property with a range of housing options, including condominiums and rentals, along with an array of retail stores such as Home Goods, Home Depot, Trader Joe’s, Wegmans and many others. It also marks the final phase of the billion-dollar redevelopment of the former racetrack, with a footprint of more than 200 acres, led by Jack Morris and Joe Marino operating as M&M Realty Partners.