Most regular readers of this publication can tell that, when it comes to new construction, mixed-use and multifamily projects are the ones making most of the headlines.
In fact, there are so many projects in New Jersey these days that we don’t often get to spend much time covering them in depth before we have to move on to the next groundbreaking or ribbon-cutting.
But I was fortunate in May to get an up-close look at two of the state’s newest residential developments. For this month’s cover story, Kushner Real Estate Group welcomed us into the first phase of Journal Squared, the striking 53-story luxury tower in what is a very important section of Jersey City. There’s no doubt the building is visually stunning, with its luxury apartments and architecture that is recognizable to anyone who drives around Hudson County. But I left the interview feeling most intrigued by just how long it took to get the project out of the ground. As KRE executives Jon Kushner and Jeremy Kaplan told us, the firm began to assemble the site as early as late 2007, meaning nearly a full decade had passed before the first resident moved into Journal Squared.
Proof once again that developers in this state know how to take the long view. And the ability to do so can have a major impact on a community. If Journal Squared is successful, it could spark a long-awaited revitalization in what has been the heart of Jersey City.
We also went inside Woodmont Metro at Metuchen Station, another project that is years in the making and one that has its own set of implications. As someone who grew up five minutes from the project site, I can tell you that Metuchen is indeed a community that values its small town feel and its Main Street business district. For the sake of New Jersey’s economy and its real estate industry, it’s encouraging to see such a town recognize the need to redevelop and find a builder that can strike the right balance in doing so. In partnering with Woodmont Properties, another firm with a long-term mentality, borough officials have brought a new type of high-end offering to its downtown that seemingly blends well with its historical identity.
Our residential and mixed-use issue also takes a look at one of the government tools that has made these types of projects possible. In our story, “Eye on Trenton,” we highlight some legislative proposals that are raising concern among developers and other stakeholders. Namely, lawmakers are mulling changes that would require municipalities to share tax abatement revenue with their school districts, in what real estate experts say would discourage the use of the incentives and slow redevelopment considerably.
You can find those stories and more in the June issue of Real Estate NJ. It’s hard to believe that this is our sixth issue, but as we all know, time flies when you’re having fun. Thanks to everyone who continues to read and support our magazine and our website, www.RE-NJ.com, which continues to grow on a daily basis. As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or story ideas. Enjoy the issue!