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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Starbucks has now put up a sign inside the ground floor of Grove Pointe as stated in this article.

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mike_s55 wrote:
Positive article from the real deal which generally only comments on New York City real estate.

http://www.therealdeal.net/issues/SEPTEMBER_2007/1188596323.php

September 2007

Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue
Building boom moves inland, reaching final frontier of gentrification

By John Celock

Grove Pointe, a condo project on top of the Grove Street PATH Station, is the anchor of Newark Avenue's revival.
The gentrification of Jersey City is making its way to Newark Avenue, a corridor long described as the final frontier.

Home mostly to discount stores and factories, Newark Avenue was largely overlooked as developers and buyers focused instead on the waterfront neighborhood of Paulus Hook and other downtown areas. As Jersey City's building boom shifts inland, developers have begun to look at the corridor, sandwiched in between the family neighborhood of Van Vorst Park and Hamilton Park, which draws a younger professional population.

Boosters say its time has arrived, though it's not a universally shared view.

"That is the next spot to take off," said Jonathan Schwartz, third-generation owner of Millennium Homes, which seeks to develop buildings along Newark Avenue, where at least 700 new residential units are planned.

This is a turnaround from just a few years ago when the area sat still, resting in the shadow of the new high-rises of the Powerhouse Arts District in the far western portion of Jersey City's downtown.

Grove Pointe, a 700,000-square-foot, 525-unit project being developed by SK Properties, is the anchor of Newark Avenue's revitalization and sits on top of the Grove Street PATH Station. The mostly rental two-tower building had units ready for occupancy at the end of July, with 90 percent of its 67 condos sold last summer. The building contains a total of 458 rental units, along with 20,000 square feet of retail space on the ground floor. Condo prices range from $500,000 to $800,000.

Jonathan Kushner, a principal at Bridgewater-based SK Properties, said the building is mainly drawing young professionals from Manhattan, Brooklyn and suburban New Jersey. The Grove Street PATH Station serves both Midtown and Lower Manhattan, which is a five-minute ride away.

Ji Yoo, an agent with the Armagno Agency, said more young prospective buyers ask about Newark Avenue. She said apartments there run between $300,000 and $500,000 for one-bedrooms and $350,000 to $700,000 for two-bedrooms, some of which are renovated from their original construction. She said prices are in line with parts of downtown Jersey City.

Lauro Arantes, an agent with Weichert Realtors, is not as sanguine as Yoo. He said the area has promise, but few of his clients are looking there, preferring the established downtown neighborhoods and the new development in Liberty Harbor.

"It will take a while," Arantes said. "I have never had clients looking to move there. It is the ugliest part of downtown Jersey City. It is the last part of downtown to be revitalized."

Kushner said the company has been working with the city to redevelop the area surrounding the PATH Station, including a redesign of the station's entrance plaza, and the creation of a pedestrian walkway, which will be open to bus traffic only during rush hour

An avenue in transition

A walk down Newark Avenue finds vacant lots and discount stores dotting the south side of the street, while the north side has newer facades and retail stores. Bob Cotter, Jersey City planning director, said redeveloping the southern portion is a priority. He said the upper floors of many retail buildings and former warehouses could be converted into residential units.

Historically an Italian-American neighborhood, it started to slide 30 years ago as small neighborhood stores closed and many residents moved to the suburbs when crime rates climbed.

Development, particularly in the retail sector, is starting to reverse the trend, says Kushner.

"The city has devoted to making it a place for nightlife," he said. "Part of living in an urban center is coming here at night and walking. It is about having everything at your fingertips."

It's Greek to Me, a restaurant, recently opened across from an upscale art gallery. Two Vietnamese restaurants opened along with LITM, a combination restaurant, bar and art gallery. Two 99-cent stores and a cut-rate clothing store remain, but brokers and local residents have said there are fewer discount stores than a few years ago.

Grove Street, which runs south from the eastern end of Newark Avenue, now has several upscale restaurants, offering Cuban, Middle Eastern and Asian cuisine. As retail space there fills up, Newark Avenue gets the overflow.

Arantes said he is currently working with a client looking at a corner space on Newark Avenue for a new restaurant. Rents have climbed to about $7,000 a month for retail storefronts, making the strip one of the most expensive markets in downtown Jersey City. He noted that the Starbucks planned for the ground floor of Grove Pointe has served as a beacon for new retailers.

"They know it will turn," Arantes said of his retail clients. "They want to be pioneers."

Treetop Development recently purchased a long vacant plot of land on the corner of Newark Avenue and Jersey Avenue, and plans to soon break ground on a 76-unit, two-building complex with 3,500 square feet of retail space.

Adam Mermelstein, a principal at Treetop, said marketing is aimed at buyers who are priced out of Manhattan and other parts of Jersey City. One-bedrooms will start at $375,000 and two-bedrooms will start at $495,000, with a projected completion date of September of 2008. These prices run slightly below new construction in more established parts of downtown Jersey City, where prices start in the low $400,000 range for one-bedrooms and around $600,000 for a two-bedroom.


A traffic twist

The New Jersey Turnpike serves as the western end of the corridor and development is taking hold in this area. The Matzel & Mumford Organization, a unit of homebuilder K. Hovanian, is starting sales on a building abutting the turnpike in the middle of August. The 54-unit midrise building is starting in the high $300,000 range. The turnpike has long been considered the dividing line between the gentrified downtown and the rest of Jersey City.

Newark Avenue will see more traffic under a plan by city officials to turn Christopher Columbus Drive into the city's new gateway. It runs parallel to Newark Avenue, into the city's new gateway. Planning director Cotter said the city has placed new signs on the turnpike directing downtown drivers onto Columbus Drive, which meets up with Newark Avenue in front of Grove Pointe. Columbus Drive is lined with warehouses and many of the buildings on the south side of Newark back up to Columbus. Realtors call increased traffic along Columbus a boon for the area.

"We are seeing big changes," Yoo said. "People are taking pride in Newark Avenue. There are new stores and restaurants opening up all the time."

Posted on: 2008/1/14 22:24
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Good article, summed up the area quite well.

Posted on: 2007/9/14 22:51
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Quote:

matchjames wrote:
:) gotcha... PS-- interested to see what will happen with that big vacant lot on Newark across from Oasis..... SUCH potential next to that beautiful bank, I hope they don't much it up!


That's 213 Newark, formerly 215 Newark. 213 Newark is now a Treetop project, six stories high.

Posted on: 2007/9/14 21:55
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Just out of curiosity - did the new plaza at Grove PATH retain its old name - Fitzgerald/Patoya (???)

Posted on: 2007/9/14 20:48
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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What ever happened to the blight study results for the strip between Newark and Columbus where the mural is? I hope they knock all of that down...... and planting a few trees down Newark might help too.

Posted on: 2007/9/11 15:02
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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bdlaw wrote:
Note to The Real Deal: Grove Pointe is NOT in the Powerhouse Arts District.


.....neither is the powerhouse arts district.

Posted on: 2007/9/11 14:37
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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:) gotcha... PS-- interested to see what will happen with that big vacant lot on Newark across from Oasis..... SUCH potential next to that beautiful bank, I hope they don't much it up!

Posted on: 2007/9/11 13:13
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Hey don't get me wrong,i was saying that as a good thing.That article was from an un biased paper who has nothing to gain.What i meant to say is that you could not have paid to say it any better.

Posted on: 2007/9/11 13:09
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Quote:

mike_s55 wrote:
Quote:

mrrogers wrote:
Wow that read like a paid advertisment.Very nice.


Look at it any way you want. 5 years ago they wouldnt even place an "ad" like this about the grove street area.

Sometimes even just having an ad is a good thing. There is money/investment behind what is going on here through media and new developments.



amen.... truth be told, it's true. This section of the city now has active developments, and it was told from an unbiased perspective, BY THE WAY in an industry trade journal. So what's the problem with growth and a cleaned up Newark Ave.?

Posted on: 2007/9/11 12:56
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Quote:

mrrogers wrote:
Wow that read like a paid advertisment.Very nice.


Look at it any way you want. 5 years ago they wouldnt even place an "ad" like this about the grove street area.

Sometimes even just having an ad is a good thing. There is money/investment behind what is going on here through media and new developments.

Posted on: 2007/9/11 3:26
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Re: Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Wow that read like a paid advertisment.Very nice.

Posted on: 2007/9/11 0:24
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Jersey City developers bet on Newark Avenue - Building boom moves inland
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Positive article from the real deal which generally only comments on New York City real estate.

http://www.therealdeal.net/issues/SEPTEMBER_2007/1188596323.php

Posted on: 2007/9/10 23:05
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