Mixed-use project in Jersey City taking redevelopment beyond the waterfront

(Source: NJBiz)

A major residential and retail project preparing for construction in Jersey City is being viewed as the catalyst for the revitalization of a once-thriving retail corridor in the city. But the project faces a tough retail climate, and difficulties with filling the avenue’s other retail spaces may be a stumbling block to the revitalization effort, some insiders said.

By early September, local developer Whiton Street Associates LLC expects to begin construction on the first phase of the Monticello, a $350 million redevelopment project planned to span four blocks on Monticello Avenue in the city’s Bergen Hill section. The $30 million first phase — which will take about 16 to 18 months to complete and total 225,000 square feet — will encompass 120 rental apartments and 25,000 square feet of retail space.

Upon completion, the six-year, four-phase project will consist of four buildings with more than 1,200 residential units — 20 percent of which will be designated as affordable housing — 250,000 square feet of retail space and 2,500 indoor parking spaces, according to the developer.

“This project will be the driving force for revitalization of this avenue, this neighborhood,” said Michelangelo Russo, president and chief executive of Whiton Street Associates. “All in all, it will raise the value of the area substantially.”

Read Evelyn Lee’s full article “A retail renaissance amid a recession” in NJBIZ (July 20, 2009).

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