Author Topic: Developers reveal plans for 35-story tower at Jersey City Pep Boys site  (Read 5579 times)

Online MA

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Jersey City gives 25-year tax break to union-backed towers project
By Ben Shapiro | The Jersey Journal
on August 20, 2015 at 10:02 AM, updated August 20, 2015 at 11:55 AM

JERSEY CITY Union workers flooded City Hall Plaza and then the council meeting last night to support the approval of a residential housing project in Downtown Jersey City.

Hundreds of workers from a variety of labor unions attended the meeting and saw the council members approve a 25-year tax break for a two-tower, 800-unit project on Marin Boulevard by a vote of 7-2.

[...]

However, some residents were upset with the long-term tax relief given to developer Forest City and the $20 million in redevelopment bonds it received.

"Why does a company with a history of being rich need help on a project," asked Lorenzo Richardson. "Let him pay his own way if he wants to work in our city."

Ward C Councilman Richard Boggiano and Ward D Councilman Michael Yun voted against the measure. Boggiano, a staunch critic of Mayor Steve Fulop, also did not agree with giving the real estate company a tax break.

"While I like how this is great for the people of Jersey City I resent a tax abatement given to this company," said Boggiano. "This is one of the wealthiest companies in the country."

One tower is expected to be 35 stories while the other will be 36 stories, each with an estimated 420 and 432 residential units respectively. Twenty-five percent, or 85 units, of the 35-story building will be used for affordable housing rental units while 20 percent, or 87 units, in the larger building will be designated for the same purpose.

Council President Rolando Lavarro Jr., stood by the city's decision to provide a abatement to Forest City, and is happy that affordable housing will be provided in Downtown Jersey City.

"This is the first affordable housing on site in Downtown Jersey City in the last 30 years," said Lavarro. "I am thrilled with what this will provide."

Both towers will be constructed on the site of the old Pep Boys in the Metro Plaza shopping center by developer Forest City. Read more

Related: Jersey City tax abatement policy unfairly benefits union workers, group says in lawsuit

Online MA

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From the article: "City spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill called the tax deals "consistent with the mayor's vision" to create affordable housing citywide. Twenty percent of the towers' units will be affordable for people earning moderate income, with rents for one-bedroom units as low as $954, compared to $2,325 for an unsubsidized one-bedroom condo." Supposedly without an abatement deal the math doesn't add up for the developer. Would be nice to see the math checked by an independent party, though.

In principle, I'm not against the idea of including affordable housing in new developments, but this move smacks of the kind of ad hoc, moving-the-goalposts shenanigans that a former Downtown councilman used to be against. The original thread for Fulop's revised abatement policy is here. It only says that "Fulops plan also requires developers who receive abatements to hire local labor and minorities and contribute to the city Affordable Housing Trust Fund."

Offline shahaggy

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I would also like to know why the affordable housing portion of the housing isn't for the life of the building.  It was only extended from 10 to 25 years.  Does this mean there won't be any need for affordable housing 25 years after the building is complete?
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Offline Soshin

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Without sounding like some of the nuttier folks in JC who go on and on about taxes being too damn high and developers getting gobbles from the city council, can someone please explain to me why tax breaks are still being extended to developments in an area that needs no development?

I thought the Fulop administration wanted to use tax abatements to encourage development OUTSIDE of downtown.  No?
"god hates you. you will all go to yuppie hell. in yuppie hell there is no starbucks or hole foods or sushi bar. in yuppie hell you will work 16 hours a day in a bodega. in yuppie hell your car will not start when the sweeper is coming down the street. in yuppie hell your doorman will terrorize you and have sex with your wife or husband...when you are at work....in the bodega. in yuppie hell you will go to the laundromat and lose your last quarter in a broken washing machine. in yuppie hell you will buy all your food and clothing at the 99 cent store. in yuppie hell there are no cell phones, you will use a pay phone. a filthy pay phone".      -   Cat_Man Dude

Online MA

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20-year tax breaks planned for Downtown Jersey City towers
« Reply #4 on: 07-27-2015, 01:32pm »
20-year tax breaks planned for Downtown Jersey City towers
By Terrence T. McDonald | The Jersey Journal
on July 24, 2015 at 2:37 PM, updated July 24, 2015 at 6:55 PM

JERSEY CITY The Fulop administration is asking the City Council next week to approve 20-year tax breaks for a two-tower, 800-condo project set for Marin Boulevard in the city's Downtown.

The proposed deal, set for initial approval at a special council meeting on Tuesday night, would also grant the developer, a subsidiary of Forest City, $20 million in redevelopment bonds, an unusual agreement that city officials also granted to the three-tower Journal Squared project in 2013.

The abatement would allow Forest City to eschew normal taxation in exchange for paying the city 7 percent of its annual gross revenue on the $449 million project. The amount the developer expects to pay the city in its first year of operation is about $920,000 for each tower.

In June, the developer received $40 million in state tax credits for the first tower.

City spokeswoman Jennifer Morrill called the tax deals "consistent with the mayor's vision" to create affordable housing citywide. Twenty percent of the towers' units will be affordable for people earning moderate income, with rents for one-bedroom units as low as $954, compared to $2,325 for an unsubsidized one-bedroom condo.

"Helping to finance these affordable housing units would be cheaper than the city attempting to build them itself given the increased price of land downtown," Morrill said.

The Forest City subsidiary intends to build two towers, one 35 stories and the other 36, with about 420 residential units each, on the site of the old Pep Boys in the Metro Plaza shopping center, just west of Newport. Construction on the 35-story tower is expected to begin next month.

Long-range plans for the site, now called the Metro Plaza shopping center, include 12 residential towers spread over 18 acres, plus a revamped street grid. The current zoning allows for 5,000 units total.

The developer, Abe Naparstek, said he thinks of the state tax deal, the city tax break and the redevelopment bonds as a package deal that, together, make the project viable. Without one of the three components, he wouldn't be able to build the towers, certainly not with 172 affordable units, he said. Read more

Offline stephen

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Is that Provost Street I see in the rendering? Seems like a good idea to extend that from 2nd Street to 6th Street as illustrated.

Online MA

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35-story tower planned for Downtown Jersey City
« Reply #2 on: 06-05-2015, 09:00am »
35-story tower planned for Downtown Jersey City
By Terrence T. McDonald | The Jersey Journal
on June 05, 2015 at 8:19 AM

The Jersey City Planning Board is scheduled to give preliminary approval on Tuesday at 5:30 to plans for a 35-story, 421-unit tower on the site of a Downtown Pep Boys.

The tower, a project of a subsidiary of Forest City, which was behind Brooklyn's Barclays Center, would be the second phase of a two-tower project. The first tower, also 35 stories with 421 units, has already received site plan approval. Read more

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Developers reveal plans for 35-story tower at Jersey City Pep Boys site
By Terrence T. McDonald | The Jersey Journal
on March 03, 2015 at 4:33 PM, updated March 03, 2015 at 5:44 PM

JERSEY CITY -- New renderings show developers' plans for a 35-story residential tower on the site of the Downtown Pep Boys, part of a large-scale development called Hudson Exchange West proposed for that area.

If approved by city planning officials, the tower would house 421 units and include over 12,000 square feet of retail space on a four-acre site just north of the Harsimus Cove light rail station.

The tower would be the first phase of a massive revamp of the 11-acre Metro Plaza shopping center, which includes a ShopRite, BJ's Wholesale Club and Bed, Bath & Beyond. Preliminary plans submitted by developers to planning officials show a new street grid between Second and Sixth streets, plus a park in the middle of the new development. Read more

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