Hudson County, NJ — The rebirth if popular Hudson County Cities is moving full steam ahead as evident by China Overseas America of New York City’s recent announcement of plans to construct the largest building in New Jersey along Jersey City’s Hudson River waterfront – a 95 story, 760-unit condo building at 99 Hudson Street. As the skylines of Jersey
City and Hoboken welcome these new, glistening residential towers, many young families is search of competitively priced homes near mass transportation into New York City are asking the question “where to find affordability on Hudson County’s ‘Gold Coast?”
To answer this question, simply look east to Manhattan where for more than a decade young homebuyers and renters pushed out of popular residential addresses head to gentrifying neighborhoods in Boroughs such as Queens where they can find affordable housing, easy commutability and an urban lifestyle environment. This same migration is now happening in New Jersey.
Hoboken and Jersey City have become well-known as destinations for these single-professionals, couples and growing families which has led to their significant revitalization with upscale high-rise buildings dotting their skylines and chic shops, boutiques and fine restaurants lining their downtown neighborhoods. With the popularity of these two neighboring Cities growing tremendously, escalating prices and limited supply has the Hudson River “Gold Coast” expanding into lesser known neighborhoods in Hudson County and eastern Bergen County to find lower housing prices and similar public transportation access to Manhattan. So where are Millennials and young families heading?
Lying on the southern-most tip of New Jersey’s Hudson River “Gold Coast” and bordered by the Newark Bay to the west, the City of Bayonne has yet to see the type of gentrification that has occurred in neighboring Cities, but is now taking steps to become Hudson County’s next residential hotspot by taking advantage of its s proximity to mass transportation, waterfront location and small town charm. Traditionally a working middle-class neighborhood of one-and two-family homes which served the many residents who worked in the City’s manufacturing facilities, Bayonne is drawing this new breed of residents lured by its emerging stock of modern multi-family buildings, accessibility to the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail and competitive housing prices.
Much of the City’s redevelopment efforts have been rooted at The Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor, a visionary plan to transform the former Military Ocean Terminal (MOTBY) into a vibrant, mixed-use waterfront community. The first residential component of The Peninsula debuted in 2009 with the opening of Alexan CityView, an upscale rental community lying on 297-acres along New York Harbor with panoramic views of Manhattan. Economic concerns in recent times and other delays have slowed plans for The Peninsula. However, after some years of inactivity, developers and the City are preparing to ramp up efforts at the 400-acre site. Plans have been approved for Harbor Station North, which is expected to bring 850 residential units and commercial and retail space on the westernmost district of The Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor. Following in its footsteps, Bayonne is in the process of selecting a developer for Harbor Station South, a 57-acre portion of The Peninsula at Bayonne Harbor. The City “envisions the [Harbor Station South] District as a transit-oriented mixed-use development with a preference for retail and commercial development that includes amenities that complement the adjacent Royal Caribbean cruise port operations, such as a luxury hotel and supporting retail services.”
Filling the gap between activity at The Peninsula and providing upscale housing options in Bayonne has been development in the City’s inner neighborhoods. At the forefront of the revival of Bayonne’s core is a new upscale building that mixes old-and-new to create one of the most unique lifestyle opportunities in the area. SilkLofts, a collection of 85 Brooklyn-style loft
residences, is being created in the former Maidenform factory, an iconic building in Bayonne for nearly 100 years which is recognized as a national historic preservation project by the National Park Service. Silk Lofts, LLC is transforming the factory where the modern bra originated and where military parachutes and carrier pigeon vests were manufactured during WWII into a series of distinctive loft apartments. The $20 million conversion is expected to be completed this year.
Another rental development, Kaplan Companies’ Camelot at Bayonne, opened last fall with 96 apartment homes housed in a four-story complex near the waterfront.
. North and Western Hudson County:
Many of the waterfront Cities north of Hoboken has already seen a rebirth with million-dollar townhomes and condominiums bordering the Hudson River in Weehawken, Edgewater and beyond. For example, 1000 Avenue at Port Imperial debuted early this year with condominium homes priced from $1.1 million in Weehawken. That doesn’t mean affordability can’t be found. Towns just off the Hudson River with commuter access to the Lincoln Tunnel have risen in popularity in recent years. In Union City, N.J., new residential offerings such as The Lenox on Central Avenue offers upscale condominiums, Manhattan-style amenities and a convenient location minutes from New Jersey Transit busses to Manhattan. Homes are priced to appeal to first-time buyers currently renting in New York City or nearby Hoboken with condominiums starting at $179,000.
Western Hudson County Cities have also benefitted from escalating prices close to the waterfront. Just a few PATH stops past Jersey City, Harrison, N.J. is in the midst of major redevelopment. The 25,000-seat stadium for the New York Red Bulls professional soccer team has been a tremendous success the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is spending more than a quarter-billion dollars to upgrade the 76-year-old PATH station. Residential development is also bustling. Harrison Station, the first of several residential buildings being built as part of a plan to reenergize the former industrial town, was developed and leased up in 2012. The 275-unit luxury rental building with 12,814 square feet of retail space is the first phase of a plan that will ultimately bring 2,600 luxury residences and 80,000 square feet of retail space. Included in the 27-acre Harrison Station site adjacent to the Harrison PATH station is Element Harrison, a brand new 138 room hotel introduced by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. last fall.
BNE Real Estate Group also made its debut in Harrison in 2014 with the opening of Water’s Edge at Harrison, a 141-unit rental community featuring studio, one- and two-bedroom apartments with contemporary interior spaces on the Passaic River waterfront. Amenities include 24-hour concierge, 24-hour on-site management, shuttle to PATH station, state-of-the-art fitness center, Wi-Fi business lounge, residents’ lounge with fireplace and bar, game room with billiards and shuffleboard, and a landscaped outdoor terrace with heated outdoor pool, lounge seating and a fire pit. On-site covered parking is also available.
. Bergen County:
Access to the George Washington Bridge has lured the migration further north up the Hudson River. In Ft. Lee, right in the shadow of the world famous crossing residents of a new, approximately $1 billion commuter neighborhood now reside in the Twenty50 luxury rental building, and a massive influx of new residents is expected to energize the emerging neighborhood over the next few years. Twenty50 is a 194-unit luxury rental building that opened in September, 2013. It is the first of three major residential and mixed-use projects rising in an area a few blocks off of Main Street in Fort Lee where developers envision more than 1,500 rental apartments, 175,000 square feet of retail space and a 175-room hotel taking shape. The other two projects are Hudson Lights, developed by The KRE Group and Tucker Development Corp., and The Modern, developed by Fort Lee Redevelopment Associates. Both Hudson Lights and The Modern are two-phase projects, currently in various stages of construction. It’s not just rental apartment seekers who are heading to eastern Bergen County for the ease of commute and competitive pricing. The for-sale market is also bustling. Less than ten minutes away from Fort Lee in Palisades Park, there are unique for-sale housing options that include new condominiums that satisfy the requirements of the large number of homebuyers entering local real estate offices. For example, Trio condominiums, just three miles from the George Washington Bridge, continues to draw former New York City residents who have decide to
examine homeownership opportunities in New Jersey and conducted searches along the more chic and expensive communities further south.