Author Topic: Area in need of Rehabilitation  (Read 203049 times)

Offline Editor

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #45 on: March 06, 2013, 11:29:22 PM »
Hackensack parking study recommends new meters, garage repairs
By Myles Ma/NJ.com
March 06, 2013 at 8:20 AM, updated March 06, 2013 at 8:32 AM

DMR ArchitectsAn artist's rendering of a revitalized, mixed-use downtown Hackensack. Read the rehabilitation plan

HACKENSACK The City Council adopted a study Tuesday night that calls for Hackensack to spend close to $500,000 to upgrade downtown parking.

The study's recommendations include replacing all the parking meters in the downtown area and installing more visible and attractive signs at public parking lots.

Hackensack asked Biers Associates to conduct the study in conjunction with a downtown rehabilitation plan that seeks to spur new development in the city.

"The vision this Council has put forward for the future of Hackensack is about more than bricks and mortar," City Manager Stephen LoIacono said in a press release. "This plan gives us some of the tools we will need to make sure residents and visitors can actually get where they want to go."

Bier Associates reviewed on-street and off-street parking areas as part of its study. It recommended that the city replace its downtown parking meters and raise parking meter rates on Main Street from 25 cents to 50 cents an hour to increase parking turnover and keep business employees and owners from monopolizing the spaces.

Bier asked the city to create a five-year capital budget for for improvements to downtown parking garages and lots, particularly the garage on Atlantic Street, which the study said was in "fair to poor condition."

The study also looked at parking enforcement. Bier called for the city to hire two parking enforcement officers dedicated exclusively to downtown meters.

Bier looked at a number of ways the city could finance these improvements, including a tax on properties located near parking facilities and a tax on parking spaces.

To view the study, click here.
_____________________________________
City Press Release: 3/5/13
City of Hackensack
65 Central Avenue
Hackensack, NJ 07601

HACKENSACK CITY COUNCIL ADOPTS HACKENSACK PARKING STUDY
Study Sets Forth Several Recommendations to Make Parking in Main Street Corridor More Accessible and Convenient

The Hackensack City Council voted unanimously to adopt the Hackensack Parking Study, developed in consultation with Bier Associates to "effectively address and fund the present and future parking needs of downtown redevelopment, residents, shoppers, and business owners."

"We have no doubt that the path we are taking with the Redevelopment Plan will mean more restaurants, residences and retail opportunities in downtown Hackensack," stated Mayor Mike Melfi. "By looking ahead we are doing what we can to make sure no one can ever say 'Hackensack is a great place to live and visit but there is no parking'"

Among other things, the Hackensack Parking Study proposes that the City of Hackensack evaluate implementing new parking technology including the use of electronic meters, pay by cell and credit card enabled parking meters; maximizing the utilization of off-street parking facilities by offering overnight and off peak parking permits to downtown residents and central business district employees; and improving parking management and operations by centralizing all parking management within the Parking Utility.

In offering his own endorsement of the plan City Manager Stephen LoIacono said that "the vision this Council has put forward for the future of Hackensack is about more than bricks and mortar, this plan gives us some of the tools we will need to make sure residents and visitors can actually get to where they want to go."

"Too often we find that government is reactive instead of proactive" stated Jerry Lombardo, President of the Hackensack Upper Main Street Alliance. "As they have done throughout this entire process the City Council and the professionals involved in the redevelopment of Hackensack's Main Street corridor have anticipated the needs of what I know will soon be a thriving downtown." A copy of Resolution No. 97-213, including the parking study, approved tonight is attached to this distribution

Offline just watching

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #46 on: March 07, 2013, 06:50:24 AM »
The city singlehandedly put Lowits out of business by reducing the meters from 2 hours to 1 hour. They were an anchor store specializing in men's suits.  Even people eating a restaurant expect that they might spend over an hour.  While they are evaluating the meters, they should consider going back to 2 hours.  Increasing from 25 to 50 cents isn't going to help.  It's going to drive people away, just like it did generations ago when downtown Hackensack was competing with two open-air, non-enclosed shopping malls that had free parking.

Offline Homer Jones

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #47 on: March 07, 2013, 10:25:24 AM »
Wow! I haven't heard the "parking meter put him/ me out of business " argument for years. Parking meters had absolutely nothing to do with Lowits closing. For the sake of newcomers to this site, Lowits was a haberdashery store selling mens better name brand clothing including suits, sports clothes and their accessories. Men went to Lowits to get personal service and fitting for their big ticket purchases. During Main Street's golden years, Lowits and Tfanks served that market.

 Beginning in the 1970's Main Street began it's decline and persons who appreciated the quality and service offered by these two stores began to gravitate to clothiers found in the malls such as Sacks and Bloomingdales which were open in the evening and which provided more ambiance for their customers. In later years similar mens stores such as Joseph A. Banks began to open in the malls also.
These were national and international chains and not sole proprietorships.

Jack Linden who owned the store and subsequently his son David recognized that customers relying on parking meters were not their market. They owned two parking lots which served the rear entrance to the store. There was one directly behind the store and another across the street on Moore Street. The customer who had ordered let's say a few suits would use these lots. Walk in customers from 210 Main Street or other offices might walk to the front entrance at lunch time. It was the erosion of their customer base which caused the closing of these and other upper income oriented stores. They also did not have the purchasing power or advertising resources to compete profitably.

If there were parking meters that even PAID customers to park there all day, there would be absolutely no difference .

Offline irons35

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #48 on: March 07, 2013, 10:56:15 AM »
Quite true Homer, however, in the scheme of meters, I would rather go to the mall and park all day, shop and then sit down and have lunch and not worry about a meter maid tagging my car while I was having coffee.  one hour  and even two hour meters dont afford any time to do anything but one or two quick errands.   

Offline Weegee

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #49 on: March 07, 2013, 10:57:45 AM »
Who pays for parking in lot T?   

Offline just watching

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #50 on: March 08, 2013, 06:43:07 AM »
Homer makes some good points on Lowits, but David Linden actually did complain publicly about the parking meters, perhaps to shift the blame away from Homer's points.  I wonder if that complaint is in the article about Lowits when they closed.  Unsure.

The whole parking matter is a big deal in downtown Hackensack.  I had thought that the city picked the location of the new Cultural Arts Center so that it could utilize the Atlantic Street Parking Garage, but now I see over 100 spots will be going to the proposed apartment building on State Street. 

What happened to the original idea, that the parking garage would be for shoppers and diners ?


Offline Editor

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #51 on: March 08, 2013, 10:55:12 AM »
Hackensack looks to overhaul parking
Friday, March 8, 2013    Last updated: Friday March 8, 2013, 10:04 AM
BY  HANNAN ADELY
STAFF WRITER
The Record

HACKENSACK The City Council will consider raising parking fees, installing electronic meters and creating a parking utility all recommendations made in a new parking study.

City officials are looking for ways to make downtown parking easier for visitors and businesses as it carries out a rehabilitation plan in the area. The study, by New Brunswick-based consultant Bier Associates, was adopted Tuesday as a blueprint for improvements.

The recommendations include an increase in meter rates from 25 to 50 cents an hour, and a $5 to $10 increase in permit fees.

Meter rates havent gone up since January 1996 and are lower than other county seats in New Jersey, said Leonard Bier, principal of Bier Associates, during a December presentation to the council.

He noted an oddity in current fee structures: Parking costs 50 cents per hour on many side streets, but 25 cents on Main Street, where parking is usually preferred and closer to business doorsteps.

Bier Associates also recommends changing mechanical meters to electronic ones because upkeep is cheaper and requires less labor.

Other recommendations: Repair and upgrade parking facilities; raise parking fines from $22 to $32; install more on-street meters; enforce time limits; allow payment by cellphone and credit card; and create separate rates for day and night parking permits.

The city should also consider creating a parking utility to manage it all, according to the study. Parking utilities, like those in Hoboken and Trenton, are semi-independent bodies in charge of operations and revenue collection. Parking utilities in New Jersey have executive directors, operating budgets and debt service separate from the municipality, and the ability to set rates and fees.

But the local governing body has ultimate jurisdiction over rates, fees, capital projects budget and personnel. Profit from parking revenues would also be turned over to the citys general fund.

Hackensacks police and public works departments and the tax office split parking maintenance, enforcement and revenue collection duties, an arrangement Bier said has led to a "mish-mosh" operation and inadequate maintenance.

"Theres no real guidance and overall thought as to whats going on," he said.

Bier Associates suggested ways the city could finance improvements, including a tax on properties located near parking facilities and shared parking agreements with developers.

The council is considering an ordinance introduced Tuesday to allow developers to lease municipal parking spaces to reduce their own parking requirements.

"This plan gives us some of the tools we will need to make sure residents and visitors can actually get to where they want to go," said City Manager Stephen Lo Iacono.

He said he plans to hire two parking enforcement officers, following one of the recommendations, to work full-time hours, days and evenings, Monday through Saturday.

No salary has been set, but Lo Iacono said the revenue earned would more than cover their pay.

"It's more than a revenue issue," he said. "It's an issue of making the parking system work better."

Email: adely@northjersey.com

Offline Editor

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #52 on: March 08, 2013, 07:50:47 PM »
Hackensack parking study approved; new regulations to be instated
Friday March 8, 2013, 4:30 PM
BY  JENNIFER VAZQUEZ
NEWS EDITOR
Hackensack Chronicle

Redevelopment

Hackensack - The City Council accepted a downtown parking system review report and has passed a resolution adopting the recommendations contained within on March 5, according to city officials.

The report, entitled "City of Hackensack Downtown Parking System Review," was prepared by Bier Associates and dated January 18, 2013.

The report's suggested recommendations will total an estimated $424,400 -with a recurring annual cost, which includes maintenance and the salary of the two hired Parking Enforcement Officers (PEO), of $149,500.

According to the resolution adopted on March 5, "the scope of the analysis conducted by Brier Associates included a review of current parking rates, rules, regulations and restrictions, an analysis of how public parking resources can support the Main Street Rehabilitations Area and Plan adopted...providing suggestions for improving and optimizing operations, an analysis of methods for making parking more convenient to users, outlining potential revenue enhancements, recommending management solutions, providing guidance concerning policy options and evaluating shared parking options."

After the completion of the study, recommendations were made to: "enhance parking patron user convenience;" "maximize the utilization of the parking assets;" "optimize operations and management;" "provide parking for local businesses and residents;" and "generate adequate revenue to cover operating and capital maintenance costs."

For example, in order to generate sufficient revenue to cover costs, Bier makes various suggestions based on other municipalities with similar size within New Jersey. According to the report, Bier Associates suggest adjusting Main Street and other on-street parking meters rates from 25 to 50 cents per hour as well as increasing monthly permit rates at parking lots and garages. The study states that in 2011 revenues from parking were in excess of $1.3 million. This revenue included permit and parking meter fees. Though a projected revenue is not in place, officials expect an increase following the recommendations taking place.

"We have no projected revenues but we do expect for our revenue to go up," City Manager Stephen Lo Iacono said.

According to Bier's report, Hackensack's downtown has an approximate "2,559 parking spaces consisting of approximately 2,012 off-street meter and permit spaces and 547 on-street meters."

Recommendations for the city to hire two PEOs were also made. The report states that this recommendation was made because "inconsistent enforcement of parking regulations is detrimental to the parking program as it catches people unaware and provides the impression that parking enforcement is unpredictable, arbitrary and capricious.

Lo Iacono said that this recommendation is in the process of being implemented, sooner rather than later.

"We are in the process of hiring two Parking Enforcement Officers," he said. "We want to spread their assigned coverage. Right now our PEOs work during regular business hours, Monday through Friday. We would like to stretch this time by a couple more hours a day and include Saturdays."

Another recommendation made by Brier is for the city to have a centralized parking management department that controls all ordinances, fees and fines that have to do with municipal parking because "[w]hen parking functions are divided between multiple city departments, no single department or manager has the full authority to plan, supervise, and operate municipal parking services. Due to this lack of centralization, there is less master planning, performance analysis, and control of the entire parking system and operations."

Lo Iacono mentioned that the recommendation to centralize the parking management department is "essential" but is not currently being worked on.

The report also makes suggestions as to how the city can finance these improvements -such as taxing on properties located near parking facilities and a tax on parking spaces.

"[Taxing these properties] is something we are not looking to do at the moment," he said.

According to the resolution adopted, "the scope of the analysis conducted by Brier Associates included a review of current parking rates, rules, regulations and restrictions, an analysis of how public parking resources can support the Main Street Rehabilitations Area and Plan adopted...providing suggestions for improving and optimizing operations, an analysis of methods for making parking more convenient to users, outlining potential revenue enhancements, recommending management solutions, providing guidance concerning policy options and evaluating shared parking options."

Email: vazquez@northjersey.com

Offline just watching

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #53 on: March 09, 2013, 08:48:30 AM »
The Parking Nazi's are coming to Hackensack.  Maybe they can be issued swastika's on their shirt sleeves.

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #54 on: March 15, 2013, 11:41:48 AM »
Hackensack names Meridia company redeveloper for rehabilitation site
Friday, March 15, 2013
BY  JENNIFER VAZQUEZ
NEWS EDITOR
Hackensack Chronicle

HACKENSACK The city has taken a big step forward in making its highly anticipated redevelopment plan come into fruition.
 
Buy or license this photo The city council designated Meridia Metro Urban Renewal as the conditional redeveloper of a parcel of land on State Street. This site will be developed into a 222-unit apartment building.

During the March 5 City Council meeting, three resolutions concerning the State Street property and Meridia were introduced.

The first resolution introduced, conditionally designates Meridia as the redeveloper of the area for 90 days during which negotiations and the execution of an agreement will be completed.

Meridia State the proposed name of the future apartment building will be a six-story apartment building, that includes a ground garage with space for 141 spots with five floors of one- and two- bedroom apartments: 86 one-bedroom and 136 two-bedroom units.

A financial agreement, another of the resolutions introduced, proposed a 30-year tax abatement on the State Street property. This tax abatement will incrementally increase. In the first six years, the developer would pay the greater amount between two options: either $1,200 a unit totaling $266,400 for all 222 units or 2 percent of the total cost of the project. From the seventh to eleventh year, these two options remain as well as the addition of a third one allowing for the payment of 20 percent of the property taxes that would have, otherwise, been paid. With passing years the percentage increases to 40 percent, then 60 percent, and then 80 percent.

City Manager Stephen Lo Iacono addressed the reasons as to why the city had to offer incentives as it had to entice redevelopers to that area.

"If this project were taxed at the full tax rate [the tax revenue] would be much greater but there would be no project," Lo Iacono said. "There would be no project because it would not be economically feasible [for a developer] to have a project like this built on that property unless there was some incentive like this PILOT [Payment In Lieu Of Taxes] agreement."

Mayor Michael Melfi agreed.

"Building in this area, we think it is in the city's best interest to offer this incentive," he said.

When the topic of the Avalon apartment complex came up by a Hackensack resident, Lo Iacono said the two situations are completely different.

"We had people competing for the Avalon site, they wanted to build something it was that valuable of a site," he said.

The final resolution introduced suggests allowing leasing 120 parking spaces in municipal parking garages and lots for Meridia State residents. The rate under the agreement states "for the years one through fivethe Fixed Monthly Rent shall be $64,800.00, which equates to a monthly parking space amount equal to $45.00 per space." After the initial five years, this amount will increase periodically.

Councilman Jorge Meneses, along with the rest of the council, shared positive senti-ments towards the upcoming project.

"State Street is coming up, finally, after years of being an eye sore," he said.

Councilwoman Karen Sasso thanked the the council for their work in making the project steer towards becoming a reality.

"I want to commend the council for all that they did," she said. "This is a very exciting time."

Melfi concluded the discussion of the Meridia matter by addressing all in attendance.

"Our downtown is going to be better than it is now, for sure."
« Last Edit: June 04, 2013, 04:29:40 PM by Editor »

Offline Editor

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #55 on: March 18, 2013, 11:02:40 AM »

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #56 on: March 26, 2013, 11:26:10 AM »
$19.2 million apartment building planned for run-down Hackensack block

State Street in Hackensack
View the Slideshow
(Gallery by Myles Ma/NJ.com)

By  Myles Ma/NJ.com   
on March 26, 2013 at 6:05 AM, updated March 26, 2013 at 6:11 AM

HACKENSACK Plans are in place for a 222-unit apartment building to rise on a State Street block currently defined by trash-strewn gravel lots and a vacant Chase Bank.

The City Council on March 19 officially named Meridia Metro Urban Renewal the developer of the apartments.

The apartment will have 86 one-bedroom units and 136 two-bedroom units on five floors over parking. Construction should start in June and finish in January 2015.

The project is expected to cost an estimated $19.2 million.

The Council also adopted a payment in lieu of taxes program that will pay Hackensack $1,200 per apartment, for a total of $266,400 per year. Alternatively, Meridia could pay the city 2 percent of the total cost of the development, depending on which is greater.

The PILOT program will last 30 years. City officials, in a press release, said the earnings from the PILOT would exceed what the $80,000 it collects annually from the site now, and demonstrate its commitment to the project.

The project represents the first tangible sign of progress in the Main Street Rehabilitation Plan, which seeks to overhaul Hackensack's downtown by encouraging mixed-use development. Adopted in June, the plan calls for an easier building approval process and two-way traffic on Main Street.

Offline Victor E Sasson

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #57 on: April 15, 2013, 02:33:59 PM »
A new restaurant and deli on Main Street are signs of hope the street is coming back, but other blocks are still looking forlorn. I don't agree with the City Council's strategy of offering a 30-year tax break for a 222-unit luxury apartment building on State Street, but hope when the tenants arrive in a couple of years, they will support Main Street merchants, assuming they are still in business.

A welcome sign of renewal in Hackensack


http://doyoureallyknowwhatyoureeating.blogspot.com/2013/04/a-welcome-sign-of-renewal-in-hackensack.html

Offline just watching

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #58 on: April 15, 2013, 08:35:47 PM »
Victor, the vision of the city's downtown becoming an attractive place for upscale rental construction has to start somewhere.  The economy and the real estate market are still weak, so it has become necessary to offer the perks that the city has offered to make this FIRST and MOST IMPORTANT project succeed.  I support that goal 100%, and I understand that both slates running in the election also support it. Future projects might not be getting the same incentives, and that won't be a problem.

Once one big 200+ unit building is built, or even under construction, that becomes the encouragement for other builders to come in along the entire Main/State corridor. Nobody wants to be the first, but everyone will want to join the party. This is going to be one of the most sought-after development locations in the entire State. Builders we've never heard of will be beating down the city's doors, looking for a piece of the action. The long-term potential is more than just helping the retail stores and restaurants, and encouraging more high-end retailers and restaurants.  All these units in all these buildings are going to pay a lot of taxes, and much like Prospect Ave they won't be filling the schools or draining police and social services. Property values will rise in the entire area, and that means more tax revenue flowing out of the downtown.

1000 units is about 1/3 of what's on Prospect Ave. If we had that in the downtown it would make a huge difference in the retail climate.  I think the potential exists for at least 5000 units, including the Record campus, vacant and downtrodden areas around Essex & Fair Streets, all around Foschini Park, and nearby areas on River Street.  And possibly a name brand high-end hotel, which has been a planning goal for the downtown for over 30 years.

Offline Editor

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Re: Area in need of Rehabilitation
« Reply #59 on: May 06, 2013, 10:01:54 AM »
Real estate execs tout Fort Lee, Hackensack projects
Friday, May 3, 2013    Last updated: Friday May 3, 2013, 8:18 AM
BY  LINDA MOSS
STAFF WRITER
The Record

NEWARK Real estate executives Thursday offered updates on major redevelopment projects that they said could transform Fort Lee and Hackensack.


An executive with Tucker Development Corp. said the company will break ground in July on the first phase of Hudson Lights, a mixed-use project on the former Helmsley tract in downtown Fort Lee. The developer plans a pedestrian-friendly "streetscape" in the center's retail heart.

Robert Clark, vice president of development for Tucker, which is based in Highland Park, Ill., said at a real estate roundtable that the first phase will entail the construction of 112,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space and 276 rental units.

The Hudson Lights project will be built on the western part of a 16-acre tract south of the George Washington Bridge.

Construction of the mixed-use development, which Tucker has been involved with since 2008, will kick off with the build-out of the initial retail space, three floors of parking above it, and eight levels of residential space on top of that, Clark told about 100 attendees at the roundtable sponsored by the Commerce and Industry Association of New Jersey, which is based in Paramus.

Tucker plans to rebuild a former road, Hudson Street, which will run north-south through phase one of Hudson Lights, Clark said.

"Hudson was one of the residential streets that was previously at this location," Clark said. "We are creating more of a cobblestone, pedestrian-oriented street. The retail really fronts onto that Hudson Street."

Hudson Street is meant to channel pedestrians through the new retail outlets to the existing ones on Main Street, he said. It will have 22 parking stalls, with time limited to 15 to 20 minutes, Clark said.

It will take roughly 22 months for the first phase of Hudson Lights to be completed, Clark said. During the second phase, a 175-room hotel, more retail space and another 200 residential units will be built, he added.

Hudson Lights will ultimately include about 175,000 square feet of retail space, 476 residential units and the hotel.

RFK in Manhattan is handling leasing for the retail space at Hudson Lights. The largest space is 13,000 square feet, Clark said.

"This is very small, eclectic-type retail national, regional and local tenants," he said.

Construction began last October on The Modern, the two 47-story residential towers that will occupy the eastern part of the site, whose borders are Bruce Reynolds Boulevard, Central Road, Main Street and Lemoine Avenue. Its developer is SJP Residential Properties.

Cost for construction of the two projects is estimated at $1 billion.

CIANJ held its roundtable at the Courtyard by Marriott in Newark, a new hotel that Tucker developed. Clark said that the Hudson Lights' Fort Lee hotel will be very similar to it in design.

Jerry Lombardo, president of real estate firm C.J.L. Lombardo Co., spoke about redevelopment efforts in Hackensack, and the effort of the city and its Special Improvement District, which he heads, to revitalize a 163-acre zone. That redevelopment area runs roughly from State Street to River Street, with Main Street in the middle, from Sears to the Bergen County Courthouse complex, Lombardo said.

To encourage development, the city has eased some of its building requirements, including creating a pre-approval board where builders can bounce their plans off city officials early on, Lombardo said.

"We wanted to make Hackensack shovel-ready for the development community," he said.

The SID is trying to forge a stronger relationship between downtown and Hackensack University Medical Center by encouraging the construction of medical offices on Essex Street and downtown, Lombardo said. He mentioned that Alfred Sanzari Enterprises is looking to build a medical-office building on a site it owns on Essex Street.

President and CEO David Sanzari said the proposed building, with 85,000 square feet, has received county and city approval.

To revive downtown, Lombardo said the city is encouraging residential development. As part of the redevelopment, builders will be able to build residential units over retail space, he said. Lombardo said he's encouraging Sanzari to make residential units a component of its Essex Street project.

Lombardo said that a 250-unit residential unit, with ground-level retail, will break ground on State Street on June 6. The developer is Capodagli Property Co. of West New York.

"We have many good sites," Lombardo said. "There's been some sites assembled already that are available A couple of them are under contract already. I know Roseland Development has been down there sniffing around. I ran into them actually walking down the street one day. They were looking at a couple of sites."

Roseland is owned by Mack-Cali Realty Corp.

When asked about Roseland's interest in Hackensack, Mack-Cali Chief Executive Mitchell Hersh said, "We look at everything,"

Email: moss@northjersey.com

 

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