Tag Archives: new jersey development

A New Jersey: Jersey City Surge

DN Cover JPEGDavid Barry and Ironstate Development are featured in today’s New York Daily News report on Jersey City development. Check out mentions of  URL Harborside, 18 Park, and 225 Grand.

Read the full article HERE.


Ironstate Development And Mack-Cali’s Harborside Development Receives $33 Million Tax Credit From The NJEDA

URL Harborside$291 Million Mixed-Use Project to Rise Along Jersey City Waterfront 

Hoboken, New Jersey, October 24, 2013— Ironstate Development Company and Mack-Cali Realty Corporation (NYSE: CLI) announced today that their URL™ Harborside mixed-use development in Jersey City has been awarded $33 million in tax credits from the New Jersey Economic Development Authority (NJEDA).

The $291 million development, the first phase of a project that will feature three residential towers along the Jersey City waterfront, was chosen under a competitive solicitation by the NJEDA as part of its efforts to encourage significant redevelopment in urban centers and to support diverse business expansion and retention in the garden state.  The award is consistent with the recently signed New Jersey Economic Opportunity Act of 2013. The project is expected to create approximately 700 construction jobs.

“A development of this magnitude will increase the level of economic activity in one of New Jersey’s key urban centers,” said David Barry, President of Ironstate Development Company.  “This will be a transformative project that will introduce an innovative new lifestyle alternative to the marketplace and help encourage additional investment in the City.”

The joint-venture partners will break ground later this year on URL™ Harborside (Urban Ready Living™), a multi-phase development that will ultimately include three residential rental towers, ancillary retail space, and parking. It will add a vibrant housing component to Jersey City’s Harborside, Mack-Cali’s waterfront “city within a city” office complex. The first phase of the project will consist of a 69-story tower with 763 apartment units built on a parking pedestal.

The innovative design of URL™ Harborside allows for tremendous living density in a small footprint. Residents will enjoy contemporary living spaces, on-site amenities, breathtaking Manhattan skyline views and convenient access to adjacent mass-transit options.

“Being awarded the NJEDA tax credit is an important step toward developing Harborside to its full potential,” said Mitchell E. Hersh, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mack-Cali. “The URL™ Harborside project is consistent with our growth strategy of pursuing multi-family residential development opportunities in supply constrained markets.  This furthers our creation of a true Work-Live-Play environment at Harborside.”

About Ironstate Development Company

Ironstate Development Company is one of the largest privately held real estate development companies in the Northeast. Based in Hoboken, New Jersey, Ironstate engages in the development and management of large-scale mixed-use projects and has a diverse portfolio of residential and hospitality assets.

Additional information on Ironstate Development Company is available on the Company’s website at http://www.ironstate.net.

About Mack-Cali Realty Corporation

Mack-Cali Realty Corporation is a fully integrated, self-administered, self-managed real estate investment trust (REIT) providing management, leasing, development, construction and other tenant-related services for its class A real estate portfolio. Mack-Cali owns or has interests in 275 properties consisting of 266 office and office/flex properties totaling approximately 30.7 million square feet and nine multi-family rental properties containing over 3,300 residential units, all located in the Northeast. The properties enable the Company to provide a full complement of real estate opportunities to its diverse base of commercial and residential tenants.

Additional information on Mack-Cali Realty Corporation is available on the Company’s website at http://www.mackcali.com.

Statements made in this press release may be forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as “may,” “will,” “plan,” “potential,” “should,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “estimate,” “continue,” or comparable terminology. Such forward-looking statements are inherently subject to certain risks, trends and uncertainties, many of which the Company cannot predict with accuracy and some of which the Company might not even anticipate, and involve factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected or suggested. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements and are advised to consider the factors listed above together with the additional factors under the heading “Disclosure Regarding Forward-Looking Statements” and “Risk Factors” in the Company’s Annual Reports on Form 10-K, as may be supplemented or amended by the Company’s Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q, which are incorporated herein by reference. The Company assumes no obligation to update or supplement forward-looking statements that become untrue because of subsequent events, new information or otherwise.

An Ironclad Growth Plan


By Joshua Burd

Ironstate Development principals David, left, and Michael Barry at the site of 18 Park, a 422-unit residential building in Jersey City.




The ability to stick to a plan has always been a key strength of David and Michael Barry. Like their father and grandfather, who founded the development business they now lead, the brothers have stayed atop the industry by staying true to a strategy of building their multifamily and mixed-use projects around the state’s bustling urban centers.

But that hasn’t stopped Ironstate Development from evolving under the brothers’ watch. In recent years, the firm has become a player in the region’s hotel market, and the Barrys are now expanding its reach beyond traditional hubs like Hoboken and Jersey City.

“We’re not single-family homebuilders, we’re not suburban office builders, we’re not strip mall builders or any of those things,” David Barry said from his firm’s Hoboken office. “So when you talk about what we do, which is building multifamily at scale, you need places that are going to accommodate that.”

Multifamily has weathered the storms of the troubled real estate market, helping to expand Ironstate’s pipeline and portfolio in recent years. The development firm of about 50, which descends from the family’s Applied Housing Co., has added more than 1,600 residential units, 55,000 square feet of retail and two hotels since 2007.

The Barrys’ firm now owns and manages more than 6,000 residential units, and has a $1 billion project pipeline that includes another 7,100 units, according to the firm. Its upcoming projects also include 193,500 square feet of retail and some 200 hotel rooms.

Ironstate stuck to its core markets during the recession, completing the signature W Hoboken Hotel and the 93-unit Berkshire, in Hoboken, and large joint venture apartment projects like 225 Grand and 50 Columbus, in Jersey City. The firm also built and opened a luxury rental building in Harrison during the downturn, in what was the first phase of a redevelopment project with the Pegasus Group.

“On the rental side, the economics were still there,” Michael Barry said, noting that the apartment market is “somewhat countercyclical” to condominiums. “So even though the market had fallen apart across the board, there are still opportunities for good, well-placed development, particularly in the rental sector.”

But with space in those areas running low, Ironstate has looked toward new markets to extend its large-scale, transit-centric brand of development. In the past three years, the firm has stepped into the five boroughs of New York, where it now has seven properties or sites under development. That includes a $150 million redevelopment project on Staten Island, where plans call for transforming a former naval base into a waterfront village with 900 residential units and 30,000 square feet of retail.

The firm opened a Manhattan office in February, given that the city “fits that mold and (is) an area where we can leverage our expertise in a profitable fashion,” Michael Barry said.

Despite being third-generation developers, David and Michael Barry said the business was never meant to be a dynasty. The South Orange natives became active with what was Applied Development Co. in the early 1990s, with David joining after a stint as a practicing attorney and Michael after finishing graduate school.

They effectively took the reins and formed Ironstate in 2001 after their father, Joseph Barry, retired as head of the company. And while their work often overlaps, each brother as an owner has his own role: as president of Ironstate Development, David spearheads the firm’s pipeline, while Michael oversees construction and management of the firm’s portfolio as president of Ironstate Holdings LLC.

But together, the Barrys have built the firm’s reputation for creativity and a cutting-edge approach, industry colleagues say, and Ironstate has become a sought-after partner for other developers. For instance, by year’s end, Ironstate and Edison-based Mack-Cali Realty Corp. will break ground on a three-tower rental project of more than 2,000 units on the Jersey City waterfront.

Mack-Cali CEO Mitchell Hersh, whose firm primarily develops office buildings, said the Barrys “bring a great deal of local market knowledge and experience to the table,” plus the ability to put their own equity capital into the project.

Ironstate also is partnering with Kushner Real Estate Group, in Bridgewater, on three upcoming projects totaling 1,500 apartment units in Jersey City. Jonathan Kushner, the firm’s president, said the relationship goes back about seven years, fueled in part by the Barrys’ “forward-thinking” approach and pulse on the market.

“In terms of apartment design and layouts, unit sizes and curb appeal, amenity spaces, lobby designs — they’re always on top of it, and they’re always ahead of the market,” Kushner said.

The brothers also try to guide their residential projects using their hospitality experience, from revamping management systems to putting art in the lobbies.

They have had plenty of practice in recent years, they said: Aside from the W Hoboken, Ironstate in 2009 opened the Bungalow, a boutique hotel that’s part of the ongoing Pier Village development in Long Branch. The firm also recently acquired the former Cooper Square Hotel, in Manhattan, and is renovating it in partnership with hotelier Andre Balazs. Meanwhile, in Harrison, Ironstate is preparing to break ground on a new 136-room hotel, part of its venture with Pegasus.

The Barrys attribute their success in part to how they manage volume, through a close circle of about 10 key executives, and refusal to stray from their expertise in development. Instead, Ironstate brings in professionals in construction, architecture and marketing to cover those project phases.

Such was the case in the early 2000s, when Ironstate set out to build the W Hoboken, one of its first hotel projects. Robert Siegel, the architect, recalled that the brothers hired a prominent consultant for Starwood’s W brand to complement their own experience in the city. Ironstate also allowed his design firm — Gwathmey, Siegel, Kaufman & Associates — to take the creative lead in the 27-story tower.

That sort of collaboration helps lead to success, Siegel said.

“A lot of it has to do with being intelligent enough to find the good opportunities to pursue, and then having the confidence to work with people to make it happen,” he said. “They’re great at that.”


Harrison Station Developers Band Together As Port Authority Fund Platform Rehab



The area around the Harrison PATH
station is being transformed into a
24/7 mixed-use community.

HARRISON, NJ-When the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey announced this week it would move ahead with replacing the antiquated platform at the Harrison train station, six major developers at work in the surrounding community cheered with coordinated gusto.

Very coordinated. Possessing all the polished synchronicity of a champion cheerleading squad, in fact –a rare mode for competitive developers at any time, but perhaps most unusual in the midst of economic crunch times. “It is highly unique, I think,”Peter J. Cocoziello, president and CEO of Advanced Realty, tells GlobeSt.com.

“We have formed our own association to collectively cheer everyone on in getting the master plan underway for Harrison to become a true 24-hour, live-work-play community.” Advance is the so-called master developer for the 245-acre project begun 10 years ago. The massive retooling of a deteriorated site dating to the Industrial Revolution took longer than originally expected. The Red Bulls soccer arena and several condominiums besides the Passaic River were completed in the past few years.

Then, last summer, the 275-unit Harrison Station rental apartments opened and leased up with surprising speed. This spring and summer construction is about to “go vertical” on a second rental building and a hotel; meanwhile, demolition work is underway so work can begin early next year on a retail center with housing above it.

Now, with the train station funding, executives from six companies that are part of the newHarrison Redevelopment Association and spoke to GlobeSt.Com say the overall project is back on track. One of Advance’s fellow developers in Harrison, Carl J. Goldberg, the principal of Roseland Property Co., says, “The project was bogged down for many years while remediation work was done and infrastructure was installed, which gave it an unfortunate reputation for a while.”

Recently, says Goldberg, Harrison’s longtime mayor Raymond McDonough appealed to the developers, asking them to help jumpstart the overall development again. All responded enthusiastically, and said they have found it surprisingly exhilarating to work in concert. “The new train station is going to be a game-changer,” says Cocoziello after the Port Authority formally voted Monday to authorize the $250 million replacement of the 76-year-old existing station, starting work next year.

“It will create Harrison as a true destination, with a gorgeous new glass-and–steel station facility providing an incredibly quick commute to New York via the PATH. Harrison is actually closer to New York than Midtown is to downtown.” “We are all thrilled, as a group and as individual companies,” adds Goldberg, who said the developers’ group met with New Jersey officials several months ago to advocate for expediting the Port Authority funding.

“Our feeling at this point is really the more developers in the project, the better,” says Edward Russo, president of Russo Development, whose company purchased a piece of property from Roseland 18 months ago. “Even though, to some extent, we compete with one another, we are all looking to create a community.”

Executives from the various development companies, including Ironstate Development, Pegasus Group, and Heller Industrial Parks detailed these current projects:

• Russo will begin vertical construction of a 300-unit rental apartment building in May or June.

Ironstate, which opened the first apartments adjacent to the train station last July, will start work this summer on a 138-unit Element by Starwood hotel.

• Roseland plans a late-summer start on a 141-unit rental building beside its condominium development.

Heller expects to begin work on a building with ground-floor retail and 65 rental units above, as soon as demolition of a building across Frank E. Rogers Boulevard from the Harrison Station apartments is complete.

Work on the train station is expected to take roughly three years. The existing station, built in 1936, will be replaced with a modern glass-walled structure and the platform expanded to accommodate longer trains at a stop that already handles an average 7,000 commuters per day.


By JOSEPH DE AVILA/The Wall Street Journal

Rental apartment construction in New Jersey is poised for a resurgence in 2012 with more than 2,000 apartments expected to hit the market by the end of the year.

During the past decade, New Jersey’s coastline was transformed by a wave of high-rise condo development in areas like Jersey City and Hoboken. After the housing crash, builders put the brakes on adding new condos and single-family homes.

The market for new single-family homes continues to be weak, but the pace of luxury apartment construction is picking up as builders look to take advantage of low apartment vacancies, higher rents and an improving job market. And while lenders are still skittish about financing large condo projects, real-estate developers say the money is there for apartment buildings.

“Now we are near historical rent highs and vacancy lows—that usually means it’s time to build,” said Brian Whitmer of brokerage firm Cushman & Wakefield. “All the towns along the waterfront have construction going on.”

Fewer than 1,300 apartments were built in New Jersey in 2011, but that number is expected to more than double in 2012, according to real-estate services firm Marcus & Millichap. That would be the most since 2007 when more than 3,700 were built.

Most of those new apartments will be built in Northern New Jersey, but some 800 units will also be constructed in Central New Jersey, according to Marcus & Millichap. The median rent statewide is also expected to spike 4% this year, reaching $1,322 a month.

New Jersey’s job market showed improvement in 2011 as 39,400 new jobs were created, according to the New Jersey Labor Department. The unemployment rate dropped to 9% in December, its lowest level since May 2009, but remains high by historical standards.

“The economy is slowly healing. Nothing is on fire,” said Michael Barry of Ironstate Development, a major real-estate developer with about 5,500 apartments planned or under construction in the state. “In that environment, rental apartments do well.”

Tighter lending standards have made it more difficult for some people to buy apartments, pushing them into rental market, said Carl Goldberg, managing partner of Roseland Property, one of the state’s most active builders. That has coincided with a shift in attitudes toward home ownership for some young people, he added.

“The idea of living in an apartment community with amenities, not having the anxiety of the investment” of a home, Mr. Goldberg said. “It seems to be very appealing.”

One such renter is Alex Jung, 32 years old. With his brother, he pays $3,600 a month for a two-bedroom apartment in an amenity-rich, 500-unit building in Jersey City developed by Roseland Property.

“I need time to decide if I want to buy or not,” Mr. Jung said. So he opted to rent in a building that has a mix of young singles living with roommates, newlyweds and young families. Amenities there include a heated outdoor pool, a theater and 24-hour concierge service.

“This was close to the PATH, I can see nice views of Manhattan, it’s very close to Manhattan and I work in Fort Lee,” Mr. Jung said.

Roseland Property is betting that demand for rental apartments will continue as the economy continues on its slow recovery. The company is building a $120 million project in West New York that will have around 320 units and is expected to finish in 2013. Roseland also is starting a new project with Hartz Mountain Industries in Weehawken where they will build four midrise buildings with about 580 units.

The state’s Urban Transit Hub Tax Credit has been another catalyst for apartment construction, said Michael Fasano of Marcus & Millichap. “The development community has reacted strongly to it,” he said.

Under the program, the state has allocated $250 million in tax credits for residential development near transit stations. About $220 million has already been approval for residential projects, most of them rentals.

Ironstate Development, along with a team of investors, received a $28.3 million tax credit to build a 500-unit apartment development in Jersey City. The total cost of the project is estimated at $162.6 million.

The tax credit helps bridge the gap between the what lenders were willing finance before the housing crash and the reduced amounts banks are comfortable lending now, said Mr. Barry of Ironstate.

As more people opt to rent, that means some former condo projects are switching to rental. BNE Real Estate is constructing a 139-unit rental building in Jersey City and another with 194 units in Fort Lee. Both were intended to be condos before the market turned, said Jonathan Schwartz, vice president of BNE.

“The condo market is by no means where it should be or where it was once upon a time,” Mr. Schwartz said. “We are happy to get back to rentals.”

—Pervaiz Shallwani contributed to this article.

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