Newark office building sold in an OZ, Garden State’s industrial market stays hot & more North Jersey real estate news

Newark office tower within Opportunity Zone finds a buyer
Newmark Knight Frank announced Tuesday the sale of 550 Broad Street in downtown Newark, NJBIZ reported. The brokerage was tapped earlier this year to market the 18-story office tower on behalf of its now former owners, Ridgewood-based Heritage Capital Group and German investment manager Dr. Peters Group. The 294,242-square-foot building, constructed in 1966, is located within a designated Opportunity Zone. The Real Deal reported last week on another OZ development site in downtown Newark hitting the market. NKF sought to sell 550 Broad Street on RealINSIGHT Marketplace, an auction platform owned by Bethesda, Maryland-based special servicer CWCapital. The new owner of the building, whose final sales price was not disclosed, is Millburn-based Fidelco Realty Group. Its chairman, Marc Berson, said in a statement that he was pleased to add 550 Broad Street to his firm’s Newark portfolio. “With the aggressive capital improvement plan we intend to implement over the next two years… we expect this building to lease up quickly and add more high quality corporate tenants to the burgeoning community that is developing in the northern end of downtown Newark,” Berson said. [NJBIZ] CORRECTION: A previous version of this paragraph said NKF owned RealINSIGHT. — Brian Baxter

North Jersey’s office, industrial market stays hot in Q2
The life sciences industry accounted for the largest office leases in northern New Jersey during the second quarter, the second consecutive quarter it has done so, according to RE-NJ, citing a Newmark Knight Frank market report. The real estate services firm noted that average asking rents in Garden State grew from $29.23 to $29.52 per-square-foot on a year-over-year basis, while availability increased by 20 basis points on a quarterly basis. NKF noted that the central New Jersey region had the largest trades and leases during the second quarter, the largest of which was the $38 million sale of East Brunswick’s One Tower Center, at 415,743 square feet. The priciest sale per square foot, at $165, was the trade of the 212,535-square-foot 6 Sylvan Way in Parsippany. In the industrial sector, which has remained a robust market in New Jersey in recent months, Cushman & Wakefield reported a record-low vacancy rate in the region at 3.3 percent. The average industrial asking rent rose to $9.27 per square foot during the second quarter. The largest lease inked in the second quarter was in South Brunswick, where an unnamed company took 593,720 square feet at 117 Interstate Boulevard, according to Cushman & Wakefield. A combined 15.1 million square feet of industrial transactions occurred between January and June. The brokerage said that 72.5 percent of deliveries in 2019 have been pre-leased, while 3.6 million square feet of industrial space are expected to be delivered during the rest of the year. [RE-NJ]

Bon Jovi’s 15-acre Middletown estate slated for sale
An 18,000-square foot, French chateau-inspired mansion in Monmouth County designed by New York-based architect Robert A.M. Stern has been listed for sale at an undisclosed sum by Christie’s International Real Estate, according to Forbes. While the outlet did not note the seller of the property at 722 Navesink River Road in Middletown, sleuthing from The Real Deal determined that the 15-acre estate is owned by John Bongiovi Jr., better known as the rock star Jon Bon Jovi. CBS News previously reported that the recording artist has lived on the property with his wife and four children since building the home in 1999. The listing, which is held by Christie’s affiliate Gloria Nilson & Co. Real Estate in Red Bank, states that Captain Kidd’s home has six bedrooms and seven bathrooms. It comes with a heated three-car garage, a large living room, grand fireplace, custom-designed parquet flooring and a heated outdoor pool. Four outbuildings, including a carriage house with three bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms and a private pub called the Shoe Inn, are also on the property, as is a 20th century stable that Bon Jovi used as a recording studio. [TRD]

Three development lots in Jersey City trade hands
Developers inked three separate acquisitions proximal to Jersey City’s Journal Square PATH station and the site of the Frank Gaurini Court House in Jersey City, NJBIZ reported. Grid Real Esate, a Jersey City-based brokerage, represented the sellers of the 7,800-square-foot 425 Hoboken Avenue, 4,400-square-foot 26 Oakland Avenue and the 4,700-square-foot 14-16 Oakland Avenue. Property records show that 425 Hoboken Avenue traded for $850,000 in May to a limited liability company. All three sites, as noted by JerseyDigs, are located with the Journal Square 2060 redevelopment zone. According to that plan, 425 Hoboken Avenue is zoned for a maximum building height of six stories, while the Oakland Avenue sites are permitted to have a maximum five stories. Jersey City’s Journal Square neighborhood has had a boom in redevelopment in recent years. The Real Deal reported in January on Murray Kushner’s KRE Group securing a $258 million loan for the second phase of its three-tower Journal Squared project. [NJBIZ]

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Bobbi Brown’s developer husband to save Montclair theater
A group of Montclair residents that includes the husband of makeup mogul Bobbi Brown — attorney and developer Steven Plofker — is seeking to restore a historic theater at 486 Bloomfield Avenue in Montclair, local news outlets reported. The consortium includes Plofker, fellow attorney Larry Slous, corporate strategist Andy Childs, marketer Vincenzo Onorati, actor Patrick Wilson and film and television producer Luke Parker Bowles has signed a lease with landlord Jesse Sayegh to reopen the Bellevue Theatre in Montclair. The theater, which opened in May 1922 but shut its doors in November 2017 after 95 years of operation, is now poised to undergo reconstruction and renovations that will bring in-theater dining and a bar space to the establishment by this November. The joint venture partners, who have formed a limited liability company called Highgate Hall, have been in talks for more than a year to revive the theater, which was closed after its last tenant, Bow-Tie Cinema, declined to renew its lease. Plofker, who co-founded Bobbi Brown Cosmetics with his wife in 1991, has been a resident of Montclair since marrying her in 1998. Montclair was also home to Brown’s first storefront in 2007. The couple, who have reportedly been developing a home in the Hamptons, sold an oceanfront Bay Head home for $3.6 million in 2017. [Montclair Local]

Luxury leasing milestones reached in Harrison, Weehawken
A group of developers recently announced key leasing milestones at luxury rental projects along the Hudson River waterfront in northern New Jersey, an area known as the Gold Coast that in recent years has a seemingly never-ending pipeline of residential units. The Maxal Group and Hartz Mountain Industries, who began leasing four months ago at Weehawken’s 236-unit Harbor 1500, announced commitments for 177 units in late June. The development at 1500 Harbor Boulevard in Weehawken’s Lincoln Harbor section extends 764 feet into the Hudson River and is adjacent to Hartz Mountain’s Estuary apartment complex and the Lincoln Harbor Yacht Club. Nine miles inland, in downtown Harrison, Advance Realty Investors and DeBartolo Development announced that 50 percent of their 280-unit Cobalt Lofts were committed seven months after leasing commenced. Cobalt Lofts is near Advance Realty’s Steel Works luxury rental project that opened in 2017 with units starting at $1,950 per month. Cobalt Lofts is also part of Harrison’s Riverbend District, which when completed will add 3,000 units and 100,000 square feet of retail space near the town’s PATH station. [NJBIZ]

Condo boards spur renos in Cliffside Park, North Bergen
A four-year repositioning of the 1972-built Briarcliff building at 250 George Street in Cliffside Park has been completed, NJBIZ reported. Steven Kratchman Architect said the project resulted in a rebranding of the 315-unit residential complex, now called the Apogee, and a revitalization of the building’s lobby and resident amenities. The New York-based design firm began renovations at the complex in 2014. The project, which reportedly cost $5 million, was spurred by the growth in condominium construction in the area hiked the average sales price in the complex by nearly 13 percent, as of December. Floor plans at the Apogee range from 796 to 1,646 square feet and start at $210,000. In the nearby Township of North Bergen, a three-year, $6.1 million capital improvement project has also been completed at the 300-unit Parker Imperial tower. The renovations included external and mechanical restorations and common area refurbishments. Coldwell Banker, which is marketing several units at the Parker Imperial, said its co-op board has planned additional improvements at the complex, such as lobby renovations. [NJBIZ]

Texas firm joins industrial new dev spree in North Jersey
Dallas-based Crow Holdings recently broke ground at a 925,000-square-foot facility in Franklin Township, GlobeSt reported. Cushman & Wakefield will market the industrial spec space at 50 Veronica Avenue, which expects to be ready to accept deliveries in the first quarter of 2020. The space, called Crow Holdings at Veronica Avenue, includes 40-foot clear ceilings, 394 car spaces, 170 trailer spots and four drive-in ramps. Property records show that a limited liability company associated with Crow Holdings bought two sites in January at 50 Veronica Avenue and at 1089 U.S. Route 27 for a combined $7.1 million. The same LLC owns a total of 64.2 acres in Franklin Township. In the nearby town of South Brunswick, GlobeSt reported that an apparel company signed a 10-year lease brokered by JLL for a 203,488-square-foot warehouse and distribution facility under construction at 85 Stults Road. New York-based Adjmi Apparel signed the lease for the site, which is owned by EverWest Real Estate Investors and Accordia Realty Ventures. Almost 50 miles north in the Township of Sparta, Berardi Development, Joe Maggio Concrete and Masonry and NAI James E. Hanson recently broke ground on a 10,400-square-foot industrial flex space, RE-NJ reported. The development at 5 Aaron Way is the first of two new buildings slated for the 32-acre White Lake Commerce Park, which will accommodate Wantage Township-based Joe Maggio Concrete and Masonry. NAI Hanson will market the additional lots at the Sussex County commerce park, which range from 1.89 to 5.76 acres. [GlobeSt] CORRECTION: A previous version of this paragraph mistakenly conflated Crow Holdings with Dallas-based Trammell Crow. They are two separate entities.

Legal battles flare over affordable housing protocols
An affordable housing agreement to develop 195 units across three properties in the Borough of Franklin Lakes has allowed the municipality to meet a key building benchmark, reported. A state judge approved a deal on June 26 that will generate 87 credits needed by Franklin Lakes to meet its constitutional affordable housing obligation and protect it from lawsuits until July 1, 2025, under New Jersey’s Mount Laurel Doctrine, which requires municipalities to use their zoning powers to promote affordable housing options. The Franklin Lakes plan calls for the construction of 52 units at 739 Franklin Avenue, 88 units at 724 Franklin Avenue and 55 units on McCoy Road. Meanwhile, in nearby Ridgewood, a developer behind the 43-unit Chestnut Village has filed a lawsuit against the village over changes to the affordable housing development. Two-Forty Associates, a limited liability company controlled by the family of late Ridgewood developer David Bolger, claims that it secured approvals to provide off-site special-needs housing in December. The developer is seeking to enforce what it believes is an approval it received for special-needs units across seven off-site inclusionary family rentals. The Ridgewood village attorney, however, said the developer did not secure approvals for special-needs housing, only for affordable housing. []