From the WSJ:
Jersey City’s residential construction boom is spreading beyond its waterfront area to neighborhoods farther inland where planners and developers have long dreamed about building with little to show for it until now.
In August, for example, Kushner Real Estate Group and National Realty Advisors broke ground on the first of three planned towers at a giant development in Journal Square, known as Journal Squared, which will have a total of 1,840 units and 36,000 square feet of retail. Builders are currently excavating and underpinning the project’s foundation.
“We really believe in the market,” said Jonathan Kushner, president of Kushner Real Estate Group, citing Jersey City’s transit options and growing night life.
Also in the Journal Square area, renters will soon start moving into Kennedy Lofts, a converted office building. There is already a waiting list forming for the units—which run from $1,500 a month for a studio to $2,100 for a two-bedroom, says Heriberto Camacho, with Keller Williams City Life Realty.
Other Journal Square projects are close to moving forward. A venture of developer Kenneth Pasternak and Kushner Cos.—a different branch of the Kushner family—are planning to convert the building that used to house the Jersey Journal, into a mixed-use project including rental apartments.
That same group also is purchasing a huge site across the street from the Journal building. It is approved for a tower that could soar 60 stories.
“We see some of the same dynamics of Brooklyn here at half the price point,” said Mr. Pasternak, whose real-estate company is named KABR Group.
Overall, Jersey City is seeing a record level of new apartments being built. There are 5,609 units this year under construction in the Journal Square and downtown areas compared with 3,009 last year and 5,122 in 2008, which had been the peak year until now, according to statistics provided by the mayor’s office.
Jersey City is being bolstered by its proximity and convenient transit options into Manhattan, including the ferry and PATH train. Also, like many other urban areas throughout the country, Jersey City is attracting young people as more rural parts of the state have shed jobs and lost population, said James Hughes, dean of the Edward J. Bloustein School of Planning and Public Policy at Rutgers University.
“Millennials don’t want to work in suburban office campuses,” said Mr. Hughes. “They want edgier environments.”