Asbury redevelopment in question

From the Asbury Park Press:

It’s being built, and they’re coming. . . albeit slowly: Market slump makes buyers, not building, Asbury’s priority

The beachfront developers getting the headlines this summer have been the men showing their money — Metro Homes’ Dean Geibel, who is building the beachfront Esperanza high rise, and Madison Marquette’s Gary Mottola, who is renovating and rebuilding the historic boardwalk buildings and pavilions.

The first builders to come in five years ago — Kushner Cos.’ Westminster Communities and Paramount Homes — aren’t getting quite the same attention.

But representatives of both say they are concentrating on selling the condominiums they have built and will continue to do so despite a housing market that, in Geibel’s words at a business luncheon last week, is “frozen in place.”

Sam Gershwin, president of Westminster Communities, which built its first 91 town homes and condominiums on Wesley Lake, said Tuesday that reports of Kushner Cos. refocusing the company’s commercial and residential investment opportunities in New York City are true but that construction on current New Jersey projects is not being shut down.

“We still have a very vibrant and active construction company ongoing,” Gershwin said. He said there are seven projects in New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.

“The marketplace is not good,” he said. “We’re building for those people who have bought units and finishing the rest of the buildings we have on the way.”

Gershwin said current buildings in Asbury Park, Cranford and Perth Amboy are being completed.

But at the same time, he said that in Asbury Park, for example, the focus is to get the St. James, the first planned lakeside building, sold out. What happens next on other blocks Westminster has contracted to develop is not clear.

“The St. James building we will finish,” Gershwin said on Tuesday. “When we or someone else can figure out when the marketplace is going to change and people want to buy real estate, we will get involved again. We would look at opportunities.”

“Asbury Partners did file litigation against us,” Gershwin said. “We presently are working with them to come to a mutual, agreeable resolution, and both parties have agreed to adjourn the court actions pending a negotiated resolution.”

Deputy Mayor James Bruno, asked if it was possible that another developer could come in and replace Westminster, said “it is possible — any developer who comes in must be approved by the City Council.”

This entry was posted in New Development, New Jersey Real Estate. Bookmark the permalink.

12 Responses to Asbury redevelopment in question

  1. njpatient says:


    (More to come, I’m sure)

  2. PeaceNow says:

    Frist? Do you mean ‘first’? (And, if you do, what’s the point?)

    As someone who grew up in Monmouth County and now lives right next door to Asbury, I was so hopeful this time around that it might make it. But even without the recent housing downturn, I could see there were going to be problems because so little had been done to transform the biggest amenity the town has to offer: the beachfront. Add to that the crime and gang problems and you’re asking a lot if you expect somebody to buy a 400K+ condo in Asbury.

    There’s going to be an auction in mid-September at a smaller, older condo conversion. The developer said he wanted to get the units sold before all the new units enter the pipeline. Four of the 18 units up for auction have no minimum bids. If anyone’s interested, I can post a link.

  3. Bill says:

    What is the link for this conversion you are talking about? I’ve been spending a lot of time in Asbury this summer. I’m actually surprised how far it’s come in the past few years. Cookman is a vibrant little downtown with some great restaurants and the beach has been cleaned up nicely. I agree that it’s happening a lot slower than everyone expected but the boardwalk has markedly improved. It also looks like they are doing a lot of work on Convention Hall and the Casino…..

  4. Arr Elle says:

    Hello PeaceNow:

    I am interested in the link.


  5. njpatient says:

    #2 Peacenow

    No – I meant Frist. Just my sense of humor; don’t worry about it.

    Nice handle.

  6. PeaceNow says:

    Of course, having promised a link, now I can’t find one… But here are the basic details.

    Condo complex is called the Ocean Arms, which is at 304 Fourth Ave. This is outside the ’eminent domain’ area. It appears that 17 condos will be sold, most with suggested starting prices of $75,000, but four will have no minimums. Previews are going on now on weekends from 11-2. The auction is on Sept. 16. Prospective bidders can get info from Sheldon Good & Co., 800-516-0014. All of these appear to be one bedrooms.

  7. Aaron says:

    Did they tear down the shell of the condominium from the last housing bubble yet?
    I helped them restore the carousel at palace amusements then watched them part it out and sell it.

    Asbury is the land of a thousand boondoggles.

  8. Ed Sanders says:

    Asbury Park seems to be one of those towns that always manages to just miss. If they had the redevelopment ball rolling two years earlier, I think the town would have gotten a toehold on a comeback before being crushed by the RE downturn, but that does not seem to be the city’s fate. It truly is a shame.

  9. Clotpoll says:

    Joan Hamburg was on WOR Friday AM, hawking and spinning Asbury Park like it was the Hamptons. The Eseranza guy and a couple of other local bigs were there, pumping like mad.

    Like what Asbury Park needs is a bunch of overpriced condos and goofy restaurants that sell rancid tuna tartare and $12 blue martinis. Friggin’ Soho at the shore. Yeah, we need another Soho. Let’s go to Abercrombie.


  10. formerly of Wall says:

    I bought, renovated, and moved a few years ago from Wall and have certainly seen the changes in town. Several years ago AP was a complete ghost town. Today ,over labor day w/e, tons of people on the beach , downtown, and dining out. Overpriced? of course. But progress? absolutely. City people who want to be on/by the beach wont see the violence as a deterrent, (they have it where they live) however it definitely needs to be addressed.

  11. Liz says:

    Where have all the artists gone?

Comments are closed.