LONG BRANCH – After unveiling plans last week for a mixed-use project on lower Broadway, Pax Construction Corp. received the go-ahead from the city to continue negotiating for a redevelopment agreement.
Pax Construction has until April to enter a redeveloper’s agreement with the city for the project on Broadway, between Belmont and Third avenues, which is anticipated to create 50 to 100 jobs in the city’s downtown.
“I would guess dozens and dozens of jobs,” Councilman Anthony Giordano said at the Jan. 26 council workshop meeting. “It sounds like most of the employees will be local, which will be a benefit to the town.”
The city’s planner, Pratap Talwar, added, “I think this is going to be a standard on how downtown mixed development should occur.
“This project is really an amazing proposal in the heart of the Broadway Corridor redevelopment zone,” Talwar added.
The City Council adopted a resolution at the Feb. 26 meeting, authorizing the execution of a Business Points Memorandum.
he developers have 45 days from the
adoption of the memorandum to prepare and enter into a redevelopment agreement with the city, according to Patrick J. McNamara, attorney for Pax Construction.
“We are bringing a unique style of residential retail to this section of the community,” McNamara said at that meeting. “I think it is exciting to be a part of the Broadway initiative.”
Plans call for 22 residential units to be constructed on the site and up to five of the units will be designated as affordable housing, McNamara said.
A portion of the units will be live/work units, according to McNamara, who explained that the live/work units will be designed to have a dedicated “work” area on one floor and a residential, “live” area on a second floor.
At this time, all the units proposed for the project are slated to be rental, McNamara said, adding that all of the units will be constructed with patios.
The plans unveiled also include an underground parking garage to include 52 parking spaces, architect James J. Monteforte explained.
The developers have incorporated the Brent Good building on the corner of Broadway and Third Avenue into the project. The building will be attached to the new project with a bridge, according to Monteforte.
The current tenants of the Brent Good building will remain a part of the project in the existing building, according to Mc- Namara.
The new building to be constructed will be four stories high with retail planned for the first floor. Plans also include
a restaurant, six stores, a rooftop café, a dance studio and an art gallery, Monteforte said.
“This is not a flat building,” Monteforte said. “It has a lot of movement in and out with all the balconies.”
“There are a number of local businesses who have expressed serious interest in establishing or relocating existing ones to the new building,” McNamara said. “Since these discussions have not yet been finalized, it would not be appropriate at this time to identify those business people.”
The local developers own most of the property at the site, with the exception of three lots, two of which are city owned, that still need to be acquired, according to McNamara.
“The city lots will be conveyed by contract from the city to our client,” McNamara said. “The financial terms will be spelled out in the contract documents.
“Our client has been in negotiations with the owner of the other lot, who has indicated his willingness to sell the property to our client.
“We do not foresee the need for the city to use its power of eminent domain to acquire that one small parcel,” he added.
Plans call for construction on the project to start in the fall, according to Mc- Namara, who said that once the redeveloper’s agreement is signed, the developer must secure site plan approvals from the Long Branch Planning Board.
Construction on the project is expected to take 24 months, according to McNamara.
Principals in Pax Construction are the Pereira family, who are also partners in the Broadway Arts Center redevelopment project in the downtown Broadway redevelopment area.