Author Archives: kyorio1528

Construction of Mixed-Use Development Ongoing at AstraZeneca Campus in Delaware

Vertical construction is underway at the Avenue North hotel, retail, and residential portion of the AstraZeneca Fairfax Campus expansion in Newark, DE.

The $350 million project on the 80-acre site will create new office space to support the growing life sciences community. It also has a mixed-use development, which will include at least 300 apartments totaling more than 450,000 square feet. To meet the needs of those new residents as well as office workers, there will be 200,000 square feet of retail stores, as well as restaurants, a fitness center and day care constructed.

A five-story, 200-room, 180,000 square foot luxury hotel and meeting facilities will be built near the entrance of the complex to meet the needs of those visiting the campus off of Route 202.

Developer Dell Dunne and Associates says the development will be the first of its kind in Delaware. No completion date has been set. 

Swarthmore College Dining Hall Project Underway

Right now, college students who are on campuses across the country have been told to adhere to social distancing and follow other safety precautions. Dining options are modified for students protection, as well.

But as Swarthmore College students follow those rules this fall, the  Swarthmore College Sharples Dining Hall Addition & Community Commons project is building with its eye on a return to eating and socializing in a communal space.

The project will add 40,000 square feet to the dining hall, in an attempt to meet the needs of a growing student population and more dining options. It will also create a communal space for staff and students to relax and socialize. Construction is underway.

Demolition of the Phi Psi building at 5 Sharples Lane is complete, and the excavation for the basement space is underway.  The design aims to be a net-zero building. When completed, that basement can be the location for  a geothermal exchange plant to service the entire campus, which would allow the college to act toward its goal of transitioning away from the use of fossil fuels for heating and cooling campus buildings.

Phase 1 of this two-phased project, the completion of the dining hall addition, is expected to be done in June 2022. The entire project has an anticipated completion date of August 2023.

Former Bayonne Catholic School To Become Luxury Apartments

The pandemic and its economic impact have created another challenge for Catholic schools struggling to stay open. Just this year, at least 19 New Jersey Catholic schools closed, and at least another five were folded into nearby schools. Buildings left empty by closings are not new for the Catholic schools, which have been battling falling enrollment and funding issues for years. 

Our Lady of Mount Carmel School in Bayonne has sat unused since the school closed in 2008. Now developers plan to convert the school into a luxury apartment building within walking distance of the light rail.

The 99-year-old building at the corner of East 22nd Street and Church Lane will retain the original Roman revival-style façade as the interior is turned into 30 loft apartments, from studios to two-bedroom units. Plans for the building also include a gym, rooftop terrace, and garage.

The target date for the $15-20 million project is third quarter 2021, but that is contingent upon approvals. As of earlier this week, the site plan application had yet to be filed with the town planning board. Developers still plan to complete construction and start leasing apartments in late 2023.

Senior Living and Luxury Apartments Coming in Montgomery County, PA

Site work continues in Bala Cynwyd, PA, where the historic Lees Shoddy Mill makes way for a modern senior living facility on the 4.8-acre site. A six-story, 84-unit, 96-bed apartment building will take the place of the former mill built in the 1800s.

The apartment building will include various amenities such as libraries, a fitness center, a computer space, rehabilitative and memory services and a small park for community use. There will also be 68 parking spaces. 

Continued delays leave the target date for vertical construction unknown.

Elsewhere in Montgomery County, construction has yet to begin on a five-story building of luxury apartments in Lansdale. The $35-40 million project on a four-acre site will include 205 units and various amenities. A creek will run around the building and parking lot. Completion is expected by April 2022.

Veterans and Affordable Housing Building Underway in Downtown Dover

Construction has begun on veterans and affordable housing units in Dover, NJ.

The $1.1 million project will consist of 70 one-, two-, and three-bedroom units in a four-story building. Each floor of the building will have laundry facilities. There will be on-site parking, a community space, bicycle storage and on-site maintenance and support services for residents.

At least five percent of the units will be accessible to residents with physical disabilities, and all units will be completely adaptable.

Veterans will receive preference for half of the units. Five units will be set aside for residents who were previously homeless.

The project, which is part of Dover’s master redevelopment plan of downtown, is being built on a former parking lot. The building will conform to the existing architecture of downtown Dover. Developers anticipate completion of the project—which is being finance with low-income housing tax credit from the New Jersey Housing and Mortgage Finance Agency—is expected in 14 months.

Princeton University Makes Room, Will Build New Soccer Facilities

Demolition of the Fritz Randolph Observatory at Princeton University has begun, the first step toward the new East Garage & Roberts Stadium at Princeton Stadium & Jadwin Gym. The university plans to salvage stones from the Observatory and use them elsewhere on campus, but the historic building will be lost to soccer facilities, athletics buildings, and amenities for fans.

A five-level parking garage is expected to be finished by Summer 2022. The university has targeted Fall 2022 for the completion of a new soccer stadium and practice field. Roberts Stadium will have a capacity of 3,000 fans, an NCAA regulation-sized soccer field with natural grass, support areas, a ticket office, concession area, and a press box. The practice field will have artificial turf. Both facilities on the East Campus near Jadwin Gymnasium will have lights for nighttime use.

The site will also have an athletics operations facility, paths and roads that create better access and travel through the area for cars, bikes, and pedestrians, and a geo-exchange utility facility and the needed associated infrastructure to support campus-wide carbon neutrality goals. The area being redeveloped is a 33-acre portion of a lot that is more than 140 acres. Already at the site are a biodigester pilot project, buildings for athletics and university operations, the Finney/Campbell athletic fields, and the East Basin.

Jersey City Tower Project Can Move Forward

With litigation recently settled, developer HAP Investments has been granted automatic site approval for the $400 million HAP 11 Tower Park and Community Center in Jersey City. The Summit Ave project, which has been in the works for years, can now move forward as part of the development of the Hilltop neighborhood near Journal Square.

The two existing empty two-story residential structures will be demolished, clearing the way for a 42-story, one million square foot mixed use tower. There are 800 residential units planned along with 35,000 square feet of retail.

Under the terms of the agreement, HAP will construct a 0.8-acre park at the location, as well as a $2.5 million community center, both of which will then be transferred to city ownership.  The tower will be built first and the community center and park must be completed within a year of the residential units Certificate of Occupancy. In addition, 40 of the 100 spaces in the garage will be reserved for the community center and park.

New York City Sees Biggest Negative Impact from Pandemic

The construction industry a took huge hit with coronavirus shutdowns and the ensuing economic downturn. But New York City was impacted more than the surrounding area in the first half of 2020, according to a CIS analysis of its projects.

In some of the most revealing numbers: new public projects put out to bid were down 51 percent. That’s more than 20 percent worse than Long Island and an even larger decline compared to Westchester, and New Jersey.

 Most discouraging was the total value of public projects that were bid in the first half of the year. Those numbers were down 61 percent. It is worth noting, however, that New York City’s project numbers were lower in January, February, and March, as well. The state didn’t shut down nonessential construction until March 31.

Employment in New York City building construction fell by more than 35 percent year-over-year in May, according to the state’s Department of Labor. While there was an immediate rush of activity and rehiring once non-essential construction could resume, that was primarily to catch-up on projects that were in progress. With the reduced number of public projects put out to bid, industry leaders worry that the work and hiring won’t continue.

Data from July backs that fear. According to the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), construction employment in July was down 66 percent in 358 metro areas across the country compared to the year before. New York City lost the most construction jobs, down 26,500 (or 16 percent) from the previous July, according to the AGC.

Amid fears that the virus numbers will spike, forcing another shutdown in the city, contractors are pushing to finish work on projects in progress, but there is understandable concern that budget issues will kill any hopes of continued recovery. When the city’s budget passed in July – the first budget that has been lower than the previous year since the Great Recession in 2009 – money for affordable housing and public projects was cut. New York City faces a projected $9 billion revenue loss because of the global pandemic, at the same time President Trump is threatening to cut off federal funding to the city. If federal funding doesn’t come, Governor Andrew Cuomo says vital infrastructure projects and some of the city’s biggest construction plans, including projects at LaGuardia and JFK airports and the new Penn Station, could be put on hold. The AGC says that without federal funding, commercial construction companies will be forced to lay off more workers.

The analysis did show one bright spot: The number of new private projects being planned actually increased from 2019.

This could continue, particularly in private healthcare projects. Industry experts predict growth in healthcare construction for New York City over the next few years. There may even be an opportunity for private projects developing outdoor spaces for restaurants and retail.

New Hospital at CHOP King of Prussia Campus Making Progress

Progress continues on the new Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia building at CHOP’s campus at the Village at Valley Forge in King of Prussia, PA. In July, developers held a topping off event for the $186 million project and construction continues toward a late 2021 completion and opening of the 250,000 square foot, seven-floor inpatient hospital.

The new building sits alongside the existing CHOP specialty care and surgery center and will be the anchor of the Philadelphia hospital’s satellite campus. Plans call for 52 private rooms, and include an emergency department, a pediatric ICU, operating suites, and a radiology department.

This building is one of many in CHOP’s expansion into the Philadelphia suburbs in Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Ongoing and future projects include a specialty and urgent care center in Abington, PA, a medical office and retail center in Moorestown, NJ, and an inpatient tower in Philadelphia.

Mixed-Use Building Gets Approval for Newark’s Ironbound District

A new mixed-use building has been approved by the Newark Planning Board. Florio Residential and Retail at 648-652 Raymond Boulevard calls for 120 residential units and 2,800 square feet of ground floor retail space. It is another building in the ongoing redevelopment of Newark’s Ironbound District in the East Ward.

The new five-story building across from Newark’s Riverfront Park will be more than 141,000 square feet. The residential floors will be a mix of studios and one- and two-bedroom units. There will also be more than 1,200 square feet of amenity space on the second floor and a 5,200 square feet terrace for use by residents.

A ground level parking garage with 89 spots is also planned.

The project requires the demolition of the existing building on the site, which sits a little more than a mile from both Newark Penn Station and the PATH station in Harrison.