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.