$60M Adaptive Reuse Project Kicks Off in N.J.

An industrial facility in the Garden State that first opened its doors in 1897 will soon be reborn as a modern multifamily destination now that Prism Capital Partners LLC has broken ground on the first phase of The Parkway Lofts.

Bloomfield, N.J.—An industrial facility in the Garden State that first opened its doors in 1897 will soon be reborn as a modern multifamily destination now that Prism Capital Partners LLC has broken ground on the first phase of The Parkway Lofts. The $60 million master-planned development will ultimately span 14.5 acres along the Garden State Pkwy. in the cities of Bloomfield and East Orange.

Phase I of Parkway calls for the adaptive reuse of a 365,000-square-foot warehouse structure. The six-story building will get a new life as the site of 361 loft-style apartment units. Additionally, as part of the initial development phase, a new intermediate second floor and a penthouse level will be built and a three-level parking garage will be erected to accommodate residents. Prism Construction Services LLC, the developer’s construction division, is serving as the construction manager for the project.

Prism had a vision of blending the old with the new at the 114-year-old former General Electric Co. site from the very beginning. The commercial real estate company purchased the property from GE in 2005 with plans of incorporating the existing structures into the redevelopment. However, the acquisition of the property was just one necessary step in paving the way for the start of the project. The location was not exactly unoccupied.

Berjé Inc. had called the GE site home when Prism purchased the property. Instead of putting the oils and aromatic chemicals distributor company out on the street to find its own space, Prism found new digs for Berjé and became its landlord by acquiring a 230,000-square-foot industrial facility at 700 Blair Rd. in Carteret. The real estate company snapped up the building for $7.3 million and then inked a long-term lease agreement with the distributor and secured tenant-improvement financing from TD Bank.

The relocation of a tenant on the property was just part of the multi-faceted development procedure. Prism also had to penetrate the frosty credit market to obtain financing, navigate the complex process of rezoning and create an appropriate design within the confines of a historic preservation and redevelopment endeavor.

Phase II of Parkway will add 150 for-sale townhomes, as well as a clubhouse and additional amenities. In both phases, Prism will integrate parts of the property’s original architectural design, such as 15-foot quilt-panel windows.

But there’s a bigger picture beyond The Parkway Lofts’ contribution to a hungry multifamily market; the project has far-reaching implications. “It reflects the great opportunities for infill redevelopment in New Jersey,” Eugene Diaz, a principal partner with Prism, noted in a prepared statement. “In cases like The Parkway Lofts, companies like ours are working to preserve our state’s rich history while setting the stage for its future.”